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No Peace on Earth for THIS Lady!

Christmas Salvation Peace

Source: "Police: Motorist Tried To Run Over Ex As He Put Up Lights," by CBS/AP, published Philadelphia CBS Affiliate KDKA, Channel 3, December 7, 2016

Link to Source: Click here to view source

Contributed By: Rod Crowell | Date Posted: 2016-12-12

Scripture: Luke 2:14 ; Romans 5:1

Author: Rod Crowell
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ILLUSTRATION

CBS Affiliate KDKA Channel 3, Philadelphia, reports of an unusual Christmas disturbance.

Local resident Alan McCutcheon was busy putting up his Christmas lights on his home, when suddenly his ex-girlfriend, Mary Jo Smith, came barreling through his yard in her car. She made several tours through the yard screaming “Merry Christmas,” all the while Christmas carols blasted from her cranked radio through her open windows. At one point, she even took aim (thankfully, unsuccessfully) to run McCutcheon over.

“She proceeded to do a pretty significant amount of damage to the outside of the residence,”  Stefani Lucas with Pennsylvania State Police told CBS Pittsburgh. “The Christmas decorations were damaged, the vehicle was damaged, property was damaged, the home itself [was damaged],” Lucas said.

So much for "Peace on earth, goodwill toward men!"

APPLICATION

When we consider the crazy stuff that happens every day, in and out of the holiday season, we understand why the heavenly host of angels didn't announce "Peace on earth to EVERYONE!" but rather, "On earth, peace to those on whom God's favor [grace] rests."

Peace isn't found in exacting revenge! Rather, peace is found in a PERSON--Jesus Christ, God's Son, our Savior and Prince of Peace.  

When we recognize that our sin separates us from God and from each other; when we recognize that we are incapable of pleasing a perfectly holy God with our half-hearted efforts; and when we recognize that God knew this and sent His Son to bear the death penalty for our sin, so His Father could declare us righteous, forgiven and free to forgive others--THEN, and only then, can we find that peace for ourselves.  It's a gift we must receive and then we can share it.  

Maybe as she awaits trial, Mary Jo Smith can find time to ponder the words of the Christmas music her car stereo blared as her spinning wheels tore up Mr. McCutcheon's yard.

"Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ" (Romans 5:1).  

Contentment Quotes

Contentment Quotes Satisfaction Peace

Source: Various

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2016-02-26

Author: Various
4

ILLUSTRATION

“Our society has inundated us with the importance of importance. WE have been conditioned to believe in the big, the fast, the expensive and the far away. I’m still convinced that if you have to move even ten inches from where you are now in order to be happy, you never will be. Life becomes precious and more special to us when we look for the little everyday miracles and get excited again about the privilege of simply being human.” [Tim Hansel is a popular speaker and seminar leader, and author of several books, as will as the founder of Ignite!, an organization striving to motivate, encourage, and empower people.]

“He who has God and many other things has no more than he who has God alone.” [C.S. Lewis (1898-1963) was a British novelist, poet, academic, medievalist, literary critic, essayist, lay theologian, broadcaster, lecturer, and Christian apologist.]

“It isn't what you have or who you are or where you are or what you are doing that makes you happy or unhappy. It is what you think about it.” [Dale Carnegie 1988-1955) was an American writer and lecturer and the developer of famous courses in self-improvement, salesmanship, corporate training, public speaking, and interpersonal skills.]

“Many people lose the small joys in the hope for the big happiness.” [Pearl S. Buck (1892-1973) was an American writer and novelist. As the daughter of missionaries, Buck spent most of her life before 1934 in China.]

“For after all, the best thing one can do when it is raining is let it rain.” [Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807-1882) was an American poet and educator whose works include "Paul Revere's Ride", The Song of Hiawatha, and Evangeline.]

“He who is not contented with what he has, would not be contented with what he would like to have.” [Socrates (470 BC - 399 BC) was a classical Greek philosopher credited as one of the founders of Western philosophy.]

“We are not rich by what we possess but by what we can do without.” [Immanuel Kant (1724-1804) was a German philosopher who is considered the central figure of modern philosophy.]

