Sermon Illustrations

On an ICY winter’s night two weeks before Christmas, 1987, a PREACHER was impatiently waiting at the O’Hare Airport in Chicago. All FLIGHTS has been CANCELED due to FOG and FREEZING RAIN. The TERMINAL was in BEDLAM. Thousands of people were CLUSTERED at the TICKET COUNTERS demanding projected DEPARTURE times. Others were sitting silently FUMING at the DELAY of their FLIGHTS. Children were CRYING, the PA SYSTEM was BLARING, and the DEFEATED were BELLYING UP to the BAR. The PREACHER was TENSE and APPREHENSIVE. He was on his way back HOME to Texas after holding a week-long REVIVAL.

Sitting directly across from him was a middle-aged Hispanic woman with a child CRADLED in her ARMS. She was LAUGHING! The preacher thought to himself, "The world is COLLAPSING, thousands are STRANDED, O’Hare is a shrieking SNAKE PIT, and this woman is LAUGHING." She started PLAYING with the CHILD making GOO-GOO sounds, and then LAUGH some more.

She looked up and caught the preacher staring,

"Ma’am," the preacher said, "every other person here TONIGHT is RATTLED and MISERABLE. Would you mind telling my why you’re so HAPPY?" "Why sure," she said in BROKEN ENGLISH. "Christmas is COMING and that BABY Jesus„oHe makes me LAUGH."

The PREACHER, who was with the non-instrumental Church of Christ, the same fellowship I grew up in, commented in a SERMON that he had been so DESENSITIZED by Christmas, teaching and preaching how WRONG it is to CELEBRATE Christmas as the BIRTH of Christ, that he had forgotten the JOY of KNOWING that Jesus came into this WORLD as a REAL PERSON with PHYSICAL and EMOTIONAL needs and not merely as a SACRIFICE on a TREE. He said that he had taken LIFE much too SERIOUS!