Sermon Illustrations

The Brothers Grimm tell a story about a father and mother, their young son and the father’s very aged father that lived with them. The old man was feeble and his hands shook. His mealtimes were often noisy and messy because he would clatter the silverware together and he would spill his food or have it run out of corners of his mouth. The mealtimes especially got on the mother’s nerves until one day she told the old man, “That’s it! I’ve had it. Mealtime is supposed to be relaxing and enjoyable, not a time to watch someone make a mess every night.” So the woman set up a small table in the corner and she told her aged father-in-law “From now on you eat over there.” And he did. He would during mealtimes often look over at the others having their meal at the other table. But he never said a word. A few weeks passed and things had seemed to calm down when it happened--- he spilled his food all over ---it covered the little corner table and dripped down onto the floor. His daughter-in-law yelled out “If you’re going to eat like a pig, you’re going to eat out of a pig’s trough!” So she got a pig’s trough for the old man and began to put his food in it. A few days later the little boy was in the backyard playing with some boards, nails and a hammer. His father asked him “What are you building?” The little boy looked up from his project and said, “I’m building a trough for you and mommy for when you get old.” That night the father went in and brought his own father back to the family table. Matthew 7:2 reads, “For in the same way you judge others you will be judged and with the measure you use, it will be measured back to you.”