In the months following the devastating Asian tsunami of December 2004, an amazing story of survival emerged from Simeulue Island, the closest inhabited land to the epicenter of the earthquake.
Once during her reign, England’s Queen Victoria listened to a chaplain preach a sermon about the second coming of Christ. Those near the royal box noticed that the queen’s eyes were filled with tears.
The story is told in an old book of sermon illustrations of a submarine that lay disabled on the ocean floor. Several days passed and the crew lost hope of being rescued. The prospect was especially dim because they had not been able to communicate their exact position to ships on the surface. The commanding officer explained to the men that they didn’t have much longer to live, and he suggested that they sing a hymn. So together, they sang these words: “The darkness deepens—Lord, with me abide.”
In the comic strip Peanuts, Lucy had just broken the news to Linus that children cannot live at home forever. Eventually they grow up and move away. Then she said that when he left she would get his room. But Linus quickly reminded her that at some time she too would have to leave home. When this realization hit Lucy, she was shocked, but she quickly came up with a solution. She turned the TV up loud, crawled into her beanbag chair with a bowl of ice cream, and refused to think about it.
Walking past my barn one day, I heard a frantic chirping inside, and upon investigation I found a bluejay beating its wings against the glass pane of the window. Had it not cried and squawked, I would not have heard it. But its plaintive note prompted me to open the door wide and the jay flew out to liberty.
A farmer had a weather vane on his barn, on which was written "God is love." When friends asked why, the farmer said, "This is to remind me that no matter which way the wind blows, God is love."
Two gardens are mentioned prominently in the Bible: the garden of Eden and the garden of Gethsemane. God placed the first man, Adam, in the garden of Eden; Jesus went into Gethsemane to restore what the first man had lost.
Who is not inspired by the competitor who makes a comeback after being down and seemingly out of the running! The runner who stumbles while coming off the starting blocks but moves gradually into the lead stirs the imagination of us all. The team that can come from behind in the last moments to win excites us even more than the team that constantly wins by scoring big in the first part of the game.