Sermon Illustrations

Sometime immediate responses are the best way to deal with a situation. I remember being a young Marine at Infantry training school in the coastal mountains of San Diego – I know it sounds like such tough duty just a few miles from the beaches of San Diego, California! Trust me, it was more difficult than it probably sounds to you so far!

There was one particular part of the training that has really stuck with me over the years since. It was ambush training. In Marine Corps Infantry doctrine, at least at that time, it was the standard practice that the best way to deal with being ambushed was to turn and run into the attacking enemy.

I know it sounds crazy. In fact, your natural impulse is probably to turn and get as far away from the enemy as possible or at least to run and find some sort of cover. The trouble with running away from the enemy though is that he has already got the upper hand since he chose the terrain to ambush you in the chances are highly in his favor that there is no where to get good cover to return fire.

So, you turn and immediately charge the enemy who ambushed you. In doing this you are very likely to confuse him, throw off his concentration, and quite possibly even instill a bit of fear into him. He is likely to think that you are either not in your right mind or that you know something he doesn’t know!

That teaching has always stuck with me because there are times when to act immediately and directly are very appropriate. It has been my experience that the best way to deal with conflict in our personal lives and relationships, conflict at work, conflict with our family, or with people within the church is to immediately turn and face it.