I was visiting a cattle ranch outside of Memphis. As my friend and I walked to the barn, he took a deep breath and commented, "Doesn't it smell great? I love coming out here. The sights and smells are wonderful!"
A newly-hired salesman stunned his superiors with his first report, for it revealed that he was nearly illiterate. He wrote: "I seen this outfit who aint never got a dimes worth of nuthin from us an sole them sum goods." But before he could be fired, a second letter arrived. It read: "I came to Chicawgo an sole them haff a millyon."
One of today's most successful corporations began in 1916 as a carpenter's shop in Denmark. When the housing market collapsed during the Great Depression, the shop was converted to manufacture toys. When the wooden-toy department burned down in 1960, the company staked its future on the little interlocking plastic bricks it had been making. Today we know the company as Lego, the fifth-largest toymaker in the world, with annual sales of $1 billion.
The story is told of two hunters who came across a bear so big that they dropped their rifles and ran for cover. One man climbed a tree while the other hid in a nearby cave. The bear sat down between the tree and the cave. Suddenly, the hunter in the cave came rushing out, almost ran into the waiting bear, hesitated, and dashed back in. The same thing happened a second time. When he emerged the third time, his friend frantically called out, "Woody, are you crazy? Stay in the cave till he leaves!" "Can't," panted Woody. "There's another bear in there."
Three men were hard at work on a large building project. Someone asked them, "What are you doing?" "I'm mixing mortar," one said. The second man said, "I'm helping put up this great stone wall." But the third man replied, "I'm building a cathedral to the glory of God."
A young man sent a love letter to his girlfriend. It read: "Darling, I'd climb the highest mountain, sail the widest ocean, cross the hottest desert just to see you. P.S.—I'll be over Saturday night if it doesn't rain."
Psalm 40 is tough to take. It recalls a time when David was forced to wait. But as he looked back with a new song in his heart, he saw that the wait was worth it. By implication, when we are in the middle of a muddle, we must wait patiently for the Lord (v.1).