Summary: Life is sometimes a matter of survival more than victory. We all need help.
VICTORY OR SURVIVAL?
INTRO.- SURVIVOR. The Australian Outback. The TV show. Did you watch it? How many of you watched at least one of the “survivors” shows? How about the whole series?
Beginning January 28, 2001 the world watched as 16 people were stranded in the Australian Outback. There, they had to work together to survive, while eliminating each other one by one every three days. The lone survivor walked away with $1,000,000.
Regardless of what you thought of this television series it was something of a phenomenon. It was reported that between 26 and 50 million Americans watched the broadcasts.
Fifty-three year old Rodger Bingham from Crittenden, Kentucky, was one of the survivor contestants. What made him interesting was the fact that not only was he a Christian, but he was also an elder in the Crittenden Christian Church.
COULDN’T YOU ENVISION SOME OF OUR ELDERS IN AUSTRALIA, competing for that million dollars, climbing trees and eating worms, etc.? Yeah, I could envision Gary Saveley eating worms and climbing trees, because he lives in trees most of the year anyway!
Rodger Bingham didn’t experience victory and win the million dollars, but he was a winner to many Christians who watched the show. He was definitely a survivor.
The winner of the Australian survivors was 40-year-old, Tina Wesson, a nurse from Knoxville, TN. Born and raised in Knoxville, Tennessee, Wesson currently resides there with her husband, Dale, and her two children, Katie and Taylor. She is a member of the Outstanding Young Women of America and the Fellowship of Christian Athletes. Apparently, Tina Wesson also believes in Christ and is a Christian. And she was the million dollar winner!
But I bet she is also a survivor when it comes to the matter of living this life! I don’t know anything about her personal life, but I know that life itself is a matter of survival!
ILL.- An airline company was disturbed over a high percentage of accidents so they decided to eliminate human errors by building a completely computerized plane. "Ladies and gentlemen," came a voice over the PA during the initial flight, "It may interest you to know that you are traveling in the world’s first completely automated and computerized plane. Now just back and relax because nothing can go wrong....go wrong....go wrong....go wrong....."
Brethren, things do go wrong for us in life! No matter who we are, some things do go wrong. Consequently, life sometimes becomes more of a battle for survival rather than winning.
ILL.- Just two weeks ago a married couple by the name of Johnny and Dorothy Lynn went to church at First Christian in Anna, IL. They went to Sunday School and suddenly he started to feel really bad so his wife took him to the local hospital. While there, she suffered a heart attack. They called for a helicopter to take her to a hospital in Cape Girardeau, MO. SHE DIED ON THE WAY. She was 75 years old. That was on Sunday.
Soon after that, her husband Johnny suffered a mild heart attack and they took him to Cape Girardeau. And he died on Wednesday.
Johnny was 79 years old and Dorothy was 75. They had been married 57 years. They had only one child. Her name is Jean Alice Craig. Now you can’t tell me that she isn’t suffering right now! She had both her parents one minute and they were gone the next minute! That has to hurt. She has to be greatly burdened. The only consolation she has is the fact that both her parents were Christians and are now at home with the Lord!
Things do go wrong in life and for one reason or another. Marriages fall apart, babies are born with defects, children go wild, we lose jobs, cars break down and so do our bodies, people die, and so on.
Believe me, I’m not happy about it! I wish things were hunky dory all the time, but they’re not! What we can do about our suffering? How can we survive the problems and pitfalls of this life?
PROP.- There are three different areas of help for the problems we face in this life in order to survive.
1- Help from within
2- Help from without
3- Help from above
I. HELP FROM WITHIN
Gal. 6:5 "For each one should carry his own load." KJV "For every man shall bear his own burden." The idea of Gal. 6:1-5 is that of bearing one another’s burdens, but Paul is also saying there are some burdens that we have to bear ourselves.
ILL.- A man in a supermarket was pushing a shopping cart which contained, besides groceries, a screaming baby boy. As the man proceeded down the aisles, he kept saying, "Keep calm, George. Don’t get excited, George. Don’t yell, George."