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Dig Out the Dying

Evangelism Heroism Hopelessness

Source: “Dramatic Moment Skier Rescued a Snowboarder Who Was Buried Head First in Snow and Running Out of Air” By Andy Corbley, published goodnewsnetwork.org Apr 5, 2023, retrieved 4/12/23

Link to Source: Click here to view source

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2023-04-12

Scripture: Luke 10:33 ; Mark 16:15

Author: Illustration Exchange
10

ILLUSTRATION

Skier Francis Zuber was zipping down the tree lined slopes of Mt. Baker in northwestern Washington state when he lost control and ended up toppling into the deep powder off the trail. As he worked to right himself, he noticed a snow board protruding from a deep drift. This alone was an unusual sight. But crazier still, the board was moving!

It took him only moments to realize that someone was attached to that board, but apparently buried upside down under the depths of the drift.

He worked quickly to take off his skis so he could make his way to the stranded snowboarder, where he then began feverishly digging to extricate him. Breathless and weary, he just kept scraping at the snow looking for any signs of life. He eventually pulled out a small, yellow rescue shovel (that's one well prepared skier!) to enhance his efforts.

“Hold on! I’m coming! … Hey, you gonna be alright? Can you hear me?”

As he freed the trapped boarder's arms, he exclaimed, “Come on! Help me out! You okay? You alright?”

When he finally reached and uncovered the victim’s helmet, he said with relief, “Okay, you’re good. You’re good. I gotcha. You okay? Can you breathe?

A quiet “yeah” can be heard from beneath the helmet.

“Okay” said Zuber breathlessly, “we’re both gonna just catch our breath and then I’m gonna dig you out, okay?”

Though faint and weak, one can hear the gratitude in the simple, relieved reply, “Thank you.”

Zuber, an unlikely and unexpected hero, stepped up to rescue a stranger from certain death.

We only have such clear and comprehensive details of the harrowing rescue because Zuber was wearing a sports camera on his helmet, recording every moment.

Be sure to click here to watch the heart-pounding video in its entirety.

APPLICATION

Like an exuberant skier, we go zipping over the rough and tumble slopes of this life, so engrossed in our own thrills (and spills), that we fail to notice the mass of humanity all around us, buried upside down in the drifts of life — dying people “stuck” in despair, hopelessness, full of fear and regret, feeling utterly alone and invisible.

No doubt that’s how the bruised and beaten man felt, left for dead by robbers on the road from Jericho to Jerusalem, as he lay dying in the street. Many passed by him, walked around him, ignored him. Then one man finally noticed him, took pity, and stepped in to help.

“… and when he saw him, he took pity on him. He went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he put the man on his own donkey, brought him to an inn and took care of him” (Luke 10:33b-34, NIV).

An unlikely, unexpected hero, the Samaritan, stepped up to save a dying man.

Does God call us to anything less? No! In fact, He calls us to something more. He calls us to not just “happen” upon these dying ones, but actively, intentionally, purposefully keep our eyes peeled for them, peeled for any signs of life, so that we can jump into action to offer them a life line — the good news of the Gospel.

Don’t turn a blind eye. Be a hero! Look for those whose lives are buried under the burdens of life without Jesus. And with the same feverish urgency and intensity of Francis Zuber, go dig them out!

Then listen for the breathless, relieved reply ... "Thank you."

"He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation" (Mark 16:15, NIV).

"How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them?" (Romans 10:14, NIV).

Eudardo, Come and Find Juan Cruz!

Evangelism Community Church/Body of Christ

Source: YouTube Video and “Who is Eduardo, Juan Cruz’s father” published on TrendDetail.com, September, retrieved 9/27/22

Link to Source: Click here to view source

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2022-09-29

Scripture: Luke 19:10 ; Matthew 9:37

Author: Illustration Exchange
6

ILLUSTRATION

When a young boy became separated from his father on the streets of a busy Argentinian city last month, a concerned pedestrian promptly came to attend to him. He asked him his name and his father’s name. He then hoisted the young man onto his shoulders and began crying out, “Eduardo, come and find Juan Cruz!”

