SERMONS, OUTLINES, ILLUSTRATIONS, AND PREACHING IDEAS

FAITH FOR THE VALLEY

by Robert Dawson


Faith for the Valley
Robert Dawson
Mark 9:14-29


Most of you know I love baseball, have since I was a little guy. You also know I love my Atlanta Braves. I don't get to play ball any more. I am too old and out of shape to play ball and I don't have the opportunity to watch my Braves much either but I do check the articles, scores, headlines and highlights every day. There has not been much to cheer about this year in terms of wins but there have been some bright spots and some moments to cheer.

One occurred this past week. My Braves were playing their division rival the NY Mets and I pretty much root against all things NY when it comes to sports. It was the last inning. The Braves were ahead by one run. The Mets had two men on base with two outs with their slugger, Yoenis Cespedes, up to bat. The Braves close leaves one up in the zone over the plate and the batter drills it to deep right-center field. This ball is going over the fence, the game is about to be over, when the Braves CF, Ender Inciarte, makes a tremendous catch, robbing Cespedes of a homerun and persevering the win for the Braves. Kiss the ball baby!!

That is a moment as a ballplayer and a fan that you relish, you enjoy it and you celebrate it...but that's all it is, a moment and moments don't last. They move on. They give way to other moments, moments we don't always relish, enjoy or want to celebrate. Our team enjoys a dramatic victory today and a crushing defeat tomorrow.

That's true in life as well.
1. We all know what it is like to experience some of those great moments in life where all seems to be good and the world, at least for me, seems to be at peace but those moments don't last. What goes up inevitably comes down.
2. Life's mountain-peak experiences are not the normal pattern for life. They are the occasional but welcome and needed excursions from life's typical flow.
3. Life, at least to me and I am not trying to be pessimistic but realistic, seems to be more valley a ...

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