Illustrations

Subject: Satan

The Blindfold Game

When we were kids, on rainy days at school, when we were forced to stay inside during recess, we played a game. One student would be blindfolded, then told to find something in the room [e.g., a chair, a table, the teacher].

Before being blindfolded he was given an opportunity to memorize the way the room looked. The teacher would then spin him round and round; whereupon everyone, including the teacher, would get in his way, or move desks and furniture.

Eventually, someone would feel sorry for him and endeavor to help him, casually bumping him to turn him toward his goal.

We've allowed Satan to become our wicked teacher; he's spun us around and around till we don't know up from down, right from wrong. He moves things around, things we thought we knew very well. His is an evil game of trickery and treachery.

But God heard our cries and sent His Son to turn us toward our goal.

Posted By John Gillmartin to The SHEEP'S CRIB - Illustrations sheepcribone.blogspot.com

 

Subject: About Names

The Name Above All Names

John Lang, writing in The Washington Times (Nov. 1999), said: "Names are going through some strange transformations powerful trends are at play as parents [exercise] their occasionally inspired but often lamented power of naming names into the next millennium."

While Lang was speaking of first names, surnames have also been affected by trends. My surname (Gillmartin; also Gilmartin, Guilmartin and Kilmartin) is of Scotch-Irish origin. Up to the tenth century AD, surnames in Ireland were not hereditary.

Those, like mine, beginning with "Gil-" or "Kil-" (an anglicized version of the Irish Giolla, meaning follower or devotee) reveal the influence of the church: Gillmartin (in Irish Mac Giolla Mhairtin; the prefix Mac meaning "son of") means "son of a follower of Martin"-in this case St. Martin). Similarly, the church is the origin of those names starting with "Mul-," a version of the Irish Maol, meaning bald, applying to monks due to their distinctive hair styling, as well as many others.

The earliest names appear to be those incorporating "" or its earlier form, Ua, meaning "descendant of." So O'Mulrennan ( Maoilbhreanainn) means "descendant of a bald-follower of Brendan"-probably a son or grandson of a monk in an order of St. Brendan.

While many of the names appearing in accounts of the time appear similar to modern Irish names, incorporating the prefix "Mac" or "O," they were in fact not hereditary, lasting only one generation. Hence Turlough mac Airt, was Turlough, son of Art; his son would be Conor mac Turlough, Conor son of Turlough.

Although the making of "fixed" hereditary surnames began early, the process was slow, continuing for over six hundred years. As the population grew and new families were formed, each sought to consolidate its identity by adopting hereditary surnames, usually by simply adding "Mac-" to the first name of the founding ancestor. [Adapted from "The Origins of Irish Surnames" from www.ireland.com on the Internet]

But as names and naming processes go, I much prefer God's way; for under His eternal system, I am Jion O'Gaud simply John, child of God. For He has made me His child and written my name in the Book of Life, using the precious blood of Jesus, the Lamb of God, the Son of God.

And I know, "there is salvation in no one else; for there is no other name under heaven that has been given among men, by which we must be saved." [Acts 4:12]

John Gillmartin,
The SHEEP'S CRIB - Illustrations
sheepcribone.blogspot.com

 

Subject: Giving

Send It on Ahead

When candy manufacturer John S. Huyler started out in business, he pledged 10% of his earnings to God. He opened a special bank account that he initialed "M.P." which stood for "My Partner." As he kept his promise to God, his industry grew at a phenomenal rate, and each week the Lord's treasury received increasingly larger sums. His many gifts and contributions were always accompanied with the request that the recipient offer praise to God alone, for Huyler said, "After all, the money isn't mine; it's the Lord's!"

Dear Friend, do you want God as your partner? Then put Him first in your finances. Tithe to your church and donate generously to His Kingdom. Remember that giving to the Lord can be sweet business!

You can't take money with you when you die, but you can send it on ahead.

Thanks to Ted Matamis

 

Subject: Strength from God

Champ or Tramp

On Jan. 1, 1945, Corrie ten Boom was slated to be executed at Ravensbruck Concentration Camp, for being too old to be a useful worker. Instead, by a "divine clerical error," she was set free and allowed to go home.

She quickly became immersed in being an ambassador for her liberating Savior. She founded rehabilitation homes for victims of concentration camps, and turned her former death camp into a home for refugees. Then she shared her unique experiences with those of us imprisoned by our own self-indlugence, in The Hiding Place, Amazing Love, Tramp for the Lord, and other writings.

Corrie never saw herself as a "champ." Her humble, self-deprecating opinion could be summed up in this quotation: "it is not my ability but my response to God's ability that counts." The Apostle Paul conveyed a similar attitude with a positive spin: "I can do everything through him who gives me strength" (Phil. 4:13).

To become a "champ for the Lord," you must resolve to always be a "tramp for the Lord."

J. Kenneth Bassett
Timeless Signatures
©2003

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