Welcome to Albert's Sermon Illustrations

In this blog, I have collected many stories, quotes, jokes and ideas that I use regularly in my sermons.I have tried to put in the sources and origins of these illustrations. If I have missed some or gotten the wrong sources, please let me know. I will update them. Feel free to use these illustrations for the glory of God. If you have some illustrations that you like to contribute, kindly add them to my blog, so that I and others may benefit from them. God bless!
Reverend Albert Kang

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Monday, November 22, 2010

The Fourth Man On The Life Raft

TBD-1 Devastator of Torpedo Squadron (VT) 6
On 16 January 1942, a TBD-1 Devastator of Torpedo Squadron (VT) 6 off the carrier Enterprise (CV 6) ran out of fuel while on a scouting mission over the Pacific. Operating under strict radio silence, the crew could not send a distress signal, and was forced to ditch their plane in the open ocean, which marked the beginning of an amazing ordeal.

Tony Pastula, Gene Aldrich, & Harold Dixon after their 34 days at sea
With their plane sinking quickly beneath them, the aircraft's crew of Harold F. Dixon, Tony Pastula, and Gene Aldrich scrambled into a 8 ft x 4 ft life raft. With only the limited tools on board the raft, the clothes on their backs, and what they carried in their pockets, the men began a 34 day odyssey adrift at sea, during which they survived on rain water, two birds that they were able to catch, and fish that they speared with a pocket knife one of them had. 

The emaciated airmen at the time of their rescue.
When they washed up in the Danger Islands on 19 February 1942, it was estimated that the trio had traveled a distance of about 1,200 miles.

Harold Dixon, one of the three men on a raft, speaking of the prayer meetings which they held every night: “There was a comfort in passing our burden to someone bigger than we in this empty vastness.  Further, the common devotion drew us together, since it seemed we no longer depended entirely upon each other, but could appeal simultaneously to a Fourth that we three held equally in reverence.”

That reference to a “Fourth” with them in that raft makes one think of those three Hebrew lads in the fiery furnace who prayed to God and put their trust in God, and how, when Nebuchadnezzar come to look into the fiery furnace to see what had happened to them, he saw that they were unharmed by the flames, and lo, in the midst of them, he saw the form of a Fourth, like unto the Son of Man!

That is one of the great blessings of prayer. It puts you into fellowship with the form of a Fourth – with God, with Jesus Christ, the Savior of men.
For many years this raft that the three sailors who lived on for 34 days, was displayed at the U.S. Naval Academy Museum in Annapolis, Maryland.

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