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Illustration results for ephesians 4:29

Contributed By:
Bruce Emmert
 
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One of the most touching moment in the Sydney Olympics was when Eric "The Swimmer" Moussambani of Equatorial Guinea swam in the 100-meter free style qualifying heat. The 22-year-old African had only learned to swim last January, had only practiced in a 20-meter pool without lane markers, and had never raced more than 50 meters. By special invitation of the International Olympic Committee, under a special program that permits poorer countries to participate even though their athletes don’t meet customary standards, he had been entered in the 100-meter men’s freestyle.

When the other two swimmers in his heat were disqualified because of false starts, Moussambani was forced to swim alone. Eric Moussambani was, to use the words of an Associated Press story about his race, "charmingly inept." He never put his head under the water’s surface and flailed wildly to stay afloat. With ten meters left to the wall, he virtually came to a stop. Some spectators thought he might drown! Even though his time was over a minute slower than what qualified for the next level of competition, the capacity crowd at the Olympic Aquatic Center stood to their feet and cheered the swimmer on. After what seemed like an eternity, the African reached the wall and hung on for dear life. When he had caught his breath and regained his composure, the French-speaking Moussambani said through an interpreter, "I want to send hugs and kisses to the crowd. It was their cheering that kept me going."

As Christians, we have a cheering section encouraging us on when we are tired and calling out to us to do better when we are feeling at our best. The author of Hebrews says, “We are surrounded by a great cloud of witnesses.” What in the world does he mean—great cloud of witnesses? The author of Hebrews is telling us that we are a part of something much richer and deeper than we know. As children of God and as brothers and sisters of Jesus Christ, we are a part of a family.

 
Contributed By:
Ian Biss
 
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In his book The Youth Builder, Jim Burns talks about the importance of building up young people with affirmation and trust. What he says about criticism applies to every age group: For every critical comment we receive, it takes nine affirming comments to even out the negative effect in our life. Most young people receive more critical comments a day than encouraging ones. You can have a very positive, life transforming effect when you develop a ministry of affirmation.

 
Contributed By:
Daniel DeVilder
 
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Revival Prayer Exalts God, because it puts things in perspective: God is high and lifted up—

It’s like flying up in a plane and everything is so small. It’s not that our problems disappear, but we realize from God’s perspective, it is nothing he can’t handle.

I remember how honored and humbled I felt when I stood in the presence of Bob Dole, running for president, and shook his hand. To some he may have been a crusty old politician with a withered hand, but to me he was a larger than life figure who represented the solution to my nations needs. He lost.

Brothers and Sisters, God is FAR GREATER than Bob Dole, George Bush, Bill Clinton—and he NEVER loses.

Few prayers should ever pass our lips that fail to Exalt God’s great name for His glory and our edification.

 
Contributed By:
David DeWitt
 
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A man decided to join a monastery and one of the rules of the group was that you were only allowed to speak two words every ten years. At the end of ten years he said, "Bad food!"
Ten more years went by and he said, "Hard bed!"
Finally, on his 30th anniversary with the brothers, he thunder...

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Contributed By:
Davon Huss
 
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Tags: Judgment (add tag)
 
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MY OPINION OF HIM

Robert E. Lee was asked what he thought of General Joe Johnston, a fellow officer in the Confederate Army. Lee rated him as being very satisfactory and made glowing comments about him. The person who asked the question seemed perplexed. "General," he said, "I guess you don’t know what he’s been saying about you."

"I know," answered Lee. "But I was asked my opinion of him, not his opinion of me!"

 
Contributed By:
Sermon Central Staff
 
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THE IMPACT OF PUT-DOWNS ON A MARRIAGE

In order to uncover the processes that destroy unions, marital researchers study couples over the course of years, and even decades, and retrace the star-crossed steps of those who have split up back to their wedding day. What they are discovering is unsettling. None of the factors one would guess might predict a couple’s durability actually does: not how in love a newlywed couple say they are; how much affection they exchange; how much they fight or what they fight about. In fact, couples who will endure and those who won’t look remarkably similar in the early days. Yet when psychologists Cliff Notarius of Catholic University and Howard Markman of the University of Denver studied newlyweds over the first decade of marriage, they found a very subtle but telling difference at the beginning of the relationships.

Among couples who would ultimately stay together, 5 out of every 100 comments made about each other were putdowns. Among couples who would later split, 10 of every 100 comments were insults. That gap magnified over the following decade, until couples heading downhill were flinging five times as many cruel and invalidating comments at each other as happy couples. "Hostile putdowns act as cancerous cells that, if unchecked, erode the relationship over time," says Notarius, who with Markman co-authored the new book We Can Work It Out. "In the end, relentless unremitting negativity takes control and the couple can’t get through a week without major blowups."

(U.S. News & World Report, February 21, 1994, Page 67. From a sermon by Gerald Flury, Harmless, 8/12/2010)

 
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Sermon Central Staff
 
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Spurgeon Shown Grace by Fellow Minister

Charles Spurgeon and Joseph Parker both had churches in London in the 19th century. On one occasion, Parker commented on the poor condition of children admitted to Spurgeon's orphanage. It was reported to Spurgeon however, that Parker had criticized the orphanage itself.
Spurgeon blasted Parker the next week from the pulpit.

The attack was printed in the newspapers and became the talk of the town. People flocked to Parker's church the next Sunday to hear his rebuttal.

"I understand Dr. Spurgeon is not in his pulpit today, and this is the Sunday they use to take an offering for the orphanage. I suggest we take a love offering here instead." The crowd was delighted. The ushers had to empty the collection plates three times.

Later that week there was a knock at Parker's study. It was Spurgeon. "You know Parker, you have practiced grace on me. You have given me not what I deserved; you have given me what I needed.

(Source: Moody Monthly, Dec., 1983, p. 81. From a sermon by Nathan Johnson, The Desire of the Humble, 10/30/2009)

 
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GIVING UP CUSSING

A little boy was sitting sadly on the curb beside his lawn mower, when along came a minister riding a bicycle. The minister noticed that the boy appeared discouraged, so he thought he would try to help.

"Hello there!" said the minister. "How would you like to trade your lawn mower for this bicycle?"

"Sure, mister," the little boy responded, and went on his
merry way.

A few days later, the boy and the minister crossed paths again. The minister said, "I think you took me on our trade. I keep crankin’ that old lawn mower, but it won’t start."

"You gotta cuss it," said the little boy.

"Well I can’t do that," said the m...

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Everyone is a prisoner of his own experiences. No one can eliminate prejudices just recognize them.

 
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