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Sermon Illustrations on Direction

Stories

Alice and the Chesire Cat

In the Disney animated classic Alice in Wonderland, Alice wanders through a frustrating world of tardy rabbits, singing flowers, and one curious-talking cat. Her visit with the cat begins as she continues down a mysterious darkened trail and stops at a large tree.

The tree is covered with signs that point in every possible direction: “Up,” “Down,” “Yonder,” “Back,” “This Way,” and “That Way.” Poor Alice looks more confused than ever and asks herself, “Now let’s see. Where was I? I wonder which way I ought to go?”

Just then, Alice hears a melodic voice that seems to be drifting down from the trees. She looks all around and finally observes two ghostly eyes and a wide toothy grin floating amongst the boughs of the great tree.

The grinning teeth inquire of Alice, “Lose something?”

“N-n-no, I was just…” stammers Alice in reply.

Suddenly, a pink striped feline body emerges from the branches.

“Oh, you’re a cat!”

“A cheshire cat,” he responds.

“I just want to ask which way I ought to go,” asks Alice.

“Well that depends on where you want to get to,” says the cat.

“Well, it really doesn’t matter,” answers Alice.

“Then it really doesn’t matter which way you go,” says the enigmatic cat just before vanishing into the woods again.

Submitted by Chris Stroup, Alice in Wonderland (Walt Disney, 1951)

Changing Direction

There was a story going around about the Special Olympics. For the hundred-yard dash, there were nine contestants, all of them so-called physically or mentally disabled. All nine of them assembled at the starting line and, at the sound of the gun, they took off. But one little boy didn’t get very far. He stumbled and fell and hurt his knee and began to cry. The other eight children heard the boy crying. They slowed down, turned around, and ran back to him–every one of them ran back to him. The little boy got up, and he and the rest of the runners linked their arms together and joyfully walked to the finish line.

They all finished the race at the same time. And when they did, everyone in the stadium stood up and clapped and whistled and cheered for a long, long time. And you know why? Because deep down we know that what matters in this life is more than winning for ourselves. What really matters is helping others win, too, even if it means slowing down and changing our course now and then.

Fred (Mr.) Rogers

The Lost Ticket

Albert Einstein, the great physicist,  was once traveling from Princeton on a train when the conductor came down the aisle, punching the tickets of every passenger. When he came to the famous professor, Einstein reached into his vest pocket. He couldn’t find his ticket, so he reached in his trouser pockets. It wasn’t there, so he looked in his briefcase but couldn’t find it. Then he looked in the seat beside him. He still couldn’t find it.

The conductor said, ‘Dr. Einstein, I know who you are. We all know who you are. I’m sure you bought a ticket. Don’t worry about it.’

Einstein nodded appreciatively. The conductor continued down the aisle punching tickets. As he was ready to move to the next car, he turned around and saw the great physicist down on his hands and knees looking under his seat for his ticket.

The conductor rushed back and said, ‘Dr. Einstein, Dr. Einstein, don’t worry, I know who you are. No problem. You don’t need a ticket. I’m sure you bought one.’

Einstein looked at him and said, ‘Young man, I too, know who I am. What I don’t know is where I’m going.’

Source Unknown, *this story may or may not be true.

Humor

The Lost Ticket

Albert Einstein, the great physicist,  was once traveling from Princeton on a train when the conductor came down the aisle, punching the tickets of every passenger. When he came to the famous professor, Einstein reached into his vest pocket. He couldn’t find his ticket, so he reached in his trouser pockets. It wasn’t there, so he looked in his briefcase but couldn’t find it. Then he looked in the seat beside him. He still couldn’t find it.

The conductor said, ‘Dr. Einstein, I know who you are. We all know who you are. I’m sure you bought a ticket. Don’t worry about it.’

Einstein nodded appreciatively. The conductor continued down the aisle punching tickets. As he was ready to move to the next car, he turned around and saw the great physicist down on his hands and knees looking under his seat for his ticket.

The conductor rushed back and said, ‘Dr. Einstein, Dr. Einstein, don’t worry, I know who you are. No problem. You don’t need a ticket. I’m sure you bought one.’

Einstein looked at him and said, ‘Young man, I too, know who I am. What I don’t know is where I’m going.’

Source Unknown, *this story may or may not be true.

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Related Themes

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Aim

Disorientation

Guidance

Navigation

Progress

Targets

Wisdom

& Many More