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Tony Campolo says that his wife is a brilliant woman. She has a PHD & is capable of pursuing a very profitable career. But she elected to stay home with her children when they were young. Her decision didn’t bother her at all except when other women would ask, “What do you do?” She would answer, “I’m a homemaker. I stay home & take care of my children & my husband.” They would usually respond with “Oh” & then ignore her from then on.
So Mrs. Campolo came up with this response when she was asked what she did: “I’m socializing two Homo-sapiens in Judeo-Christian values so they’ll appropriate the eschatological values of utopia. What do you do?” They would often blurt out “I’m a doctor” or “I’m a lawyer” & then wander off with a dazed look in their eyes.
Even when we come across test questions that seem simple on the surface, we find that they’re often not as simple as we first thought. For instance, the answer to the question, "How long did the Hundred Years War last?’ seems obvious, but the answer is 116 years. When a test asks, "Which country manufactures Panama hats?" the correct answer is Equador. Here’s another: From what animal do we get cat gut? From sheep and horses of course. In which month do Russians celebrate the October Revolution? November. What was King George IV’s first name? Well, everyone knows it was Albert. Ah yes...many test takers are glad to be out of school...far away from trick questions like that thought up in some teacher’s lounge.
But as far as we try to get from the rigors of the academic life, we find our lives are filled with other kinds of tests. We take driver’s tests, drug tests, polygraph tests, sobriety tests, eye tests, entrance exams. People in law enforcement have to qualify on the shooting range at least four times a year, many of you have to take a test for your chosen profession. Like it or not, tests are a part of life.
But is there a test to determine whether a person is on the right track spiritually?
A preacher recently quit the ministry after more than 20 years of faithful, dedicated service and became a funeral director. When asked why he changed vocations, he said:
"I spent 10 years trying to straighten out John and he’s still an alcoholic. Then I spent three and one-half years trying to straighten out Harold and Susan’s marriage problems and they ended up getting a divorce. Later I tried for two years to help Bob kick his drug habit and he is still an addict. Now, at the funeral home, when I straighten them out, they stay straight!"
Regardless of his state in the present, the negative thinker finds disappointment in the future. The epitaph on a negative person’s headstone ought to read, “I expected this.” A sign that was read several years ago in an office building can best describe this type of thinking:
Don’t look – you might see.
Don’t listen – you might hear.
Don’t think – you might learn.
Don’t make a decision – you might be wrong.
Don’t’ walk – you might stumble.
Don’t’ run – yo...
A wife remarked to her husband after the church service: "Did you see the hat Mrs.Jones was wearing?" "No," said her husband, "I didn’t." "Did you see the new dress Mrs. Smith had on?" she asked. "I’m afraid I didn’t," said her husband. To this his wife replied: "Well a lot of good it does YOU to go
The Bigger the Better
It was absolutely amazing. I was in West Africa—Timbuktu to be exact—and the missionaries were telling me that in that culture the larger the women were the more beautiful they were thought to be. In fact, a young missionary who had a small, trim wife said that the nationals had told him she was a bad reflection on him—he obviously was not providing well enough for her. A proverb in that part of Africa says that if your wife is on a camel and the camel cannot stand up, your wife is truly beautiful.
Fan The Flame, J. Stowell, Moody, 1986, p. 119
There was this parrot who lived in a bar. Well the barkeeper decided to sell the bar and a group of church people who needed a new church bought it to convert it to a place to meet for worship. So the bar was open it’s last night for business. After midnight when the bar closed down and the parrot was sleeping, people came in and redecorated the bar to look like a church. On Sunday morning the parrot woke up and saw the people coming in for church. The parrot squawked, “Same old crowd, just a different décor.”
I had some friends with a three-year-old son. For family fun, they liked to play the game Memory. It consisted of a bunch of cards arranged on the floor face down. Those playing took turns, trying to turn over matching pairs of cards. If you got a match, you kept them and went again. The person with the most matches was the winner. As the family played, the dad remarked, "My strategy is that I focus on two or three specific pairs that I’m trying to get, and after I get them, I pick out two or three more." The mother said, "My strategy is that I start on the cards in the co...
WHEN NO ONE IS WATCHING
In 1945, Arsenal were playing Russian giants Dynamo Moscow in London when a thick fog descended over the ground. The referee refused to abandon the game as the visitors had come such a long way, but it was impossible to see what was going on. It is said that an Arsenal player who was sent off sneaked back on, while the Soviet side may have brought substitutes to boost their numbers to 12-13. Dynamo Moscow won 3-2.
Sermon Central Staff
WHAT I DON'T WANT TO BE
I recall a conversation I once had with a precocious little boy we once had in the church I pastored for 10 years in Wiesbaden. I asked him what he wanted to be when he grew up.
"Well," he replied, "I don't want to be a fireman."
I'd never had a kid tell me what he was NOT going to do when he grew up so I asked him, "Why don't you want to be a fireman?"
"Because," he said, "they make too much noise."
I chuckled as he continued, "And I don't want to be a preacher either."
"Oh, and why's that?"
"Because they make too much noise too!"
All his friends chuckled when he said that. Finally, he got around to what he wanted to do. He said he wanted to be a trash collector! I thought that was a curious goal in life, but my second oldest son also used to want to be a trash collector, so I wandered if it was for the same reason. Sure enough, it was.
I asked him, "Johnny, why in the world do you want to be a trash collector?"
He said, "Because I want to ride on the back of the truck like the trashmen!"
Children often speculate what they are going to be when they grow up. As children of God, there are also some things that we ought to NOT want to be and some things we SHOULD want to be.
(From a sermon by Charles Sligh, 3 Things I Don't Want to Be; 1 Thing I Do Want to Be, 4/20/2011)