It wasn’t long before all the diners and pedestrians in the busy square began chanting aloud with him, “Eduardo, come and find Jaun Cruz!”

Soon, even a street band took up the call, quickly turning the chant into a song, and playing along with all the concerned citizens, singing together, “Eduardo, come and find Juan Cruz!”

Panic turned to comfort, encouragement, and support. It turned into a collective mission, as the entire community banded together to reunite young Juan Cruz with his father.

And it worked! Dad heard the commotion, followed the sound of the chants, zeroed in on the location, and ran to gather his son into his arms.

Click here to watch the full video.

APPLICATION

What is the Great Commission, what is our mission, if not to help lost souls to find their way back to their heavenly Father?  To this end, the Christian Church must band together with the same passion, purpose, and collective mission as the diners and pedestrians who chanted, “Eduardo, come and find Jaun Cruz!”

What would happen if we united in solidarity with one another to pray for, and minister to, and witness to each other’s lost family members, neighbors, friends, even strangers, hoisting them up on our shoulders, so to speak, to give them a view of the Father? Calling the Father to come and find them! Praying together, with each other and for each other, “Father, come and find my brother! Joe’s neighbor! Sharon’s employer!”

Lord, give us, your Church, as much passion for the lost as that crowd had for little Juan Cruz to be reunited with his father.

“For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost” Luke 19:10, ESV).

“What man of you, having a hundred sheep, if he has lost one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the open country, and go after the one that is lost, until he finds it? And when he has found it, he lays it on his shoulders, rejoicing. And when he comes home, he calls together his friends and his neighbors, saying to them, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep that was lost.’ Just so, I tell you, there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who need no repentance” (Luke 15:4 - 7, ESV).

“Then he said to his disciples, ‘The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few; therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest’” (Matthew 9:37, ESV).

A Passion for Barney

Passion Influence Evangelism

Contributed By: Rob Tucker | Date Posted: 2018-02-20

Scripture: John 1:45 ; John 4:29

Author: Rob Tucker
6

ILLUSTRATION

My kids used to watch Barney growing up. I could not stand that show! The songs, the purple dinosaur, it all seemed like too much. A funny thing would happen though. We would start watching it together, and before long I would look around to find I was the only person in the living room still watching the show!  (All parents can relate to this!)

Of course, I wouldn't have even turned the show on if it weren't for them. Funny how the passions of others can begin to bleed over to us.

APPLICATION

As Christ followers, others see our passion for Christ. In time, our passion influences those who are exposed to it, whether or not they started out with an interest in spiritual things. 

"Philip went to look for Nathanael and told him, "We have found the very person Moses and the prophets wrote about! His name is Jesus, the son of Joseph from Nazareth" (John 1:45, NLT). 

"Come, see a man who told me everything I ever did. Could this be the Messiah?" (John 4:29). 

Fishing For A Friend?

Loneliness Evangelism Friendship

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2017-11-09

Scripture: Matthew 4:19

Author: Illustration Exchange
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Sharing Trade Secrets Or Sharing The Wealth?

Outreach Evangelism Unity

Contributed By: Neal Pollard | Date Posted: 2017-08-03

Scripture: Philippians 1:18

Author: Neal Pollard
5

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Are You A Hypermiler?

Evangelism Discipline (Self) Goal Setting

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2016-08-24

Scripture: 1 Corinthians 9:22 ; Hebrews 12:2

Author: Illustration Exchange
6

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The Search is On

Evangelism Missions Priorities

Contributed By: James Miller | Date Posted: 2016-02-14

Scripture: Matthew 28:16 ; Luke 15:1

Author: Daniel Levitin
6

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A Winning Recipe

Evangelism Compassion Outreach

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2015-12-27

Scripture: 1 Corinthians 9:22

Author: Illustration Exchange
8

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Are You A Tare Or A Wheat?

Salvation Self-examination Evangelism

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2015-12-07

Scripture: Matthew 13: ; Matthew 7:14

Author: Mitchell Dillon
16

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The Crusader's Rifle

Gospel Evangelism Eternal Life

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2015-10-09

Scripture: Hebrews 4:12 ; 1 Peter 1:23

Author: Illustration Exchange
6

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