Sermon Illustrations

Are We There Yet? (06.28.05--Direction--John 21:11-14 )

WHen I’m There, will I know that I am there? When we finally reach that point in life where all things finally work together and we’ve arrived at our life’s goal, that place where the many years of education, accumulated wisdom and just plain learning from life’s hard knocks and finger-nail dirty, hard work has finally brought us, will we know that we are there when we get there?

When I was studying at the university many years ago, I remember hearing a story from one of my college professors that I have never forgotten. A young lady, fresh out of college, had the opportunity to attend a cocktail party also attended by the world’s most famous physicist, Albert Einstein. Having majored in physics herself, she felt bold enough to approach the famous physicist and theorist with this question: “Doctor, I know that you have mastered many sciences and written many famous treatises on the laws of physics. But, Doctor, may I ask you a question? As I am a physicist, what do you consider your profession to be?”

The white-haired old scientist smiled, looked the young lady in the eyes and slowly stated. “Why I devote myself to the study of physics.”

The girl looked at him in astonishment. “You mean to say you study physics at your age?” she exclaimed. “I finished mine a year ago.”

Did Einstein know he gotten there? Was the direction in his life purposed so that he was actually able to know that he had achieved success and could now rest on that success? Evidently he didn’t think so. Einstein had discovered to his credit that direction is all about sustaining, not finishing. When Pablo Casals reached 95, a young reporter threw him a question: “Mr. Casals, you are 95 and the greatest cellist that ever lived. Why do you still practice six hours a day?” And Mr. Casals answered, “Because I think I’m making progress.” (Dr. Maxwell Maltz, quoted in Bits & Pieces, June 24, 1993, p. 12.)

As Christians it’s our goal to make progress every day of our lives. But actually reaching our goals, knowing that we are there when we get there? It is neither...

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