DON’T JUST COUNT THEM, LOOK THEM IN THE EYE
An item in Leadership magazine illustrates the importance of giving attention to needs, not just to numbers. "During World War II, economist E.F. Schumacher, then a young statistician, worked on a farm. Each day he would count the 32 head of cattle, then turn his attention elsewhere. One day an old farmer told him that if all he did was count the cattle, they wouldn’t flourish. Sure enough, one day he counted 31; one was dead in the bushes. Now Schumacher understood the farmer: you must watch the quality of each animal. "Look him in the eye; study the sheen of his coat. You may not know how many cattle you have, but you might save the life of one that is sick."
Great advice, whether it’s for the Sunday school teacher or the pastor. A full class or a crowded church isn’t necessarily a healthy class or a spiritual church. To find out people’s spiritual condition, you must "look them in the eye." Then you can minister to their needs.
(From a sermon by Scott Chambers, "What’s the Significance of a Shepherd?")
Related Sermon Illustrations
Contributed by John Hamby on Aug 11, 2003
How Do I Know He Lives? How do I know that Christ has risen? What proof have I to give? He touched my life one blessed day, And I began to live. How do I know he left the tomb That morning long ago? I met Him just this morning, And my heart is still aglow. How do I know the endless ...read more
Contributed by Chris Hodges on Jul 28, 2003
Consider this short poem entitled “Power of Words:” A careless word may kindle strife A cruel word may wreak a life A bitter word may hate instill A brutal word may smite and kill A gracious word may smooth the way A joyous word ...read more
Contributed by Bo Dunford on Apr 15, 2005
A wife went with her friend to the police station to report that her husband was missing! * When the policeman asked for a description, she said, “He’s 6 foot 2, has deep blue eyes, dark wavy hair, athletic build, well-groomed and sharply dressed, weighs 185 pounds .......” * “He’s ...read more
Contributed by Donnie Martin on Aug 10, 2003
True biblical worship so satisfies our total personality that we don’t have to shop around for man-made substitutes. William Temple made this clear in his masterful definition of worship: For worship is the submission of all our nature to God. It is the quickening of conscience by His holiness; ...read more