Preparing Your Family for the Hard Times
Psalm 102:1-7, Romans 8:28
June 13, 1992 am
Introduction: When George Jaeger took his three sons and (their) elderly grandfather out on the Atlantic Ocean for a fishing trip, he had no premonition of the horror that he would face in a matter of hours...The boat's engine had stalled in the late afternoon. While increasing winds whipped the sea into great waves, the boat rolled helpless in the water and then began to list dangerously. When it became apparent that they were sinking, the five Jaeger men put on the life vests, tied themselves together with a rope, and slipped into the water. It was 6:30pm when the sinking craft disappeared and the swimmers set out to work their way toward shore.
Six-foot waves and a strong current made the swimming almost impossible. First one boy, and then another-and another ... swallowed too much water. Helpless, George Jaeger watched his sons and then his father die. Eight hours later, he staggered onto the shore, still pulling the rope that bound the bodies of the other four to him.
"I realized they were all dead- my three boys and my father-but I guess I didn't want to accept it, so I kept swimming all night long," he said to reporters. "My youngest boy, Clifford, was the first to go. I had always taught our children not to fear death because it was being with Jesus Christ. Before he died I heard him say, 'I'd rather be with Jesus than go on fighting.'" (Gordon McDonald, The Effective Father, p. 13-14)
Most of us like to view the family in the most sentimental way possible. The very word family conjures up warm emotions within most of us. The truth of the matter is that; "Cinderella's generally don't marry charming princes. Too few children can say with Dorothy, ' There's no place like home.' And in the real world, Father doesn't always know best. If we're going to see life as it really is, we must strip away our illusions. When you get down to the basics, we must ...
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