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No Cheap Gifts For Christmas

Christmas Sacrifice Selfless

Source: "Peanuts" comic strip

Contributed By: Charles Krieg | Date Posted: 2018-11-15

Scripture: John 3:16 ; Mark 10:45

Author: Charles Krieg
14

ILLUSTRATION

In an episode of the comic strip “Peanuts,” Charlie Brown cracks open his piggy bank. He says to Lucy, “Look, I’ve got $9.11 to spend on Christmas gifts.”  Lucy is not impressed as she says, “You can’t buy something for everyone with $9.11, Charlie Brown.” Charlie Brown says, “Oh yeah? Well I’m gonna try!” “Then” Lucy continues, “they’re sure gonna be cheap presents.”  Charlie  says with absolute conviction, “Nothing is cheap if it costs all that you have.”

APPLICATION

On the very first Christmas, God gave us all that He had: Himself, in the person of his Son, Jesus. Thirty-three years later Jesus would give us all that he had: his very life. Now it is our turn to give a gift to Jesus, and it should, likewise, cost all that you've got. 

Revenge Always Fails

Love (Divine) Revenge Sacrifice

Source: “Woman buys tank to slaughter Nazis who killed her husband”

Link to Source: Click here to view source

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2017-06-07

Scripture: 1 Corinthians 13:8 ; Romans 12:19

Author: Illustration Exchange
7

ILLUSTRATION

In a series of articles on the greatest acts of revenge, grunge.com writes,

Mariya Oktyabrskaya was a telephone operator, the wife of a Soviet army officer, and the proud owner of a T-34 tank, with which she used to kill enough Nazis in World War II to earn her the title of "Hero of the Soviet Union." After the outbreak of war, Mariya was evacuated to Siberia, while her husband went off to fight. He was killed almost immediately, though the news didn't reach Mariya until nearly two years later. Driven by rage, and with nothing left to lose, Mariya sold her house and belongings in exchange for a T-34, which she donated to the Soviet Union under the condition that she be the one to drive it.

... Though her unit was initially skeptical of what they saw as nothing more than a publicity stunt, their opinions quickly changed after her first battle, in which she eliminated numerous machine gun nests, artillery guns, and the Nazis who manned them. When her tank was hit and immobilized by heavy enemy fire, she immediately jumped out to repair it. For this action, she was promoted to Sergeant, though "Goddess of Steel" might have been more apropos.

Unfortunately, after many battles and many dead Germans, her luck caught up with her in January of 1944. She was killed during a battle near the village of Shvedy, while making yet more repairs to her immobilized tank. She did not, however, die before eliminating several machine gun nests, trenches, a self-propelled gun, and yet more Nazis for good measure.

APPLICATION

Revenge is a powerful motivator.  It has the power to motivate a wife to sell everything, buy a T-34 tank and kill Nazis. What it doesn’t have the power to do is to motivate us to forgive, to heal or to restore. Although Mariya Oktyabrskaya's story is one of great courage, there is nothing redemptive about it. That's because there is nothing redemptive in revenge. 

Love, on the other hand, also has the power to motivate us to make great sacrifices.  Jesus was motivated by love when He left it all behind and came to earth to fight the powers of sin and death.  The difference is that once He accomplished His mission, He secured forgiveness, healing, and restoration for all mankind. 

No doubt the Apostle Paul was thinking of Jesus’ example when he wrote, “love never fails.”(1 Corinthians 13:8). 

"Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God's wrath, for it is written: "It is mine to avenge; I will repay," says the Lord" (Romans 12:19). 

Through the Looking Glass And What Alice Found There

Sacrifice Discipleship Cross

Source: THROUGH THE LOOKING GLASS AND WHAT ALICE FOUND THERE by Lewis Carroll

Link to Source: Click here to view source

Contributed By: James Miller | Date Posted: 2015-11-08

Scripture: Matthew 16:24 ; Matthew 10:39

Author: Lewis Carroll
7

ILLUSTRATION

You’ve heard of and maybe have even read Lewis Carroll’s book ALICE'S ADVENTURES IN WONDERLAND. But I run into very few people who have read the prequel, THROUGH THE LOOKING GLASS AND WHAT ALICE FOUND THERE, though you may have heard the poem Jabberwocky which is in it.  

Alice walks through a mirror and ends up in a house that is a mirror image of her own, and has strange mirroring properties, so she has to learn to reorient herself.  She finds she has to walk left when she wants to go right. Jabberwocky is written backwards, so Alice can only read it by holding it up to a mirror.  Everything is backwards. To get to where you’re going, you have to walk in the other direction.

Alice is then invited into a chess game with a queen, with the promise that if she wins, she herself can be a queen. In the end, having won, she finds that power is unsatisfying and petty. It is an alternate reflection of what would actually make her happy. She’s gone in the wrong direction.

APPLICATION

Those are Jesus’ Kingdom instructions. If you want to get to life, you have to walk towards death.  If you want to get to freedom, you have to walk towards powerlessness. If you want to get to eternity, you have to take up your cross.

"Whoever finds their life will lose it, and whoever loses their life for my sake will find it" (Matthew 10:39).

Eating Mom for Lunch

Motherhood Co-Dependency Sacrifice

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2015-05-12

Scripture: 2 Corinthians 12:15

Author: Walt Bonner / Illustration Exchange
1

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NBA's Kevin Durant Says Mom Is the Real MVP

Motherhood Sacrifice Legacy

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2015-05-07

Scripture: Proverbs 31:27

Author: Illustration Exchange
20

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Lent Quotes

Lent Quotes Sacrifice Repentance

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2015-04-18

Scripture: Various

Author: Various
1

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We Lepers

Evangelism Empathy Sacrifice

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2015-03-16

Scripture: Matthew 10:39

Author: URBANA.org
5

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The Cost of Doing Something

Humor Sacrifice Discipleship

Contributed By: Steve Clark | Date Posted: 2015-02-09

Scripture: Luke 14:28

Author: Unknown
4

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One Billion Dollars Make Ted Turner No Poorer

Wealth Giving Sacrifice

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2015-02-08

Scripture: Luke 21:1 ; 2 Samuel 24:24

Author: Illustration Exchange
9

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John McCain Thanks Kissinger for Saving His Honor

Honor Sacrifice Jesus' Humility

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2015-01-30

Scripture: Philippians 2:6 ; Revelation 5:12

Author: Illustration Exchange
1

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