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Illustration results for discouragement

Contributed By:
Marcus Naugler
 
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Once upon a time, the animals decided they should do something meaningful to meet the problems of the new world. So they organized a school. They adopted an activity curriculum of running, climbing, swimming and flying. To make it easier to administer the curriculum, all the animals took all the subjects. The duck was excellent in swimming; in fact, better than his instructor. But he made only passing grades in flying, and was very poor in running. Since he was slow in running, he had to drop swimming and stay after school to practice running. This caused his webbed feet to be badly worn, so that he was only average in swimming. But average was quite acceptable, so nobody worried about that - except the duck. The rabbit started at the top of his class in running, but developed a nervous twitch in his leg muscles because of so much make-up work in swimming. The squirrel was excellent in climbing, but he encountered constant frustration in flying class because his teacher made him start from the ground up instead of from the treetop down. He developed "charlie horses" from overexertion, and so only got a C in climbing and a D in running. The eagle was a problem child and was severely disciplined for being a non-conformist. In climbing classes he beat all the others to the top of the tree, but insisted on using his own way to get there..."

The obvious moral of that story is a simple one - each creature has its own set of capabilities in which it will naturally excel -unless it is expected or forced to fill a mold that doesn’t fit. When that happens, frustration, discouragement, and even guilt bring overall mediocrity or complete defeat. A duck is a duck -and only a duck. It is built to swim, not to run or fly and certainly not t...

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Contributed By:
Lynn Malone
 
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I heard the story of the minister who was leading a building campaign in his church and need to raise some additional funds. Sound familiar? One day, the minister was checking the store room (we know this isn’t a story about Benton United Methodist Church because there ain’t no store room!), and he discovered several cases of bibles that had never been opened or distributed. In his Sunday sermon, the pastor asked for three volunteers from the congregation who would be willing to go door-to-door selling these bibles for $10 each to raise money for the building fund.
Peter, Paul, and Louie all raised their hands to volunteer. The pastor knew that Peter and Paul both earned their living as salesmen and were quite capable of selling some bibles, but he had serious doubts about Louie. Louie was just a small local farmer who always tended to keep to himself because he was embarrassed by his speech impediment. Louie just stuttered very badly. Not wanting to be a discouragement to Louie, the pastor decided to let him give it a try.
The pastor stacked each man’s car with bibles after the service, and sent them on their way with instructions to report back in a week’s time. Next Sunday came, and the pastor was eager to find out how each man did. He asked Peter how many bibles he had sold. Peter proudly handed the pastor an envelope and said, “Pastor, I am proud to report I sold 20 bibles, and here is $200 for the building fund.”
“You’re a fine salesman, Peter, and the church is indebted to you,” replied the Pastor.
Then the pastor turned to Paul. “How many bibles did you sell, Paul?” asked the pastor.
Paul stuck out his chest proudly and responded, “Pastor, I’m a professional salesman, and I am pleased to offer my gifts to the church. I sold 28 bibles and here is $280 cash to go toward our new building.”
“Wonderful,” the pastor said. “It is great to have such willing people serve the congregation.”
Finally, the pastor came to Louie. A bit apprehensively the pastor asked Louie how many bibles he had sold. Louie just handed him an envelope. The pastor opened the envelope and to his amazement there was $3,200.00 inside. “Louie,” the pastor exclaimed, “are you saying you sold 320 bibles?”
Louie just nodded.
Of course, Peter and Paul could not believe it. “We’re professional salesmen. Do you mean to sta...

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Contributed By:
Peter Loughman
 
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Sleepless
There once was a man named Randy Lo – his friends just called him Lo. Lo lived a hard life ignoring the many attempts of friends to introduce him to Jesus Christ. Eventually, though, Lo did become a Christian, giving his life over to our Lord Jesus. After some time, his walk with the Lord became stale, and Lo became quite discouraged, and his discouragement led to him lose a lot of sleep. One day while having lunch with a friend he expressed his discouragement saying that he didn’t feel that God was around him anymore, and this disturbed him so much he could hardly get a wink of sleep. His friend being a wise and mature Christian encouraged Lo not to give up but to again pick up his bible and search the Scriptures – he suggested starting with the Gospel o...

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