Jump directly to the Content
Jump directly to the Content

Sermon Illustrations

Home > Sermon Illustrations

Children's Book Character Carries His "Sadness Shield"

We all seem to need a strategy for coping with the experience of grief. In the screen adaptation of Maurice Sendak's classic children's book Where the Wild Things Are (2009), we follow the adventures of Max, an imaginative child who feels neglected by his mother and older sister. He escapes into a fantastical world of hairy, monstrous creatures. Once these "wild things" threaten to devour him, Max pretends to possess magical powers and manages to convince the monsters to make him their king.

The creatures come to believe that Max has been sent to abolish suffering in their world and to establish permanent peace and happiness. And so they ask him: "Will you keep out all the sadness?" Still playacting his role as king and miracle worker, Max declares: "I have a sadness shield that keeps out all the sadness, and it's big enough for all of us."

Suggested application: Wouldn't we all like to have a sadness shield to chase away all our grief and sorrow?

Related Sermon Illustrations

"Steel Magnolias": Dealing with a Child's Death

Steel Magnolias is a movie about a group of small-town, southern women whose social lives revolve around meetings at the local beauty parlor.

In this scene, a woman named M'Lynn ...

[Read More]

Grief Means We Are Not Always ‘Fine’

In Wendell Berry’s novel Hannah Coulter, the main character, Hannah, is grieving the death of her first husband, who died in World War II. She offers the following reflection ...

[Read More]