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Don't Cry Over Spoiled Milk

Mistakes Perspective Spiritual Growth

Source: Facebook post from poster The Great Peter

Link to Source: Click here to view source

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2024-06-12

Scripture: Philippians 3:14 ; 2 Corinthians 12:9

Author: Illustration Exchange
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ILLUSTRATION

Spoiled milk. It’s stinky, and nasty, and can curdle your stomach as much or more than the curds you see floating in the jug. 

But spoiled milk isn’t always such a bad thing. One Facebook blogger had thoughts:

If milk goes “bad,” it can become yoghurt. Yoghurt is more valuable than milk. 

If it gets even worse, it can turn into cheese. Cheese is more valuable than both yoghurt and milk. 

And it’s not just spoiled milk that can morph into things of greater value:

  • - If grape juice turns sour, it can ferment and transform into wine
  • - Christopher Columbus made a navigational error that lead him to discover America
  • - Alexander Fleming’s mistake led him to invent penicillin, saving countless lives since

APPLICATION

You are not bad because you made mistakes or experienced failures. Mistakes are the experiences that make you more valuable as a person. 

[So], don’t let your mistakes get you down. It is not just the practice that makes perfect. It’s also the mistakes we learn from that make perfect!  

As the great inventor Thomas Edison once said, when asked about his many failed attempts at innovation, “I have not failed 10,000 times—I’ve successfully found 10,000 ways that will not work.”

"Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus" (Philippians 3:13-14, ESV).

"But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me" (2 Corinthians 12:9, ESV).

"For the righteous falls seven times and rises again, but the wicked stumble in times of calamity" (Proverbs 24:16, ESV).

Divine Eyewear

Perspective Spiritual Warfare Word of God

Source: Space.com

Link to Source: Click here to view source

Contributed By: David Stough | Date Posted: 2024-06-07

Scripture: Psalms 119:18 ; Hebrews 4:12

Author: David Stough
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ILLUSTRATION

On April 8, 2024, the world stood in awe as God put on a great, cosmic show in the form of a total eclipse of the sun.

According to NASA and Space.org,

The great North American total solar eclipse of April 8 [2024] is over, but remember: Never observe the sun without proper protection. Get a pair of safe solar eclipse glasses from reputable dealers ... to ensure you and your family remain safe when observing future solar eclipses.

If you were actually going to see the moon eclipse the sun you had to put on a pair of specially made glasses. If you decided you were going to do it your way to look at the eclipse without proper eyewear, not only would it appear as nothing more than a big, bright blur, but your eyes would stand to suffer severe damage.

So in other words, to observe the sun, you need special glasses to not only see clearly, but to see safely.

APPLICATION

In much the same way, we need God's spiritual glasses to clearly see Him and the world of activity, circumstances, and experiences all around us. 

Our spiritual eyes were opened the day He touched us and we believed, but the need for us to daily see His will in our lives requires us to put on the glasses He has provided in His word.

The problem we all have, even if we are already believers in Christ, is that we have a distorted view of what God wants us to see. We go through life ignoring divine perspective. 

As we face trials of all sorts that cause us pain, or aggravation, or even anger in us, we struggle to make sense of it all. Yet here are spiritual battles going on all around us. If we could physically see the spiritual world, we would be like the shepherds who saw the angels at Christ's birth and were greatly afraid. We are a part of a greater reality than our 5 senses can perceive. 

Only in putting on the glasses of divine perspective, afforded through the Word of God, can we clearly (and safely!) navigate the challenges of life. 

"Open my eyes [to spiritual truth] so that I may behold Wonderful things from Your law" (Psalms 119:18, Amplified Bible).

"For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart" (Hebrews 4:12, ESV).

 

 

This Too Shall Pass

Wisdom Depression Perspective

Source: "This Too Shall Pass: Tracing an Ancient Jewish Folktal" by Avi Solomon, published Learning for Life, 4/25/13, retrieved 5/13/24

Link to Source: Click here to view source

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2024-05-14

Scripture: 2 Corinthians 4:18

Author: Illustration Exchange
3

ILLUSTRATION

Jewish commentator Avi Solomon asks this question ...

What do Abraham Lincoln, The Ben Ish Chai from Baghdad, Fariduddin Attar, and Anton Chekhov have in common?

It turns out to be a special fondness for an ancient Jewish folktale, which goes like this:

'King Solomon once searched for a cure against depression. He assembled his wise men together. They meditated for a long time and gave him the following advice: Make yourself a ring and have thereon engraved the words 'This too will pass.' The King carried out the advice. He had the ring made and wore it constantly. Every time he felt sad and depressed, he looked at the ring, whereon his mood would change and he would feel cheerful.'— Israel Folklore Archive # 126

Solomon goes on to say how the folk tale and the phrase, "This too shall pass," Gam Zeh Yaavor in Hebrew, morphed and spread throughout the world and over the centuries, with a version of the tale eventually even making its way into a speech by President Abraham Lincoln:

It is said an Eastern monarch once charged his wise men to invent him a sentence, to be ever in view, and which should be true and appropriate in all times and situations. They presented him the words: 'And this, too, shall pass away.' How much it expresses! How chastening in the hour of pride! How consoling in the depths of affliction!’ — An Address by Abraham Lincoln Before the Wisconsin State Agricultural Society, September 30, 1859

APPLICATION

Solomon concludes:

It is easy to have recourse to the consolatory phrase 'This, too, shall pass' in times of trouble and distress, but the trick lies in remembering the phrase during the good and happy times, when it is a potent reminder to value and live life to the full.

Look to the ring and you will become wise as Solomon or Lincoln!

And it's not just the remembrance of the phrase Solomon finds impactful; it's the wearing of the ring itself, which he says "has a powerful emotionally therapeutic effect and acts as a perpetual memento vita, reminding one to appreciate and celebrate every passing moment."

It's THE perfect phrase, true at ALL time in ALL situations.

In tough times, let this timeless truth bring you hope and encouragement. In good times let it ground you in humility, for even that which is good today may quite suddenly fade and whither.

"As we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal " (2 Corinthians 4:18, ESV).

 

Pursuing Unity in a Divided World

Unity Divisiveness Perspective

Contributed By: Chris Huff | Date Posted: 2024-01-10

Scripture: Ephesians 1:10 ; Ephesians 2:14

Author: Chris Huff
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A New Perspective

Perspective Teachability Patience

Contributed By: James Augustine | Date Posted: 2021-02-22

Scripture: Psalms 8:1 ; Psalms 8:4

Author: James Augustine
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The Man In The Iron Mask

Affliction Spiritual Growth Perspective

Contributed By: Shane Waldron | Date Posted: 2020-12-15

Scripture: Isaiah 46:10 ; Isaiah 48:3

Author: Shane Waldron
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Bring A Better Face

Attitude Christlikeness Perspective

Contributed By: Kevin Truett | Date Posted: 2019-10-17

Scripture: Ephesians 4:31 ; Romans 13:14

Author: Kevin Truett
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Fix Your Eyes On Jesus

Perspective Trials Jesus, Good Shepherd

Contributed By: Rob Tucker | Date Posted: 2018-01-08

Scripture: Hebrews 12:2

Author: Rob Tucker
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Walk A Mile In My Hospital Shoes

Compassion Perspective Leadership

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2016-12-13

Scripture: Matthew 7:12

Author: Illustration Exchange
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God Is Watching You

God's Omnipresence Perspective Motivation

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2016-11-18

Scripture: 2 Corinthians 2:17 ; Hebrews 4:13

Author: Illustration Exchange
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