discipleship illustrations

  • fireA member of a certain church, who previously had been attending services regularly, suddenly stopped coming to church. After a few weeks, the Pastor went to visit. The Pastor found the man at home alone, sitting before a blazing fire.

    Guessing the reason for his Pastor's visit, the man welcomed him, led him to a comfortable chair near the fireplace and waited. The pastor made himself at home but said nothing. In the grave silence, he contemplated the dance of the flames around the burning logs.


    Be on the alert for symptoms of inner HOPE, PEACE, JOY, AND LOVE. The hearts of a great many have already been exposed to this virus and it is possible that people everywhere could come down with it in epidemic proportions. This could pose a serious threat to what has, up to now, been a fairly stable condition of conflict in the world.

    Some signs and symptoms of THE ADVENT VIRUS:

    ~ A tendency to think and act spontaneously rather than on fears based on past experiences.

    ~ An unmistakable ability to enjoy the moment.

  • golf stanceThe newest member of the country club was taking his initiatory round of golf with the club's officers. He was nervous about making a good impression. He teed up the ball, spread his feet apart, fixed his stance, and took a healthy swing. The golf club removed about a pound of turf, but left the ball intact. Terribly embarrassed, the man again planted his feet, took another healthy swing, and again, totally missed the ball. Although thoroughly exasperated, once again he spread his feet apart, fixed his stance, and took a vibrant swing----and for the third time missed. Whereupon he looked up and said, "Wow, this sure is a tough course."

    Many of us are more like that golfer than we care to admit. We spend our time and energy blaming our problems on circumstances and conditions and cultural contexts, when we should be changing our stance.

    - Leonard Sweet

  • manA preacher and the president of a soap manufacturing company went for a walk together.

    The president said, "What good is Christianity? Look at all the trouble and misery of the world! Still there, even after years, thousands of years, of teaching about goodness and truth and love and peace. Still there, after all the sermons and teachings. If Christianity is good and true, why should this be?"

  • *Directions to Our Father's House*

    map coupleMake a Right onto "Believing Blvd."

    Keep straight and go through the Green Light, which is Jesus Christ.

    From there, you must turn onto the "Bridge of Faith," which is over troubled water.

  • military bootsAs a new Ensign, I was assigned duty at the Naval Observatory in Washington, DC, and carpooled to work with a veteran Marine sergeant. One afternoon, I showed him a pair of brown shoes I had purchased to go with my khaki uniform. He examined the leather carefully. "Let me take these home," he said, "and I'll show you a real Marine Corps shine."

    The next day I wore my old shoes, expecting to switch them with the ones the sergeant was polishing. From a grocery bag, Sarge pulled out the right shoe, shining like glass. "This is the way a Marine shines a shoe," he said. "Now all you have to do is polish the left one to look like it."

  • crossWhat does it mean to look to Christ? William Fenner (1600–1640) explains:

    "When a man looks to Christ in such a way that he follows him; when a man sees him as his only means of being happy, godly, and in the favor of God, the only means to do and be well, and genuinely desires to follow after him - this is to look up to Christ.

    When a man sincerely labors to follow the counsel and direction of Christ in all his ways, he bids him deny himself - and that is the thing that he labors for. He bids him repent of all his sins, ply himself to all God’s holy paths, and rely upon him for strength and acceptance, mercy and pardon, and every blessing.

    Whatever he looks for at the hands of God, he sets himself to follow Christ’s counsel, and to expect it in him. If he sees

  • tree with vineWalking through a park, I passed a massive oak tree. A vine had grown up along its trunk. The vine started small - nothing to bother about. But over the years the vine had gotten taller and taller. By the time I passed, the entire lower half of the tree was covered by the vine's creepers. The mass of tiny feelers was so thick that the tree looked as though it had innumerable birds' nests in it.

    Now the tree was in danger. This huge, solid oak was quite literally being taken over; the life was being squeezed from it. But the gardeners in that park had seen the danger.

  • bicycleAt first, I saw God as my observer, my judge, keeping track of the things I did wrong, so as to know whether I merited heaven or hell when I die. He was out there, sort of like a president. I recognized His picture but I didn't really know him.

    But later on, when I met Christ it seemed as though life were rather like a bike ride; but it was a tandem bike, and I noticed that Christ was in the back helping me pedal.

  • church peopleAs Christians, it is our responsibility to be a witness to our neighbors but, also, to let our witness show by our faithfulness in the family of God and the house of God every opportunity we can. As our neighbors watch us leave on Sunday morning, they will say "There they go again."

    As our neighbors watch us leave on Wednesday evening, they will say, "There they go again."

    As our neighbors watch us leave on a Friday morning, they will say, "There they go again."

    One day, when the trumpet of God sounds and God steps out onto the portals of Heaven to say, "Come here," our neighbors can look out their window saying, "There they go again."

  • personA funny story is told about General George Patton from his World War II days. He once accepted an invitation to dine at a press camp in Africa. Wine was served in canteen cups but, obviously thinking he was served coffee, Patton poured cream into his cup. As he stirred in sugar, Patton was warned that his cup contained red wine and not coffee.

    Now, General Patton could never, never be wrong. Without hesitating he replied, "I know. I like my wine this way." And he drank it!