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Sacred Melons

Spiritual Growth Temptation Obstacles

Source: Info Barrel and FASCINATING FACTS by David Louis, p. 56.

Link to Source: Click here to view source

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2014-07-25

Scripture: John 15:1 ; John 15:5

Author: Illustration Exchange
9

ILLUSTRATION

In Japan, melons are considered luxurious, even sacred. While a common cantaloupe melon might set you back two or three dollars here in the states, it could easily run upwards of $15 dollars in Japan. Specialty melons sometimes sell for hundreds of dollars a piece. The gift of a meticulously cultivated melon is considered one of great generosity and respect.

Japanese “master” melon growers take tremendous pride in growing only the best melons. To ensure success, they “hand pollinate three flowers and let them get to about the size of a baseball, then select the best one and let only that one grow. The others are chopped up and added to the compost pile.” In this way, a single fruit receives all the nutrients originally meant for the entire plant. The result—a sublimely succulent, “best possible” melon. 

APPLICATION

The master melon growers of Japan have learned the secret of growing the "best possible" melon--channeling all of the nutrients to just one selected fruit. They do this to produce something they prize, something they consider sacred.

Likewise, God knows the secret to helping you to become the "best possible" you. As the Master Grower, He seeks to remove everything from your life that might prevent you from receiving the fullest measure of His growth producing love.

Every call to repentance, every warning against sin, every word of caution concerning temptation are all set forth in the Bible to prevent anything from competing with your spiritual growth potential. Once these things are removed, chopped up and added to the compost pile, you are free to receive all the nutrients necessary for God to cultivate something He prizes, something sacred--the "best possible" you!

"I am the true grapevine, and my Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch of mine that doesn't produce fruit, and he prunes the branches that do bear fruit so they will produce even more . . . Yes, I (Jesus) am the vine; you are the branches. Those who remain in me, and I in them, will produce much fruit. For apart from me you can do nothing" (John 15:1-2, 5, NLT).

Merging Into Greatness

Obstacles Greatness Potential

Source: THE QUEST FOR CHARACTER by Charles Swindoll, p. 85

Link to Source: Click here to view source

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2012-12-20

Scripture: 2 Timothy 1:6

Author: Variously attributed to columnist Dear Abbey, auth
7

ILLUSTRATION

Some of the world’s greatest men and women have been saddled with disabilities and adversities but have managed to overcome them.

Cripple him, and you have a Sir Walter Scott.
Lock him in a prison cell, and you have a John Bunyan.
Bury him in the snows of Valley Forge, and you have a George Washington.
Raise him in abject poverty, and you have an Abraham Lincoln.
Subject him to bitter religious prejudice, and you have a Benjamin Disraeli.
Strike him down with infantile paralysis, and he becomes a Franklin D. Roosevelt.
Burn him so severely in a schoolhouse fire that the doctors say he will never walk again, and you have a Glenn Cunningham, who set a world’s record in 1934 for running a mile in 4 minutes, 6.7 seconds.
Deafen a genius composer, and you have a Ludwig van Beethoven.
Have him or her born Black in a society filled with racial discrimination, and you have a Booker T. Washington, a Harriet Tubman, a Marian Anderson, or a George Washington Carver.
Make him the first child to survive in a poor Italian family of eighteen children, and you have an Enrico Caruso.
Have him born of parents who survived a Nazi concentration camp, paralyze him from the waist down when he is four, and you have an incomparable concert violinist, Itzhak Perlman.
Call him a slow learner, “retarded,” and write him off as ineducable, and you have an Albert Einstein.

APPLICATION

Says pastor and author Chuck Swindoll of their efforts:

Some have merged into greatness despite adversity. They refuse to listen to their fears. Nothing anyone says or does holds them back. Disabilities and disappointments need not disqualify!

Dr. Charles R. Swindoll has served as pastor of some of our nation’s most prominent churches, chancellor of Dallas Theological Seminary, and Bible teacher on the internationally syndicated radio program Insight for Living. He has written more than thirty best-selling books, including STRENGTHENING YOUR GRIP, LAUGH AGAIN, THE GRACE AWAKENING, and the million-selling GREAT LIVES FROM GOD'S WORD series.

"This is why I remind you to fan into flames the spiritual gift God gave you when I laid my hands on you. For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline" (2 Timothy 1:6-7).

A Donkey In The Well

Persistence Victory Obstacles

Source: various

Contributed By: Barnett Gushin | Date Posted: 2012-11-29

Author: unknown
7

ILLUSTRATION

One day a farmer's donkey fell down into a well. The animal cried piteously for hours as the farmer tried to figure out what to do. Finally he decided the animal was old, and the well needed to be covered up anyway, it just wasn't worth it to retrieve the donkey. He invited all his neighbors to come over and help him. They each grabbed a shovel and began to shovel dirt into the well. At first, the donkey realized what was happening and cried horribly. Then, to everyone's amazement, he quieted down. A few shovel loads later, the farmer looked down the well, and was astonished at what he saw. As every shovel of dirt hit his back, the donkey did something amazing. He would shake it off and take a step up. As the farmer's neighbors continued to shovel dirt on top of the animal, he would shake it off and take a step up. Pretty soon, everyone was amazed, as the donkey stepped up over the edge of the well and trotted off.

APPLICATION

Every trouble in life can be shaking off and turned into a stepping stone. Do that enough times and you will soon dig yourself out of the deepest of wells.

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

also, "As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good" (Genesis 5:20).

Illustration Exchange

The Difference Between Impossible and Improbable

Obstacles Doubt God's Provision

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2012-10-24

Scripture: Matthew 19:26 ; Luke 1:37

Author: unknown
7

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Overcoming Physical Disability

Obstacles Success Grace

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2012-09-21

Scripture: 2 Corinthians 12:9 ; Philippians 4:13

Author: Illustration Exchange
2

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Fix Your Eyes On Jesus

Obstacles Fear Goal Setting

Contributed By: Barnett Gushin | Date Posted: 2012-06-05

Scripture: Hebrews 12:2

Author: Henry Ford
5

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Interconnected Idols

Idolatry Pride Temptation

Contributed By: Jason Seville | Date Posted: 2019-03-06

Scripture: Colossians 3:5 ; Ephesians 4:22

Author: Jason Seville
3

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The Dark Side Of Winning The Lottery

Temptation Betrayal Jealousy

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2018-02-02

Scripture: 1 Timothy 6:10

Author: Illustration Exchange
8

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Don't Covet Your Neighbor's Lottery Win

Envy Witness Temptation

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2017-11-08

Scripture: Romans 11:14

Author: Illustration Exchange
3

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Where Have All The Bibles Gone?

Cultural Trends Faith Hardness of Heart

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2017-03-22

Author: Illustration Exchange
7

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