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The Heart And Soul of Christmas

Christmas Jesus, Savior Incarnation

Contributed By: Charles Krieg | Date Posted: 2018-12-29

Scripture: Luke 2:12 ; John 1:14

Author: Charles Krieg
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ILLUSTRATION

I have many happy memories of taking my Mom to Manhattan at Christmas time to look at the department store windows.  I will never forget the windows one store had one year. The first window had a scroll which read, "The Smell of Christmas is in the Kitchen." The scene was an old-fashioned kitchen with a black stove and food cooking on it.

The second window was titled, "The Taste of Christmas is in the Dining Room." There was a long table laden with mouth-watering food.

The third window showed a beautiful tree decorated with ornaments and lights, little toys and popcorn strings. The scroll read, "The Color of Christmas is in the Tree."

The fourth window scroll said, "The Sound of Christmas is in the Carols." This scene was a group of animated figures singing Christmas carols.

Then came the store's main entrance. I noticed that, after passing those windows, most people went into the store to do Christmas shopping.  However, if you ignored the entrance and kept on going, you would have seen one more window. The scroll in this window proclaimed: "But the Heart and Soul of Christmas is Here!" In this window was a stable with shepherds, wise men, Joseph, Mary, and the baby Jesus lying in a manger. 

APPLICATION

A lot of people miss the true meaning of Christmas. They get so caught up in the shopping, the food, the decorations, and the gifts, that they fail to see the heart and soul of Christmas: The story of the babe in the manger, of God with us!

"And this will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in swaddling clothes and lying in a manger" (Luke 2:12). 

A Day In The Life Of A Pastor

Jesus, Savior Salvation False Hope

Contributed By: Mitchell Dillon | Date Posted: 2018-05-15

Scripture: John 14:6

Author: Mitchell Dillon
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ILLUSTRATION

One of the essential responsibilities of the pastor is to visit the sick. Recently, I set out for the ICU to visit a man who was recovering from complications brought about by a heart attack. I arrived at the front desk only to be told by the nurse that he was upstairs for tests and wouldn't be down for a while, but that his daughter was in the room waiting for him to return. So I went in and introduced myself to her as the pastor of a church where her mother and father occasionally visit with friends.

She was thrilled to meet me and so appreciative that I would come to visit her dad. We hugged, then I assured her that there were a lot of people praying for her father. As we waited together we began to talk about the weather, grandchildren, how the Miami Heat were playing, etc. We were having a great time getting to know each other.

Finally, I asked her about a particular therapy I knew they had planned for her father. "My father isn't receiving that therapy," she said, tilting her head slightly and staring curiously at me.

"Oh, well...umm...," I fumbled, "I'm pretty sure that's what I was told."

Then she asked, "What was the last name of the man you came to visit today?"

Yikes! The receptionist had given me the room number of another man with the same first name as the man I was actually there to visit! Can you say AWKWARD! As I slinked out the door I profusely apologized for the misunderstanding.

APPLICATION

What is so interesting to me about this little mishap is the way it pointed out the significance of a shared relationship. We had connected over what we thought was a common relationship. Once that relationship was removed, the connection went with it.

Isn't that exactly what Jesus was warning us of when He said, "No one comes to the Father except through me" (John 14:6). Without a relationship with Jesus, we have no connection with the Father.

Mitchell Dillon, founder of Illustration Exchange

The Hidden Door

Witness Salvation Jesus, Savior

Link to Source: Click here to view source

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2018-04-21

Scripture: John 10:9

Author: Illustration Exchange
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ILLUSTRATION

Jason Barry, with CBS, reports:

Steve Humble is the founder of Creative Home Engineering in Gilbert. His company makes an assortment of secret doors that are used to hide secret rooms or closets in someone's house. His website's name -- HiddenPassageway.com -- basically says it all.

"We make doors that don't look like doors," said Humble. "It could look like a bookcase, or a dresser, or grandfather clock, or brick wall -- anything you can think of that isn't a door, ..."

Humble said that some of his clients want a secret door to hide a kids' play area or movie room. Others want a place to hide a large safe or some guns.

But personal safety is the No. 1 reason people call him.  High-end clients want custom-built panic or safe rooms where they can hide in case of a home invasion.

... All of the high-end secret doors open and close with a remote control that can be connected to anything around the house, which makes it kind of fun.

So fun, in fact, customers often have trouble keeping their secret rooms secret.

"The majority of clients come to us with the intention of telling no one, but it's not uncommon for them to be so proud and excited about it, they end up showing it off to the neighborhood," Humble said.

APPLICATION

People who build secret doors to secret rooms can’t wait to tell their neighbors, even though the rooms are supposed to be kept secret.  Are we, as Christians, as excited about telling people about the door that's not supposed to be kept a secret, the one that leads to life eternal? Jesus said, “I am the door. If anyone enters by me, he will be saved and will go in and out and find pasture” (John 10:9).

Really cool secrets are hard to keep.  What cooler secret is there than the “Door” that leads to heaven?

Jesus is Still the Only Way

Jesus, Savior Salvation Worldly Mindset

Contributed By: Seth Dillon | Date Posted: 2018-02-12

Scripture: John 14:6 ; John 3:16

Author: Seth Dillon
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Changed By The Arrival Of A Child

Christmas Incarnation Jesus, Savior

Contributed By: Howard Harden | Date Posted: 2018-01-24

Scripture: 1 John 4:19

Author: Howard Harden
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Never Try To Catch The Catcher

Grace (Pictures of) Jesus, Savior Works Salvation

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2017-08-01

Scripture: Acts 16:31 ; John 19:30

Author: Illustration Exchange
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Lunatic, Liar or Lord?

Jesus, Savior Apologetics Reputation

Contributed By: Tom Halloran | Date Posted: 2017-05-03

Scripture: John 14:6

Author: Tom Halloran
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Jesus Is The Trashman

Redemption Jesus, Savior Salvation

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2017-03-23

Scripture: Hebrews 10:11 ; John 1:29

Author: Illustration Exchange
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He Ain't Heavy, He's My Savior

Salvation Witness Jesus, Savior

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2016-06-07

Scripture: John 6:58

Author: Illustration Exchange
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Can't Improve On Jesus

Blood (of Jesus) Jesus, Savior Atonement

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2016-02-27

Scripture: Hebrews 10:10

Author: Illustration Exchange
5

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