Illustrations

Subject: God the Giver

What's the Problem?

A few years ago a man gave his wife a new Cadillac for her birthday. For weeks she babied and pampered that car; washing and waxing it every couple of days; cleaning it inside and out, everyday; the windows looked like crystal; and she sprayed it with "new car" fragrance to keep it smelling new.

So, what's the problem?

Well, the one who gave it to her felt neglected; after all, it was out of love that she had received the gift.

Are we so intent on the gifts of God that we're neglecting the Giver of the gifts?

J. A. Gillmartin, sheepcribone.blogspot.com

Subject: Salvation

The GPS

The invention of the Global Positioning System (GPS) is having a great impact on the world. It is used by millions of people in personal life and the business world. Most modes of transportation now use GPS, and its use is expanding every day.

As a hunter and outdoorsman for 70 years, I know very well what it is to be lost in the deep woods. The GPS would've been a very welcome device on several occasions-there is nothing worse than being lost and knowing no one is looking for you.

Recently, I met a young man that told me he was going to purchase a GPS that day. This gave me an opportunity to tell him that GPS also stands for "God's Plan of Salvation". Just like a mechanical GPS, God's GPS tells you where you are and how to get where you need to be. It's waterproof, too!

Wayne Nix

Subject: Leadership

Deadly Example

Test pilot Russell O'Quinn never thought of himself as much of a leader. When he was in college, he spent a lot of time flying in his first plane, always leaving the runway with a signature aerobatic maneuver that he had spent many months perfecting.

When one of his friends had completed his flying lessons, he attempted his first solo in O'Quinn's plane. Upon takeoff, he mimicked O'Quinn's maneuver. His inexperience, however, caused the plane to stall out and plummet to a fiery crash.

O'Quinn watched from the runway, devastated at the realization that he had been leading by example, and felt responsible for his friend's death. That night he prayed for the first time in His life, begging God for mercy and giving his life to Christ.

Today, he recognizes that he is a leader, but he has a new goal-instead of leading people to follow his example, he strives to lead them to the cross.

Justin Lonas
Adapted from a speech by Russell O'Quinn

Subject: Commitment

Should Job Have Sued God?

Oftentimes it is little children who come up with profound thoughts that few adults would dare express. Here is one such example:

The lawyer made it a habit to put his little girl to bed at night by reading her a Bible story. This particular night he read to her the story of Job.

As she learned about the man who lost his wife, cattle, and children; whose body was racked with sores and whose friends forsook him, she was finally compelled to ask: "Daddy, why didn't Job sue God?"

We can curse God, blame God, abandon God, and yes, even try to sue God-but a true Christian believer clings to God in time of trouble; he doesn't forsake God.

Practical Illustrations-Galatians-Colossians, by Leadership Ministries Worldwide

Subject: God's Creativity

The Power Source

On June 15, 1752, Benjamin Franklin and his son William were "stringing in the rain."

They had created a special silk kite with a wire attached to the tip. At the other end of the kite's string was a brass key. When the kite disappeared into a storm cloud, electric sparks jumped from the key. For Ben and Will, it was a shocking experience!

In addition to Franklin, others in the world, like Gilbert, Browne, DuFay, Volta, and Ampere are all given equal credit for making electricity the indispensable commodity we enjoy today.

But note that no human invented electricity. They discovered and harnessed what God had already created. The Scriptures record his amazing actions: "He fills his hands with lightning and commands it to strike its mark" (Job 36:32; Isa. 40:28).

It is impossible to imagine all that God has created, that we are not even aware of. In heaven, it will take an eternity just to discover how God does it all!

J. Kenneth Bassett, Timeless Signatures © 2003

Subject: Hid in Christ

The Value of Cheriths

"Hide thyself by the brook Cherith" (1 Kgs. 17:3).

God's servants must be taught the value of the hidden life. The man who is to take a high place before his fellows must take a low place before his God. We must not be surprised if sometimes our Father says: "There, child, thou hast had enough of this hurry, and publicity, and excitement; get thee hence and hide thyself by the brook-hide thyself in the Cherith of the sick chamber, or in the Cherith of bereavement, or in some solitude from which the crowds have ebbed away."

Every saintly soul that would wield great power with men must win it in some hidden Cherith. The acquisition of spiritual power is impossible, unless we can hide ourselves from men and from ourselves in some deep gorge where we may absorb the power of the eternal God.

Bishop Andrews had his Cherith, in which he spent five hours every day in prayer and devotion. John Welsh had it-who thought the day ill spent which did not witness eight or ten hours of closet communion. David Brainerd had it in the woods of North America. Christmas Evans had it in his long and lonely journeys amid the hills of Wales.

Or, passing back to the blessed age from which we date the centuries: Patmos, the seclusion of the Roman prisons, the Arabian desert, the hills and vales of Palestine, are forever memorable as the Cheriths of those who have made our modern world. Our Lord found His Cherith at Nazareth, and in the wilderness of Judea; amid the olives of Bethany, and the solitude of Gadara.

None of us, therefore, can dispense with some Cherith where the sounds of human voices are exchanged for the waters of quietness which are fed from the throne; and where we may taste the sweets and imbibe the power of a life hidden with Christ.

From Elijah, by Meyer, as found in Streams in the Desert, compiled by Mrs. Charles E. Cowman, Zondervan Publishing House, ©1925, 1953, 1965 by Cowman Publications

Subject: Hearing God

Blind Mountain Climber

Erik Weihenmayer is blind from a degenerative eye disease, yet on May 25, 2001, he scaled the peak of deadly Mt. Everest. Erik's success on this treacherous ascent came because he listened well. He cued in on the little bell tied to the back of the climber in front of him, so he would know what direction to go. He listened to the voice of teammates who would shout back to him, "Death fall two feet to your right!" so he would know what direction not to go. He listened to the sound of his pick jabbing the ice, so he would know whether the ice was safe to cross.

Dear Friend, are you facing a perilous climb in life? Make sure you keep your attention on the voice of the Lord. Take your cues from His Spirit and Word to avoid the pitfalls ahead. In walking with Jesus, what you hear is what you finally get!

"How rare it is to find a person quiet enough to hear God speak"-Anonymous.

Passed on by Ted Matamis, asnoteftb@comcast.net

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