A citizen of the Southwest, hearing his preacher say that a man can do more work in six days than in seven, went to him and said: "I have proved that. When I came West I led the company. When Sunday came I turned my horses out to graze, and got out my Bible to read. The rest asked, 'Why are you not going to travel today?' My answer was, 'I did not leave my religion in the old state. My teams and my family need the rest.' The company moved on, and I did not overtake them the first week until Thursday. The second week I overtook them on Tuesday. After that they never overtook me, and I reached my destination two weeks ahead of all the others, my family well, my teams in good condition, and my wagons sound. The others lost horses; members of their family got sick, and their wagons broke down." The hero was seventy when the story was told; he had always kept the Sabbath, and had seldom missed church.—Sunday School Times.
A farmer once wrote to an editor: "Dear Sir: I have been trying an experiment. I have a field of corn which I plowed on Sunday. I planted it on Sunday. I cultivated it on Sunday. I cut and hauled it to the barn on Sunday. And I find that I have more corn to the acre than has been gathered by any of my neighbors this October."
The farmer sent the letter, sure that the editor could have no answer to the sneer implied in it. But imagine his feelings when in the next issue of the paper. he read his own letter in print, and at the end of it this one sentence: "God does not make full settlement in October."—Home Missions.
A devout Scottish minister has told of a house at which he stopped and spent the Sabbath, when he was in northern Scotland. The day was rainy and close, and he finally suggested to the woman of the house that the window of the little parlor might be raised to admit some fresh air. "Mon," replied the old woman, with stern disapproval showing plainly on her rugged face, "dinna ye ken that ye can hae no fresh air in this house on the Sabbath?"—The Youth's Companion.
It is told of Eric Liddell, who won the four hundred meters race at the Olympic games in Paris, that when he found his race was to be run on the Lord's Day he refused to compete, saying, "I object to Sunday sports in toto," and thus counted himself out. The sporting press of Europe derided him; he was gibed and criticized on all sides, even by the papers of his own country. But the stand taken by such a noted athlete had its effect, and the race was not run until later in the week. He says: "I remember that when I was about to run in the finals the trainer handed me a little note. I opened it and read the words, `Them that honor Me will I honor.' It was God's promise. He helped me, and I won." And the public that had condemned him changed its opinion and gave him great applause.—Youth's Companion.
A good many years ago I was a student of Monmouth College, Monmouth, Ill. On a hot, sultry Sabbath afternoon in September (as I remember), a number of us went down to the Y.M.C.A. rooms to hear an address by a young man, announced as the president of Knox College, at Galesburg, Ill., sixteen miles away. The speaker was sitting on the platform when we arrived and appeared to be an ordinary looking fellow, not very well dressed, and his shoes evidently not recently shined. On being introduced to the handful of Monmouth students who had gathered to hear him, he expressed his appreciation of the privilege of speaking to the boys and explained his personal appearance as due to the fact that not wanting to violate his own or any other one's principles of Sabbath keeping, he had therefore walked over. A walk of sixteen miles on a hot, disagreeable Sabbath afternoon to speak to twenty-five or thirty students from a rival school! Apart from the above remarks, which are, of course, not verbatim, I do not remember a single thing he said, but I have never forgotten the sacrificial thing he did. The speaker was the famous educator, Dr. John H. Finley, later president of the University of New York and now Associate Editor of the New York Times.
A Chinese preacher, speaking of robbing God, used this illustration: "It came to pass that a man went to market with a string of seven coins. Seeing a beggar who asked for alms, he gave the poor man six of the coins and kept one for himself. The beggar, instead of being thankful, followed the good man and stole the seventh coin also. What an abominable wretch! Yes, and would you, to whom God has given six days, steal the seventh also?"—The Presbyterian.
Seventy-five years ago, de Toqueville, a French statesman, visited these shores. The most impressive thing to him was the way the people observed Sunday. Writing about it he said: "I never saw the like. I went over to America and I found a people who on one day every week closed the gateways of their traffic, left the hammer unused upon their anvil, drew chains across the streets where the churches were and where worship was going on,—a whole people resting and worshiping God." One wonders what de Toqueville would write now of the conditions in a great portion of our land today.—Sunday School Times.
A little princess' recovery from a dangerous illness was the occasion of setting apart a special day of quiet thanksgiving by the king, in which none of the peasants were to stir from their homes. Slipping unobserved from the castle with a basket under her arm, the little princess went among the peasants, distributing her gifts among the needy. A strange guard halted her, and in a gruff voice said, "Don't you know this is the special thanksgiving day, when no one is allowed on the streets?" She turned in childish glee, exclaiming, "Yes, but I am the princess, and this is my day."—Sunday School Chronicle.
A parable tells of seven brothers who lived together. Six worked and the seventh cared for the house, having the meals ready and the house bright for his brothers in the evening. But the six said the seventh must work, too. So in the evening they returned home and found the house dark and no meal prepared. Then they saw how foolish they had been, and quickly restored the old way. Sunday is a day among the seven which provides light, comfort and good for the others. If it is driven out to work, the other days will miss its blessing.—Selected.