I have wept in the night
For the shortness of sight,
That to somebody's need made me blind;
But I never have yet
Felt a twinge of regret,
For being a little too kind.—Christian Herald.
Abraham Lincoln during the Civil War frequently visited the hospitals and addressed cheering words to the wounded warriors. On one occasion he found a young fellow whose legs had been amputated, and who was evidently sinking rapidly. "Is there anything I can do for you?" asked Lincoln. "You might write a letter to my mother," was the faint reply. The President wrote at the youth's dictation: "My dearest mother: I have been shot bad, but am bearing up. I tried to do my duty. They tell me I cannot recover. God bless you and Father; kiss Mary and John for me." At the end were these words as postscript: "Written by Abraham Lincoln." When the boy perused the epistle and saw these added words, he looked with astonishment at the visitor and asked, "Are you our President?" "Yes," was the quiet answer, "and now that you know that, is there anything else I can do for you?" Feebly the lad said, "I guess you might hold my hand, and see me through." So, sitting down at the bedside, the tall, gaunt man with a heart as tender as a woman's held the soldier's hand through the livelong night till it grew cold and rigid. Is it not a precious truth that Christ, the greatest of all kings, in our affliction is afflicted, and that He can be "touched with the feeling of our infirmities"?—The Illustrator.
A minister in London, England, called one day to see a street-crossing sweeper in his parish who was ill. Upon asking him whether anyone had called to see him, the sweeper replied: "Yes, Mr. Gladstone called." "Which Mr. Gladstone?" asked the minister. "Mr. William Gladstone!" replied the poor sick man. "How came he to see you?"
"Well," answered the sweeper, "he always had a nice word for me when he passed my crossing, and when I was not there, he missed me. He asked the man who had taken my place where I was, and when he was told, he put it down on paper, so he called to see me." "And what did he do?" asked the minister. "He read the Bible and prayed with me." Now that is what I call sitting on top of the world; taking Jesus as Saviour and Lord, and giving to mankind the blessing of Christian life.—Gospel Herald.
A story is told of a certain British regiment in India which was called upon to undergo "Kitchener's Test," i.e., to march a certain number of miles along a sandy track in a specified time without one man falling out. After covering a part of the distance a young recruit marching by the side of an "old timer" named Bill, said to him: "Bill, I can't stick it." The heat was terrific and the lad was well-nigh overcome. Bill, seeing it, said: "Here, give me your rifle." After another two miles, Bill noticing again the lad's distress, took over another part of his equipment, and before they had gone all the way he was carrying the remainder of the boy's kit. At the command "Halt" every man was in his place and the honor of the regiment saved. Unload all your burdens upon Him (your Friend) for He careth for you.—Jamaica Wesleyan Record.
A short time ago a friend wrote me of an interesting experience that a traveling friend had reported to her. A member of her party, traveling in Palestine, was being driven by an Arab chauffeur. On the way there was a man—a Jew—who was having serious car trouble. The Arab stopped and tried to help with the car, but they did not have the parts for repair. So the Jew was invited to get into the Arab's car and ride to a garage for help. After the man had been left at the garage and the party was on its way again, surprise was expressed at the Arab's kind treatment of the Jew. "I did not know that Arabs were so friendly to Jews," the traveler said. The Arab answered, "Oh, but I am a Christian."—Junior Life (Richmond, Va.).
Rev. Ira Gillett, missionary to Portuguese East Africa, tells the story of a group of natives who made a long journey and walked past a government hospital to come to the mission hospital for treatment. When asked why they had walked the extra distance to reach the mission hospital when the same medicines were available at the government institution, they replied, "The medicines may be the same, but the hands are different."—Upper Room.
A gentleman of Sedalia, Missouri, had occasion to go to a neighboring town in the caboose of a fast freight. A fellow passenger was a carpenter loaded with a heavy bag of tools. Somehow this man stumbled over a tub of grease of some sort, which had melted in the heat, and spilled it over the clean caboose floor. He was trying to mop it up with some old sacks when the conductor came in. The carpenter was trying to apologize, but the hot-tempered conductor flew into a rage and for fully five minutes heaped upon him such a torrent of abuse as made the listener's blood run cold. At the next station the man was getting off, and noticing that he looked white and sick, the Sedalia man offered to help him off with his load of tools. The other gave him a peculiar look but said nothing, which he construed as consent, and helped him off. Six years later a man stopped him on the street, asking if he remembered him. He did not, until the man mentioned the incident. "You did a most wonderful service for me that day," he said. "It was only a little act, but it saved me from being a murderer, for I had fully decided to bury my hammer in that conductor's head. Your kind words, breaking so unexpectedly on my dark feelings, caused me to keep back the mad impulse, and I am a free man today. God bless you! I shall never forget it." His heart was too full for reply, but as they clasped hands the tears stood in the eyes of both.—Condensed from the Sunday School Times.
Several years ago a house was constructed across from our house, a house which my husband dubbed "the green atrocity." It was a poorly-built, small-town tenement, painted an unpleasant shade of green, and designed to house four or more poor families. Not only that, but it stood between us and a view of our beloved Rocky Mountains. The house was soon filled with Mexican families who had come to town after the beet harvest was finished in the fall. For days I could think of nothing except the fact that I resented that house being there. Then one day the realization came to me: "You believe in the Christian Friendliness program of your church, and here is a laboratory at your door in which you can experiment in being the friendly neighbor, if you but will." I am not sure that I said the exact words, "Here am I, Lord; send me," but I did go over to visit my neighbors. Our family receive more than we gave, and some of the friendships formed with our unwanted neighbors have continued through the years. So the "green atrocity" was really a golden opportunity knocking at my door and saying, "Come over and find out who is your neighbor."—Lula Pulliam Colwell, in the Secret Place.