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A.W. Tozer said, "We are called to an everlasting preoccupation with God."
FRANKL AND THE MEANING OF LIFE
When Jewish psychiatrist Viktor Frankl was arrested by the Nazis in World War II and put in Auschwitz, the infamous death camp, he was stripped of everything: property, family, possessions, and a manuscript he had spent years researching and writing on finding meaning in life. The manuscript had been sewn into the lining of his coat.
"Now it seemed as if nothing and no one would survive me; neither a physical nor a spiritual child of my own," Frankl wrote. "I found myself confronted with the question of whether under such circumstances my life was ultimately void of any meaning."
A few days later, the Nazis forced the prisoners to give up what little clothing they still wore. "I had to surrender my clothes and in turn inherited the worn-out rags of an inmate who had been sent to the gas chamber," said Frankl. "Instead of the many pages of my manuscript, I found in the pocket of the newly acquired coat a single page torn out of a Hebrew prayer book, which contained the Jewish prayer 'Shema Yisrael' (Hear, O Israel! The Lord our God is one God. And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might.)
"How should I have interpreted such a 'coincidence' other than as a challenge to 'live' my thoughts instead of merely putting them on paper?"
Frankl later reflected on his ordeal in Man's Search for Meaning, saying, "There is nothing in the world that would so effectively help one to survive even the worst conditions, as the knowledge that there is meaning in one's life.... He who has a 'why' to live for can bear almost any 'how.' "
[Based on Viktor Frankl, Man's Search for Meaning (Pocket, 1997). Larson, C. B., & Ten Elshof, P. (2008). 1001 illustrations that connect (241). Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing House.]
ILL. An old legend has it that a wealthy merchant of the 1st Century who wanted to meet the Apostle Paul encountered Timothy, who arranged a visit for him with Paul who, at that time, was a prisoner in Rome.
Stepping inside the cell, the merchant was surprised to find a rather old man, physically frail, but whose serenity & magnetism challenged the visitor. They talked for hours. Finally the merchant left with Paul’s blessing.
Outside the prison, he asked Timothy, "What is the secret of his serenity & power? I have never seen anything like it before." "Did you not guess?" replied Timothy. "Paul is in love."
The merchant looked bewildered. "In love?" "Yes," Timothy answered, "Paul is in love with Jesus Christ." The merchant looked even more bewildered. "Is that all?" Smiling, Timothy replied, "Sir, that is everything."
1 John 4:16-4:16
1 Corinthians 16:14-16:14
1 Thessalonians 16:14-16:14
Love is the key. Joy is love singing. Peace is love resting. Long-suffering is love enduring. Kindness is love’s touch. Goodness is love’s character. Faithfulness is love’s habit. Gentleness is love’s self-forgetfulne...
There was a great theologian who came to the USA from England and was being interviewed by a group of seminary students. The question was asked, “What is the most profound thought that ever occupied your mind.” The answer was, “Jesus loves me this I know for the Bible tells me so.”
You may go very, very deep in theology; you may become a scholar; you may become a philosopher, but you’ll never ever understand anything more profound than to understand that God loves you so much He gave His Son the Lord Jesus Christ.
“LOVE IS THE KEY”
(copyrighted by John Gaughan)
LOVE IS THE KEY, LOVE IS THE KEY
THOUGH I SPEAK IN TONGUES
LOVE IS THE KEY
LOVE IS PATIENT LOVE IS KIND,
NOT SELF SEEKING LOVE IS BLIND,
LOVE IS TRUTHFUL LOVE IS TRUST,
TO LOVE YOUR BROTHER IS A MUST.
LOVE CAN BREAK, BUT LOVE WILL MEND,
LOVE IS STRAIGHT, BUT LOVE CAN BEND,
LOVELY IS THE HEART THAT GIVES,
I LOVE HIM SURELY AS HE LIVES.
"I will stick to Christ as a burr to a topcoat!"
Last words of Katherine von Bora, Wife of Martin Luther
John Piper summed up our problem well with his statement, ‘The weakness of our hunger for God is not because he is unsavoury, but because ...
GEORGE SWEETING ON FOLLOWSHIP
George Sweeting notes, "The word 'follow' is a strenuous word. It is the same word used to describe Paul's fierce pursuit and persecution of the early Christians prior to his conversion. This same word is used by Paul when he speaks of pressing, 'toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus' (Phillippians 3:14)."
Love must precede hatred, and nothing is hated save through being contrary to a suitable thing which is loved. And hence it is that every hatred is caused by love.
Thomas Aquinas (c. 1225–1274), Italian philosopher, theologian. Summa Theologica, pt. 2, 2nd pt., qu. 29, art. 2 (1273).