“Being content is perhaps no less easy than playing the violin well: and requires no less practice.” [Alain de Botton (1969 - ) is a Swiss-born, British-based philosopher, writer, and television personality.]

“Disappointment is a sticky one, because no one can steal contentment, joy, gratitude, or peace - we have to give it away.” [Kristin Armstrong (1973 - ) is a professional road bicycle racer and two-time Olympic gold medalist.]

“True contentment is a thing as active as agriculture. It is the power of getting out of any situation all that there is in it. It is arduous and it is rare.” [Gilbert K. Chesterton (1874-1936) was an English writer, lay theologian, poet, philosopher, dramatist, journalist, orator, literary and art critic, biographer, and Christian apologist.]

“My main job is to live with deep contentment, joy, and confidence in my everyday experience of life with God. Everything else is job number two.” [John Ortberg (1957 - ) is an evangelical Christian author, speaker, and senior pastor of Menlo Park Presbyterian Church in Menlo Park, California].

“Man never has what he wants, because what he wants is everything.” [ C.F. Ramuz quotes (1878-1947), French Poet, Author and Essayist,]

“The fountain of contentment must spring up in the mind, and they who have so little knowledge of human nature as to seek happiness by changing anything but their own disposition, will waste their lives in fruitless efforts and multiply the grief they propose to remove.” [Samuel Johnson (1709-1784) was an English writer, poet, essayist, moralist, literary critic, biographer, editor and lexicographer.]

“Discontentment makes rich people poor while contentment makes poor people rich.” [Unknown]

“To know when you have enough is to be rich.” [Lao-tzu (4th or 5th century BC) was an ancient Chinese philosopher and writer known as the reputed author of the Tao Te Ching and the founder of the Taoism belief system.]

“Contentment has the ability to squeeze out of every situation all the good there is to get.” [Unknown]

“The secret of contentment is the realization that life is a gift, not a right.” [Unknown]

“A harvest of peace is produced from a seed of contentment.” [American proverb]

“Resentment comes from looking at others. Contentment comes form looking at God.” [Unknown]

“Do not spoil what you have by desiring what you don’t have.” [Epicurus (341 BC -  270 BC) was a Greek philosopher focused upon the philosophy of simple pleasures.]

“Until you make peace with who you are, you’ll never be content with what you have.” [Doris Mortman is a modern American fiction writer.]

“Contentment means wanting what you have, rather than having what you want.” [Unknown]

“What day is it?” asked Pooh. “It’s today,” squeaked Piglet. “My favorite day,” said Pooh. [A.A. Milne, author and creator, WINNIE THE POOH]

“The happiest people don’t have the best of everything; they just make the best of everything.” [Unknown]

APPLICATION

Many of the above quotes express their own points of application. They do not necessaily reflect the opinions of the editors.

The Best Death

Death Faith Peace

Source: "What's The Best Way To Die?" By Robyn Coggins, THE WILSON QUARTERLY

Link to Source: Click here to view source

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2015-12-23

Scripture: Romans 14:18 ; Philippians 1:21

Author: Mitchell Dillon
6

ILLUSTRATION

Robyn Coggins, writing for THE WILSON QUARTERLY, raises an interesting question:

After a particularly gruesome news story — ISIS beheadings, a multicar pileup, a family burnt in their beds during a house fire — I usually get to wondering whether that particular tragic end would be the worst way to go. The surprise, the pain, the fear of impending darkness.

But lately, I’ve been thinking that it’s the opposite question that begs to be asked: what’s the best way to die? Given hypothetical, anything-goes permission to choose from a creepy, unlimited vending machine of endings, what would you select?

... There are lots of ways to look at the query. Would I want to know when I’m going to die, or be taken by surprise? (I mean, as surprising as such an inevitable event can be.) Would I want to be cognizant, so I can really experience dying as a process? Or might it be better to drowse my way through it?

