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Calling Christlikeness Goals Image of God Love Meaning of Life Priorities Purpose Service Suffering

Reflecting Light Into Dark Places

During the Second World War, German paratroopers invaded the island of Crete. When they landed at Maleme, the islanders met them, bearing nothing other than kitchen knives and hay scythes. The consequences of resistance were devastating. The residents of entire villages were lined up and shot. Overlooking the airstrip today is an institute for peace […]

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Disappointment with God Faith God's Mystery God's Presence God's will Healing Sermon Illustrations Suffering

Your God is Too Big

Daniel Hans is a Presbyterian minister in the United States. In 1986 he and his wife Beth lost their three year old daughter Laura to cancer. Daniel and Beth watched in agony as their little girl faced nine hospitalisations and four separate operations in the last nine months of her life. Their hearts broke as […]

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Apologetics Belief Heaven Hope Sermon Illustrations Suffering

When Life Tumbles In

In 1927 the wife of Scottish preacher Arthur Gossip died suddenly. When he returned to the pulpit he preached a sermon titled “When Life Tumbles In, What Then?” In that sermon Gossip compared life to watching  a plane pass through the sky during wartime. There you are, lying on your back watching a plane fly […]

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Gratitude Perspective Sermon Illustrations Strength Suffering Thankfulness

Roy Camponella

Roy Campanella was one of the first African Americans to play in the US Baseball major leagues. In a distinguished career he won the Brooklyn Dodgers Most Valued Player award many times, and in 1955 was in the team that won the World Series. But in January 1958 his career was cut short after a […]

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God's Goodness Growth Sermon Illustrations Suffering

Learning God is Good

What should have been a joyous occasion turned into a nightmare of grief. Randy Hoyt watched helplessly as his wife Kris went into hospital for an emergency Caesarean section operation when only 5 months pregnant. The bleeding was tremendous. Kris required 30 units of blood. As the doctors battled to save her life Randy cried […]

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Healing Sermon Illustrations Suffering

Joni Erikson Tada

In the summer of 1967, Joni Erickson and her sister rode their horses to the Chesapeake Bay to go for a swim. The result was tragic. Joni dived into shallow water, struck her head on a rock and became a quadriplegic. She is paralysed from the neck down. During two years of often painful rehabilitation […]

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God's Presence God's will God's Work Problem of Evil Sermon Illustrations Suffering

Is God Punishing Us?

In December 1985 the United States NBC TV News ran a week long feature on it’s evening news program. The advertising in the lead up showed a child praying, “Our Father, who art in heaven, what about the earthquake in Mexico City, the Japan Airline crash that killed 520 people, the AIDS epidemic, and the […]

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Christ Incarnation Sermon Illustrations Suffering

At the End of Time

At the end of time, billions of people were scattered on a great plain before God’s throne. Most shrank back from the brilliant light before them. But some groups near the front talked heatedly – not with cringing shame, but with belligerence. ‘Can God judge us? How can he know about suffering?’ snapped a young […]

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Cross Doubt Sermon Illustrations Suffering

At the End of the Rope

Elie Wiesel was a survivor of the dreaded Nazi concentration camp Auschwitz. He wrote of his experiences in the book The Night. In that book he relates the harrowing story of two Jewish men and a Jewish boy hanged alongside one another. Having mounted the stairs the two adults cried, “long live liberty”, but the boy […]

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Heaven Hope Sermon Illustrations Suffering

Amistad

The movie Amistad tells the story of a group of African slaves who seize control of their slave-ship and demand to be returned to their homeland. The captain instead takes them to an American seaport where they are imprisoned. As they await the judge’s verdict one of the men, Yamba, sits in a corner of the prison […]

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Cross Empathy Sermon Illustrations Suffering

He Was a Jew Too

Kilmer Meyers was the pastor of a church in Manhattan, USA. One of the more disturbing aspects of his pastorate was a woman named Emma who used to stand outside the church every day at 4pm and scream insults at Jesus. Emma’s pain was understandable – she was a survivor of the Holocaust. One day […]