Improve your sermon prep with our brand new study tools! Learn all about them here.
Text Illustrations
Our train rolled into Kansas City at 1 a.m. Dim lights came on to help the new passengers find seats. Many of us who had been riding home through the night had spread out to occupy two seats apiece.

An attractive woman made her way down the aisle with her bags. She was looking from side to side, hoping for someone to move. I turned toward the window and watched her in the reflection.

"May I sit here?" she asked.

"Sure." I looked up and smiled as I moved over. She threw her things into the rack above and sat down. Near the back of the car, only one of my colleagues had managed to keep his extra space. Lucky guy.

"My name’s Kathy. What’s yours?"

I told her, and we talked quietly for a while. She was on her way to visit her mother after some rough spats with her husband. I was eager to get home and see my wife and family after an exhausting church leadership conference.

Soon we had both slipped off to sleep. At some later stop, I awoke to find Kathy cuddled next to me. "You don’t mind if I lean my head on your shoulder, do you?" she said sleepily.

"Uh, no. I guess not." She was just tired ... wasn’t she? And besides, I had a wonderful wife and a great marriage and would be home before noon. I looked around to see if anyone was noticing.

She cuddled closer. I wondered what she really wanted--or would allow. At first I couldn’t believe what I was thinking. But then it was her fault. She knew exactly what she was doing. I might as well enjoy it. After all, what could happen on a train full of people? Nothing, nothing really ... except what Jesus warned about happening in the heart.

Finally, I excused myself so I could go back and talk with my friend--the "lucky" one with the empty seat beside him. Or maybe I was the lucky one since that extra space was still available. I only knew I didn’t need to stay where I had been.

Perhaps it wasn’t luck at all. Maybe that was the "way of escape" that 1 Corinthians 10:13 talks about, which God had provided from the beginning.


-- Dave Jackson in Leadership,

Related Text Illustrations

Related Sermons