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A Picture of Pure Love

Love for God God's Love New Birth

Contributed By: DEAN KAHLICH | Date Posted: 2019-05-19

Scripture: John 3:16 ; 1 John 4:19

Author: DEAN KAHLICH
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ILLUSTRATION

Have you ever watched a child when she receives a brand new puppy?  I don't know who's happier, the puppy or the child.  There is a mutual affection that has a purity and a simplicity to it, even though the relationship remains to be developed. 

APPLICATION

It's similar to when a person begins a relationship with our loving God.  It's thrilling and all-encompassing.  It's the beginning of a wonderful journey, one in which the love never ends and the relationship never stops growing and maturing. 

"We love because he first loved us" (1 John 4:19). 

The Incredible Seashell Rooster

Love for God Jesus' Sacrifice Human Worth

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2019-01-30

Scripture: 2 Corinthians 9:15 ; Hebrews 12:2

Author: Mitchell Dillon
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ILLUSTRATION

As a family in ministry, we often didn't get a lot of quality family time during the holidays. So we had a tradition of taking a post-Christmas family road trip to sunny Florida.  Along with a few gifts, each of our kids was given some cash and the opportunity, along the way, to pick out a few things for themselves. Inevitably, during these trips, we would end up in a south Florida gift shop.

It was during one of those gift shop stops that my youngest son, probably 6 or 7 years old at the time, first spotted an amazing rooster designed almost entirely out of seashells.  He was completely enamored by it. He was also convinced that I would love it as much as he did. 

So he took the seashell rooster to the man at the register to find out how much it would cost him.  After completely emptying his pockets of what was supposed to be his Christmas money, and some negotiation over the difference, he was so proud to walk away with that amazing seashell rooster for me, his father.

APPLICATION

From a practical point of view, I have never been given a more worthless gift. But when measured in terms of the sacrifice involved, I have never been given a more meaningful gift. In fact, of all of the gifts I've received over the years, the seashell rooster is still on my mantle. And its value to me only grows with time.

Although it serves no practical purpose, that rooster will always remind me of the time when my son completely forgot about himself, sacrificing all the money he had, in order to bless me. For that reason, it will always be one of my most valued possessions. 

Something similar happened two-thousand years ago when God forgot about Himself in order to bless us. But the gift of God's Son, sacrificed for us, would prove to be anything but impractical. Once received, it would pay for our sins, restore us to right fellowship with God, assure us of our true worth, bestow the promise of the resurrection, and grant us eternal citizenship in God's Kingdom. Receiving Jesus literally satisfies all of our deepest longings and all of our most essential needs.

And when this gift is measured in terms of the sacrifice involved, we see how profoundly wonderful it really is, for it represents the highest price that has ever been paid for anything. God was willing to make the greatest of all sacrifices for the joy of loving us.

You will never be offered a more meaningful gift. May the value that you place on this gift, and the joy that you find in Jesus, only grow in time.

"Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift!" (2 Corinthians 9:15).

"Because of the joy awaiting him, he endured the cross ..." (Hebrews 12:2).

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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ILLUSTRATION

Video games have been entertaining people for well over 35 years, and though there have been countless titles, there are only a handful that have left a lasting impression on the world. Some games, like Pac-Man and Super Mario Bros., have had great influence on several generations, but there is one game that stands out as a fun and immersive experience, and that is Tetris.

The way the game works is simple, the player is fed variants of four blocks, which must be arranged in rows.  When enough of them are lined up, they disappear. This opens up more space for more blocks to be stacked. As the game progresses, the blocks start dropping faster, making the game more challenging. 

APPLICATION

Hey, Tetris is fun, but for me, there is more to this game that just stacking pixels and trying not to allow them to stack up too high on the board. This game is a lesson on life because life is full of stacking. In fact, a huge part of life is learning how to stack responsibilities and priorities, knowing that once you eliminate one set, a new set will take its place shortly.  Being a young man juggling work, a mortgage, two kids, a spouse, school, housework, and daily tasks, learning the art of stacking has never been more important in my life. 

God is no stranger to the fact that life is a stacking game. In fact, He gives His children a set of priorities to follow. First, He lets His children know what is most important in the stack. When questioned by the Pharisees about which is the greatest commandment, Jesus simply replied: “To love the Lord your God with all of your heart and with all of your soul and with all of your mind” (Matthew 22:37). Right here, Jesus tells us how to stack our priorities. He doesn’t end there though, He also adds that the second greatest command is to “Love your neighbor as yourself” (Matthew 22:39). The main priority of this game we call life is a fervent love for God, followed by a fervent love for others.

If you find yourself playing a game of Tetris, take a few moments to look at how you are stacking things in your own life. As the blocks of responsibility and opportunity fall into your lap, how are you placing them in your life? As easy as it is, we have to stay away from making life all about entertainment, because the truth is that life is not all about entertainment; if that were the case God would have sent us an entertainer and not a Savior. Place God as your foundation, others as the next immediate priority, and your life will be stacked for real success.  

"But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well" (Matthew 6:33). 

The Bride Who Wears Her Wedding Gown Everyday

Marriage Valentine's Day Love for God

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2016-12-30

Scripture: Ecclesiastes 2:4 ; Ecclesiastes 2:6

Author: Illustration Exchange
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How NOT To Love Jesus

Obedience Love for God Hypocrisy

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2015-11-04

Scripture: John 14:15 ; Romans 2:13

Author: Selfie Dad, home produced video
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The Curse Of Being Cool

Worldliness Love for God Self-promoting

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2015-08-28

Scripture: 1 John 2:15 ; Matthew 5:5

Author: Illustration Exchange
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Do You Hear His Voice?

Hearing God's Voice Listening Love for God

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2014-06-21

Scripture: John 10:27

Author: Illustration Exchange
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The More I Get To Know People . . .

Self-examination Love for God Sin Nature

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2013-01-28

Scripture: Romans 5:6

Author: Mitchell Dillon
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We Give Thee But Thine Own

Gratitude Stewardship Love for God

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2012-07-30

Scripture: 1 Chronicles 29:14

Author: Illustration Exchange
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Send Abba Father a Card for Father's Day

Fatherhood God the Father Love for God

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2012-06-11

Scripture: Romans 8:15 ; Galatians 4:6

Author: Illustration Exchange
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