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Compartmentalized Christianity

Christlikeness Priorities Calling

Source: "Don’t Compartmentalize Your Christianity" by Paul Tripp, posted, 1-29-20, retrieved 6/4/23

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Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2023-06-04

Scripture: 2 Corinthians 5:20 ; Matthew 6:24

Author: Paul Tripp


"The next time you’re standing in your kitchen, bedroom, or at your desk, I want you to look at drawers. Yes, drawers. ...

"Sadly, many people who call themselves Christians live functionally compartmentalized lives. Whether they realize it or not, they have divided their lives neatly into two drawers: real life and spiritual life.

"The real life drawer is the one they dig into frequently and are most comfortable with. It contains all the stuff of everyday life, like their job, physical health, friends and family, leisure, money, possessions, and daily routine.

"This drawer dominates their thinking and their doing. It’s where they expend most of their emotional and physical energy, and where most dreams will be realized or dashed. ...

"Then they have a second drawer—the spiritual life drawer. All the “God” stuff goes here. It’s the drawer for Sunday worship, small group, tithes and offerings, short-term missions trips, and the evangelistic conversations with neighbors or extended family members.

"Yes, they believe in Jesus, his forgiveness, and the eternity to come, but these beliefs don’t have a radical impact on the way they think about themselves and life in general. Their faith is an aspect of their life, but not something that shapes everything in their life ... "


"Ask yourself: on any given day, what most influences the way that I think about myself and my life? What is the driving factor for the majority of what I think, say, and do?

"The biblical narrative and worldview only has one drawer—it’s called the gospel in everyday life. Everything goes in that drawer! Scripture asserts that you were bought with a price (the life and death of Jesus), so you don’t belong to you anymore. (Actually, because of creation, you never did belong to you!)

"God has a radical, single-drawer purpose for your life. The best word for that purpose is ambassador (see 2 Corinthians 5:20). The only thing an ambassador does is represent the ruler who sent them—every day, all the time, in everything you do.

"Therefore, your purpose in life is to make the invisible presence of Jesus visible in the lives of others. You are the look on Christ’s face. You are the tone of his voice. You are the touch of his hands. You are the physical representative of his grace.

"This is your mission in every situation, location, and relationship of your life—to make the grace of the invisible King visible. ..."

"We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God" (2 Corinthians 5:20, NIV).

“No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money" (Matthew 6:24, ESV).

Some Things Just Aren't Worth Chasing After

Priorities Balance Idolatry

Source: "California woman falls head first into vault toilet while trying to retrieve phone, requires two fire departments to pull her out," by Harriet Rigby, published, retrieved 4/22/22

Link to Source: Click here to view source

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2022-05-31

Scripture: Luke 12:34 ; Exodus 20:3

Author: Illustration Exchange


Have you noticed how important our phones have become to all of us. We tend to joke that we feel naked if we don’t have them on our person at all times. Some of us have become so dependent on them that we’re willing to go to great lengths (and falls!) to not be separated from them.

Such was the case when a woman recently dropped her phone in an outhouse latrine at the Olympic National Forest in Washington state. 

First, she tried reaching in for it. Then she tried using her dog’s leash to fish it out. When that failed, she dismantled the seat, tried using the leash as a lifeline, and leaned into the hole to dig deeper. And that’s when it happened …

The entire rigging gave way and she plunged head first into the cesspool of waste below. Thankfully, somehow, she found her phone in all that muck and managed to phone 911 for help. But it took two different fire departments considerable time to retrieve her. 

The Fire Department medics cautioned her of the health risks of her exposure and contamination, but she declined treatment, opting to just go home in humiliation.


It seems that that which we love, we pursue, but often to our peril — phones, technology, money, even other people. 

We must stop and ask ourselves, “Is it worth it?” Will pursuit of this priority bring me health and happiness, or danger and destruction?

Life is a balancing act. Phones can be good things, helpful things. Diving into sewage to save one, not so much.

“For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also” (Luke 12:34, ESV).

“You shall have no other gods before me” (Exodus 20:3, ESV).

Where Your Treasure Is

Stewardship Priorities Sanctification

Source: Yahoo! News

Link to Source: Click here to view source

Contributed By: Kikeh Anthony | Date Posted: 2021-07-24

Scripture: Matthew 6:21 ; Acts 14:15

Author: Kikeh Anthony - Application by I.E.


On a hot, July summer day in 2021, a man discovered some 158 bowling balls in his backyard during an outdoor renovation. It was during the demolition, around the back steps of his house, that Olson discovered a black sphere buried in the sand behind some cinder blocks.

"That was one of the bowling balls," he said. "I didn't think a whole lot of it. I was kind of assuming maybe there were just a couple in there just to fill in. The deeper I got into it, the more I realized it was just basically an entire gridwork of them making up the weight in there."

As Olson continued digging, he uncovered ball after ball. It finally clicked how this treasure of rusted, cracked, dirty balls got there. There used to be a bowling ball manufacturing plant nearby in Muskegon, Michigan.

The balls were from the 1950s, which meant they were 80 years old.  Although useless as bowling balls, they still had value to some. Olson plans to use the balls as edging for his landscaping or to make sculptures.  He has also donated eight balls for use by a church in a bowling ball cannon at a pig roast. His stepfather also plans to use them as custom furniture legs. 


In this story, it was the heart of the recipient that determined the value of the treasure.   One saw edging for their landscaping, another a bowling ball cannon, and yet another, legs for their furniture.  The point is the real value isn't in the treasure we unearth but in how we use it.  

Jesus said, "For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also" (Matthew 6:21).  



Influence Priorities Legacy

Contributed By: James Miller | Date Posted: 2018-05-26

Scripture: 1 Peter 4:10

Author: Dennis Hevesi

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When Are You Going To Die?

Gratitude Mortality Priorities

Contributed By: Charles Krieg | Date Posted: 2017-10-12

Scripture: Psalms 90:12

Author: Charles Krieg

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A Lesson In Stacking Priorities

Priorities Love for God Success

Contributed By: Jason Sommerfeldt | Date Posted: 2017-10-07

Scripture: Matthew 22:37 ; Matthew 6:33

Author: Jason Sommerfeldt

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Getting Your Digital Life In Order

Eternal Life Worldly Mindset Priorities

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2017-05-30

Scripture: Matthew 6:33

Author: Illustration Exchange

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What Happens When You Double A Penny Everyday For 30 Days?

Faithfulness Priorities Reward

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2017-05-03

Scripture: Matthew 6:20

Author: Illustration Exchange

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Joy Ride

Great Commission Priorities Church Health/Growth

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2016-09-06

Scripture: Matthew 28:19 ; 1 Corinthians 9:2

Author: Illustration Exchange

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Judging By The Wrong Standards

Judging Legalism Priorities

Contributed By: Geoff Follas | Date Posted: 2016-02-22

Scripture: Proverbs 4:23 ; Luke 6:45

Author: Geoff Follas

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