Sermon Illustrations

Illustration: A Better Plan

When in college Robert J , Morgan came across a poem written by a teenage girl looking for a husband. It was written as a prayer, and this is what she said:

Dear God, I pray all unafraid / As girls are wont to be

I do not want a handsome man / But make him, Lord, like Thee.

I do not need one big and strong / nor yet so very tall,

Nor need he be some genius / or wealthy, Lord, at all;

But let his head be high, dear God, / and let his eye be clear,

His shoulders straight, whate’er his fate / whate’er his earthly sphere.

And let his face have character, / a ruggedness of soul,

And let his whole life show, dear God, / a singleness of goal.

And when he comes / as he will come

With quiet eyes aglow / I’ll know, dear Lord,

That he’s the man / I prayed for long ago.

That girl’s name was Ruth Bell, and she later met and married—Billy Graham.

She died recently. Her life had a profound effect on one who so faithfully supported Billy Graham.

Robert J , Morgan found her poem while a college student, shy and wondering if I would ever find anyone to marry. So following her example he wrote a prayer to the Lord as a request for a life partner. It said:

I stumble, Lord, when I should think / Of finding one for me.

But to Thy throne I come to claim / That prudent wife from Thee.

She need not be a beauty, Lord, / The queen crowned at the fair;

Nor need she have a made-up face / Beneath embellished hair.

But let her eyes contain Thy strength, / Her smile announce Thy grace;

Her body kept within Thy realm, / Thy sheen upon her face.

Lord, give her hands that make each day / An innovative art,

And grant her feet to always serve / The progress of Thy heart.

She need not be a scholar, Lord, / But warm like Thee, and wise;

And with Thy wit, Thy word prepared / To teach and empathize.

And when the throbs of life shall come, / The trials that we shall see,

May she both find in Thee her peace / And be a strength to me.

So as I wait on Thee, dear Lord, / And in Thy dictates lean

Make me to be your man, and hers / And her to be my queen

(Morgan, Robert J.: Nelson’s Complete Book of Stories, Illustrations, and Quotes. electronic ed. Nashville : Thomas Nelson Publishers, 2000, S. 540)