Sermon Illustrations

THE PRAYER AND THE CHAIR

A woman called a pastor to come to the house to see her father. He goes to the house not knowing whether the man is Christian or not but he notices as he talks to him and the man answers back that he must be a Christian and there is a chair sitting close by. An empty chair. He asks "What's the chair for and the man said, "Well, I'll tell you, but I won't tell my daughter, she'll think I'm crazy. I've always had trouble praying. I knew a man in my early years who said to me, 'All you need to do is put an empty chair in front of you and prayer is nothing more than talking to God. And why don't you imagine God sitting in that chair and you just talk to him.'" And so he said, "I put an empty chair there and started talking to the chair as if God was there and it got so good that I just do it now hours sometime at a time and just talk to God and God talks to me and my soul is blessed by His divine grace." And he said, "If I tell my daughter, she'll think I'm losing my mind."

Some months later, the man died. When the Pastor came to visit the family, he said to the daughter, "How did he die? What happened to him?" She said, "Well, the sickness just finally got him. But the strangest way we found him. When I came in, he was dead, but there's a chair sitting beside the bed and I noticed that he had pushed himself out of the bed and put his head in the chair and died there with his head in the chair."

(From a sermon by Ricky Nelms, Hallowed Be Thy Name, 7/14/2010)

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