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Real Success Is Always Attainable

Success Discouragement Submission

Source: Stories To Touch The Heart by Russ Lawson, p. 65

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2021-10-01

Scripture: 1 Corinthians 3:8

Author: Mother Teresa / Illustration Exchange


"No, I do not become discouraged.  You see, God has not called me to a ministry of success. He has called me to a ministry of mercy."

- Mother Teresa


Mother Teresa possessed a clear understanding of God's priority versus the world's priorities.  She understood that real success is doing God's will. As a result, she was protected from two tragic errors: First, she avoided the temptation to waste her life on things that don't really matter. Second, she avoided the discouragement that comes from failing to experience the world's idea of success.

One of the wonderful things about living for God is that when we seek His will, we seek something that is always completely attainable.

Mother Teresa might have had cause to become discouraged if she had allowed the world to define success for her.  But, since she left that to God, success was always within her reach.  

"The one who plants and the one who waters have one purpose, and they will each be rewarded according to their own labor. For we are co-workers in God's service; you are God's field, God's building" (1 Corinthians 3:8-9).

Illustration Exchange

Getting Ahead of God

Guidance Patience Submission

Contributed By: James Augustine | Date Posted: 2020-05-10

Scripture: Psalms 139:24 ; Psalms 5:8

Author: James Augustine


My friend Mike retold this story in a training session many years ago. It seems he was out in the woods of his old homestead with his 8-year-old son. They were trekking through the woods that Mike had known like the back of his hand since he was the age of 8. He wanted to share these woods with his son, but his son kept on running on ahead of him. He would call out to him and say, "Son, I want you to go that way," pointing to the left. His son stopped and looked at the fork in the path and said, "What way dad?" 

Mike finally stood still and wanted to see how the situation would play out. He again pointed to the left and said, "That way!" 

"Which way, dad?"

"Son. I want you to stop and wait for me."

Mike's son then turned around and waited for his father to come up next to him, take his hand, and then proceed to lead him in the right direction.


Far too often, we as Christians tend to rush ahead of God. We want to get to the blessings, and we have no idea how to get there. And we rush ahead, with God all the while pointing in a direction and saying gently to us, "Go that way!" 

We respond with frustration because we are not following, but trying to force God's hand and have Him go the way we want to. But God's desire is for us to wait, to be patient, and allow Him to lead us where He wants us to go.

the psalmist in 139 asks God to "search me, know me, and lead me." God knows us and has searched us. But if we want to go where He wants us, we have to allow Him to lead us.

Rejecting Jesus' Authority

Jesus' Authority Submission Rebellion

Source: KFOR News

Link to Source: Click here to view source

Contributed By: Shane Waldron | Date Posted: 2019-10-12

Scripture: Proverbs 28:25 ; Jeremiah 17:7

Author: Shane Waldron


What should have been a routine traffic stop escalated into so much more. A 65-year-old woman named Debra Hamil was pulled over by a police officer in Oklahoma for a broken tail light. You can see on the video that the officer is respectful and cordial. But when he gives her the $80 ticket, she refuses to sign it. She doesn’t think she deserves to pay $80 for something that she can easily fix (even though she admits her tail light has been broken for six months). 

When the officer asks her to step out of the car, she swears at him, rolls up her window, and drives away. So the cop gets in his car and pursues her. He was on a mission to enforce the law. And nothing was going to keep him from accomplishing his mission.

So now we’re in a police chase. She ends up pulling over, but again she refuses to get out of the car. So he pulls her out. She kicks him. And so he tases her. Then he arrests her and takes her to jail. She is charged with assaulting a police officer, which is a felony

The police officer accomplished his mission, but he wasn’t happy about it. Debra Hamil ended up in a police chase, then she was tased, then she was arrested, and finally she was charged with a felony.  All over an $80 fine for a broken tail light. Her actions illustrate an important principle; things can only go from bad to worse when we reject authority.


Before I became a Christian, I hated the idea of a big authority figure in the sky telling me what to do. I didn’t want a God like that. Maybe that was true you, as well. And even though I am now a Christian, there are still ways I reject Jesus’ authority.  You and I reject him with every sin we commit. 

Similar to the police officer, Jesus is on a mission. But his mission involves more than just enforcing the law. Jesus is on a mission to save us from the consequences of our rebellion. We can either cooperate and reap the benefits of submitting to his will for our lives, or we can resist and make life much harder than it needs to be. 

"An arrogant man stirs up strife, But he who trusts in the LORD will prosper" (Proverbs 28:25). 

"But blessed is the one who trusts in the LORD, whose confidence is in him" (Jeremiah 17:7). 

"The Moscow Rules"

Satan Spiritual Warfare Submission

Contributed By: Neal Pollard | Date Posted: 2018-12-29

Scripture: James 4:7 ; 2 Corinthians 2:11

Author: Neal Pollard

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The Church Is The People

Unity Church/Body of Christ Submission

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2015-11-09

Scripture: 1 Corinthians 3:16

Author: Illustration Exchange

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Voluntary Suffering

Suffering Submission Worship

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2015-06-17

Scripture: 1 Corinthians 10:31

Author: C.S. Lewis / Mitchell Dillon

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From My Cold Dead Hands

Control Submission Die To Self

Contributed By: Mitchell Dillon | Date Posted: 2015-02-10

Scripture: Romans 5:12 ; Romans 8:13

Author: Mitchell Dillon

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Where Is Your Bethlehem

Christmas Submission Trust (In God)

Contributed By: Barnett Gushin | Date Posted: 2014-12-22

Scripture: Luke 2:4

Author: Marilyn Ehle

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Give and Receive with Both Hands Open

Giving God's Provision Submission

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

Author: Illustration Exchange

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It All Depends On Whose Hands It's In

Submission Servanthood Value (True Worth)

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2013-12-17

Scripture: Romans 12:1

Author: Illustration Exchange

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