Sermon Illustrations

Several years ago a Washington, D.C. TV reporter who was working on an assignment called“The Spirit of Christmas,” telephoned the British Embassy and asked to speak to the British ambassador.

“Ambassador,” the reporter said, “you have been very kind to us through the year and we would like to include you in a special Christmas news segment we’re going to run. Tell me, what would you like for Christmas?”

The ambassador replied, “I am very touched by your offer, but I must decline to accept any gift.”

“Oh please,” said the reporter, “you really have been very helpful to us, so won’t you please tell me what you would especially like for Christmas?”

Again the ambassador refused, but the reporter persisted, and he finally gave in. “All right then, if you insist. This Christmas I would like the jar of mint jelly.”

Having forgotten about the conversation, the ambassador was surprised when several weeks later, on Christmas Eve, he turned on the evening news and heard the same reporter introducing a segment on “The Spirit of Christmas.”

We recently interviewed three visiting ambassadors and asked them what they would like for Christmas. These three diplomats each gave revealing answers when they pondered what they would most like during this Christmas season of goodwill.

The German ambassador said: “I would like to see a peaceful and prosperous...

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