After bringing this question to several friends, Coggins writes:

... One old standby came up quite a lot: dying of old age in my bed, surrounded by family. The hospital nurses I asked had a twist on that trope: in bed, surrounded by family, and dying of kidney failure. Among nurses, there was consensus that this is the best way to go if you’re near death and in intensive care — you just fade out and pass, one ICU nurse told me.

... my nurse friend got me wondering about people who deal with death on the regular — what do they think about the best death? Do they think about it? Surely hospice workers, physicians, oncologists, “right-to-die” advocates, cancer-cell biologists, bioethicists, and the like have a special view on dying. What might their more-informed criteria be for my “best death” query?

Coggins then interviews Jim Cleary, a physician from Madison, Wisconsin, who specializes in palliative care and cancer-related pain relief. Cleary's main concern was that, “eighty percent of the world’s population lacks access to opioids.” Dr. Cleary, who serves as the director of the World Health Organization’s pain and policy studies group, which is working to get pain relief medications to the nations that need them, offered this answer:

... the idea of a “best” death or even a “good” death is a little misleading, as if it’s a competition or something one can fail at. He prefers the term “healthy dying,” which isn’t as oxymoronic as it sounds. To him, healthy dying means that death is “well-prepared for, it’s expected, and other people know about it.”

From her interview with a licenced therapist, Coggins writes:

After helping hundreds of people with their deaths — filing wills, deciding on final treatments, aiding loved ones with the transition — she’s developed an idea of a good death that’s based on her background in psychology. You’ve heard it before: letting go.

In this lengthy article, containing additional interviews and sidebar commentary, Coggins concludes that the best death is, "Peaceful. Especially given the circumstances of a degenerative illness, 'peaceful' seems like an indispensable criterion for the 'best death.'"

APPLICATION

In this article, hospice workers, physicians, oncologists, right-to-die advocates, cancer-cell biologists, and bioethicists were all consulted in a search for insights into the best death. But one important group of professionals was left out. What about clergy? Pastors certainly have “a special view on dying”--one that offers an indispensable contribution to the discussion.

From a pastoral perspective, death involves so much more than a quick vs. slow death, or a painless vs. painful one. Every shepherd knows that the most significant factor involved in the quality of one's passing is the issue of faith vs. doubt. What pastors see, more than any other profession, is the stark contrast at life’s end between those who have a vital relationship with God and those who don’t; between those who know God’s love and rest in His promises, and those who don’t.

As a pastor, I have seen time and again how those who die in faith arrive at the end of their earthly journey with a greater sense of having fulfilled their purpose, with fewer regrets, and with a transcendent peace. Hands down, regardless of any other consideration, these are the persons who experience the best death!

“If we live, it's to honor the Lord. And if we die, it's to honor the Lord. So whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord” (Romans 14:8, NLT).

“For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain” (Philippians 1:21).

The Prize of His Peace

Peace Reconciliation Politics

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2015-12-12

Scripture: John 14:27

Author: Illustration Exchange
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When Will We All Sit Down To Eat

Marriage Supper of the Lamb Unity Peace

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2015-01-12

Scripture: Revelation 19:9

Author: Madeleine L'Engle / Illustration Exchange
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Teen Dies In Poorly Conceived Payback Plan

Anger Vengeance Peace

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2014-12-29

Scripture: Romans 12:17

Author: Evann Gastaldo, Newser Staff / Illustration Excha
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Jehovah is Peace

Anxiety Peace Fear

Contributed By: Ernie Scalabrin | Date Posted: 2014-12-05

Scripture: Judges 6:24

Author: Ernie Scalabrin
12

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Worry's Shadow

Worry Peace Devotional Thoughts

Contributed By: John Pratt | Date Posted: 2014-12-05

Scripture: Philippians 4:6

Author: Swedish Proverb
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Beheaded Journalist James Foley Found Peace In Prayer

Prayer Peace Freedom

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2014-09-18

Author: James Foley / Illustration Exchange
2

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The Answer to Our Stifling Fear

Easter Fear Peace

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2014-03-31

Scripture: Luke 24:36

Author: Illustration Exchange / Billy Graham
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