The Little Sisters of the Poor were going from door to door in a French city,
soliciting alms for old people. One nun called at the house of a rich free-thinker who
said he would give 1000 francs if she would have a glass of champagne with him. It was an
embarrassing situation for the nun, and she hesitated. But the hesitation was short--after
all, 1000 francs meant many loaves of bread. A servant brought the bottle and poured, and
the brave little nun emptied the glass. And then she said, "And now, sir, another
glass, please, at the same price." She got it.
Bits & Pieces, April 4, 1991.
Compromise is simply changing the question to fit the answer.
Merrit Malloy, Things
I Meant to Say to You When We Were Old.
When Ralph Houk was manager of the New York Yankees, baseball schedules were even more
exacting than they are now, with double-headers almost every week. Occasionally a player
would get sick of the grind and approach Houk, asking for permission to sit out a game.
"I know how you feel," the manager would say genially. "Sure, take the day
off, But do me a favor. You're in the starting lineup. Just play one inning. Then skip the
rest of the game." The player would honor Houk's request--and almost invariably get
caught up in the spirit of the game and play it out to the end. Phil Rizzuto,
C. Swindoll, Growing Strong, p. 244.
Back in 1931, Irving Thalberg of MGM decided he wanted to buy the film rights to
Tarzan, written by Edgar Rice Burroughs. So Thalberg sent Sam Marx to negotiate with
Burroughs, telling Marx not to spend more than $100,000, an extraordinarily large sum in
those days. Marx contacted Burroughs and asked how much he wanted for the film rights.
"$100,000," said Burroughs. When Marx offered him $25,000, Burroughs walked out
of the meeting. However, Marx and Burroughs continued to negotiate throughout the summer.
Burroughs eventually settled for $40,000. After signing the contract, Burroughs admitted
that he had wanted MGM and Thalberg to make the picture so badly, they could have had it
for nothing if they had insisted. "Mr. Burroughs," replied Marx, "If you
had held out, you would have gotten $100,000!"
During WWI one of my predecessors at Tenth Presbyterian Church, Donald Grey
led the son of a prominent American family to the Lord. He was in the service, but he
showed the reality of his conversion by immediately professing Christ before the soldiers
of his military company. The war ended. The day came when he was to return to his pre-war
life in the wealthy suburb of a large American city. He talked to Barnhouse about life
with his family and expressed fear that he might soon slip back into his old habits. He
was afraid that love for parents, brothers, sisters, and friends might turn him from
following after Jesus Christ. Barnhouse told him that if he was careful to make public
confession of his faith in Christ, he would not have to worry. He would not have to give
improper friends up. They would give him up.
As a result of this conversation the young
man agreed to tell the first ten people of his old set whom he encountered that he had
become a Christian. The soldier went home. Almost immediately--in fact, while he was still
on the platform of the suburban station at the end of his return trip--he met a girl whom
he had known socially. She was delighted to see him and asked how he was doing. He told
her, "The greatest thing that could possibly happen to me has happened."
"You're engaged to be married," she exclaimed. "No," he told her.
"It's even better than that. I've taken the Lord Jesus Christ as my Savior." The
girls' expression froze. She mumbled a few polite words and went on her way. A short time
later the new Christian met a young man whom he had known before going into the service.
"It's good to see you back," he declared. "We'll have some great parties
now that you've returned." "I've just become a Christian," the soldier
said. He was thinking, That's two! Again it was a case of a frozen smile and a quick
change of conversation. After this the same circumstances were repeated with a young
couple and with two more old friends. By this time word had got around, and soon some of
his friends stopped seeing him. He had become peculiar, religious, and -- who knows! --
they may even have called him crazy! What had he done? Nothing but confess Christ. The
same confession that had aligned him with Christ had separated him from those who did not
want Jesus Christ as Savior and who, in fact, did not even want to hear about Him.
J.M. Boice, Christ's Call To Discipleship,
Moody, 1986, p. 122-23.
A New York family bought a ranch out West where they intended to raise cattle. Friends
visited and asked if the ranch had a name. "Well," said the would-be cattleman,
"I wanted to name it the Bar-J. My wife favored Suzy-Q, one son liked the Flying-W,
and the other wanted the Lazy-Y. So we're calling it the
Bar-J-Suzy-Q-Flying-W-Lazy-Y." "But where are all your cattle?" the friends
asked. "None survived the branding."