Sermon Illustrations

Let me tell you about C.S.Lewis, the author of the Chronicles of Narnia. In 1952 he had been writing to one of his fans an American woman named Joy Gresham, a recent convert to Christianity, and who had been a Communist Jew. She was also going through a hard divorce. He autographed her copy of his book, The Great Divorce. He wrote, "There are three images in my mind which I must continually forsake and replace by better ones: the false image of God, the false image of my neighbours, and the false image of myself.”

What he meant by that quote was that we form an image of God, or of another person, or ourselves after reading a book, hearing a lecture or sermon, or having a conversation with a friend, and we may temporarily get clearer thoughts. We may understand God better. But if we hold onto this new picture too tightly, it becomes an idol that must be broken in order to allow a better image to take its place.

Well, It turns out, he eventually married Joy Gresham. Even though she once brought such joy to his life, that joy ended too soon, because she died of cancer in 1960, after only 4 years of marriage. Lewis fell into grief, even asking whether God was a good God or a "Cosmic Sadist."

In time Lewis wrestled with all the previous ideas he had had of God. They came face to face with the reality of God. Who Lewis thought God was vs. who God really is. He said, “My idea of God is not a divine idea. It has to be shattered time after time. He shatters it himself.”

And he wrote words that sounded vaguely familiar to those he had written in Joy’s copy of The Great Divorce years before, he reaffirmed his desire to reach beyond his changing perceptions and feelings in order to find what was eternally real: "Not my idea of God, but God.”

Related Sermon Illustrations

  • I Heard Someone Give An Illustration Once About A ...

    Contributed by Clark Tanner on Sep 9, 2004
    based on 1 rating
     | 3,078 views

    I heard someone give an illustration once about a wooden well bucket he came upon. He thought it was useless at first, because it had been sitting next to a barn in the sun, unused for a long time. He could see daylight between the wooden slats of the bucket. Certainly, this thing would never ...read more

  • Max Lucado Tells A Story In A Book Called "It's ...  PRO

    Contributed by Jeff Simms on Aug 2, 2004
    based on 7 ratings
     | 1,537 views

    Max Lucado tells a story in a book called “It’s Not About Me” about a friend of his who had cancer. Some well intentioned Christians had told him ‘If you have faith, then you will be healed”. But, no healing came, only a crisis in faith in that man’s life. Max suggested another answer to him, ...read more

  • A Man Has A Dream, He Dies And Goes To Hell!  PRO

    Contributed by Wade M. Hughes, Sr on Mar 28, 2003
    based on 57 ratings
     | 1,173 views

    A MAN HAS A DREAM, HE DIES AND GOES TO HELL! While in hell the man notices there are many tables and starving people are sitting all around the great tables. There is hot food of all taste on the table. In Hell, they are starving with food tortuuring them right before their eyes. While all this ...read more

  • Titanic Story – The Titanic Was Slated To Be The ...

    Contributed by Chad Garrison on Dec 23, 2006
    based on 1 rating
     | 1,324 views

    Titanic Story – The Titanic was slated to be the best ship ever built. It as hailed as “indestructible”, but when it hit an iceberg on it’s maiden voyage, it sank. It has since been discovered that it was not the size of the iceberg that sank the ship, but rather that it was rushed to completion ...read more

  • The Dog Gone Story!  PRO

    Contributed by Wade M. Hughes, Sr on Mar 28, 2003
    based on 39 ratings
     | 1,029 views

    THE DOG GONE STORY! Many years ago before airplanes and the great jets of today, people had to travel by ships. These great ocean going vessels were very slow sailing across long distances. The King of Greece made the decision to travel to the USA. The King had heard of the vast land and how ...read more

Related Sermons

Browse All Media

Related Media