Walking past my barn one day, I heard a frantic chirping inside, and upon investigation I found a bluejay beating its wings against the glass pane of the window. Had it not cried and squawked, I would not have heard it. But its plaintive note prompted me to open the door wide and the jay flew out to liberty.
A farmer had a weather vane on his barn, on which was written "God is love." When friends asked why, the farmer said, "This is to remind me that no matter which way the wind blows, God is love."
Two gardens are mentioned prominently in the Bible: the garden of Eden and the garden of Gethsemane. God placed the first man, Adam, in the garden of Eden; Jesus went into Gethsemane to restore what the first man had lost.
Who is not inspired by the competitor who makes a comeback after being down and seemingly out of the running! The runner who stumbles while coming off the starting blocks but moves gradually into the lead stirs the imagination of us all. The team that can come from behind in the last moments to win excites us even more than the team that constantly wins by scoring big in the first part of the game.
Our neighbor was startled when two young men walked into her home uninvited. She screamed, and they ran out. Yet no one would accuse her of failing to be hospitable. If you enter someone’s house, you come in on that person’s terms.
It is wonderful to be young, with clear sight, acute hearing, elastic step, pulses drumming to the march of exhilarating health. But old age has glories that youth cannot know. It is a blessed old age indeed if it ends brightly at evening time.
A young cowboy with no regard for God traveled to San Francisco and began a life of revelry, spending the money he had earned while working on the range. One night he staggered to his hotel room and slept until late the next day. When he awoke, he saw a small book on a nightstand near his bed and picked it up. It was the gospel of Mark. Disgusted, he threw it on the floor.
When Joseph revealed his identity to his brothers who had sold him into slavery, they were speechless and "dismayed in his presence" (Genesis 45:3). Fear and guilt quickly reminded them of the heartache they had caused their aged father Jacob, as well as their brother. Joseph, sensing what was going on in their hearts, immediately reassured them before the seeds of self-blame could take root. He said, "Do not therefore be grieved or angry with yourselves because you sold me here" (v.5). Joseph knew that God had used his trials for the good of many people.
Isaac Asimov tells the story of a rough ocean crossing during which a Mr. Jones became terribly seasick. At an especially rough time, a kindly steward patted Jones on the shoulder and said, "I know, sir, that it seems awful. But remember, no man ever died of sea-sickness." Mr. Jones lifted his green countenance to the steward’s concerned face and replied, "Man, don’t say that! It’s only the wonderful hope of dying that keeps me alive."
A woman was trapped on the top floor of a burning building. Flames and smoke blocked every way of escape. When firefighters arrived, one of the men scrambled up a ladder to the window where the woman was screaming for help, and with outstretched arms he offered to save her. But when she looked down and saw the great distance to the ground below, she panicked and drew back into the room.