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Illustrations

  • To Illustrate: Gossip

    J. Michael Shannon
    In a particular church they had a lady who was known to be the town gossip.
  • To Illustrate: Empathy/Sympathy

    J. Michael Shannon
    Harold and Don Reid, two of the legendary Statler Brothers, tell a wonderful story in their book Random Memories.
  • To Illustrate: Communion

    Robert Shannon
    People use a lot of big words when they speak of Communion.
  • To Illustrate: Atonement

    J. Michael Shannon
    Recently China announced the opening of what they call the "world’s longest sea bridge."
  • To Illustrate: Atonement

    J. Michael Shannon
    According to a Ripley’s column, there is a Shinto ceremony where people feed the alcohol drink sake to carps and then release the fish, believing they will swim away, carrying the troubles of the person who released them.
  • Humility

    An elderly minister who survived the great Johnstown Flood of 1889 loved to regale audiences with tales of that harrowing event. When he died and went to heaven, he found himself in a meeting of saints who were sharing their life experiences. He took St. Peter aside and asked if he could tell about surviving the Johnstown Flood. Peter hesitated, then said, "Well, you can tell your story, but just keep in mind that Brother Noah will be in the audience...
  • Church

    J. Michael Shannon
    In the basement of America’s largest home, the Biltmore mansion in Asheville, North Carolina, you can see a model of the struc­ture. The model was completed first as a guide to build the home...
  • Greed

    Greed According an old fable, attributed to Aesop, a dog was carrying a bone as he crossed a bridge. He looked into the water and saw his own reflection...
  • Preaching for Life Change

    Rick Warren
    Preaching for Life Change Are there some particular insights you’ve gained during the years that help you preach for life change?
  • To Illustrate: Worship

    J. Michael Shannon
    In a recent “Dennis the Menace” comic, Dennis is seated in church beside his father. He looks up and says, “Is it OK if we leave at half time?”
  • To Illustrate: Wealth

    J. Michael Shannon
    It is reported that Abraham Lincoln once said, “You can see what God thinks of money when you see the people He gives it to.”
  • To Illustrate: Swearing

    J. Michael Shannon
    News reports recently told of something unusual in South Pasadena, California. The city council adopted a resolution calling for one week off from swearing.
  • To Illustrate: Sacrifice

    J. Michael Shannon
    Nathaniel Greene was one of the most celebrated generals in the American Revolution. He was a favorite of General George Washington.
  • To Illustrate: Serendipity

    J. Michael Shannon
    In 1820, a man named Yorgos was digging in his field on the island of Milos in Greece. As he was digging, he hit upon some stones.
  • To Illustrate: Perseverence

    J. Michael Shannon
    Dustin Carter is an extraordinary athlete. He finished his high school wrestling career with a 40-4 record. While he made it to the Ohio state championship, he did not win.
  • To Illustrate: Optimism

    J. Michael Shannon
    Motivational speaker Jack Canfield likes to remind people of an incident in the life of Ty Cobb ...
  • To Illustrate: Grace

    J. Michael Shannon
    In one of Bishop Fulton Sheen’s books, he made an interesting observation about Christianity. He said, “In other religions, one must be purified before he can knock at the door. In Christianity, one knocks at the door as a sinner, and He who answers us, heals.” If that is not good news, I don’t know what is.
  • To Illustrate: Evangelism

    J. Michael Shannon
    There is an old story about how the University of Chicago received a million-dollar grant from the heiress of a major department store. She had been a student at Northwest. So, administrators of Northwest went to visit her and asked why she had not made such a gift to her alma mater. Her answer was simple, “The people at the University of Chicago asked. You did not.”
  • To Illustrate: Discipleship

    J. Michael Shannon
    Herb Miller used to tell a story about a man whose daughter was applying to an Ivy League school. In a questionnaire sent by the school, he was asked if his daughter was a leader. He answered honestly, “I’m not sure about that, but she is an excellent follower.” The man received a letter back from the president of the college that said, “Our freshman class next fall is expected to contain several hundred leaders. We congratulate ourselves on the acceptance of your daughter as a member of the class. We shall thus be assured of having one good follower in the group.”
  • To Illustrate: Conflict

    J. Michael Shannon
    Two writers who were bitter rivals were both attending the same party. One had recently had a book published, and the other commented to him, “I read your new book, and liked it. Who wrote it for you?” The other replied, “I’m glad you liked the book—who read it to you?”