In April of 2007 Seung-Hui Cho, a senior at Virginia Tech University, went on a rampage. By the time his murderous spree ended by suicide, Cho had killed 32 people and wounded 17 more. Most of those killed were shot as they sat in classes in the engineering school. Cho chained the doors shut to ensure it would be hard for his intended victims to escape. Panic broke out as students began to realize what was happening. When Cho came to one classroom, he found the door barred by the professor, 76 year old Liviu Librescu.
One of the most gifted speakers in church history was John Chrysostom—the name comes from a Greek word meaning “golden tongued.” John was sent from Antioch to what was then Constantinople where he preached fearlessly in the capital of the Eastern Roman Empire. His denunciation of the lavish extravagance of the rich and ruling class and his condemnation of excess infuriated many, including Empress Eudoxia who arranged for him to be exiled.
In the sixteenth century, there was a protestant reformer in England by the name of Hugh Latimer. He was known as a great preacher of his day and as a result he had many opportunities to speak. Once he found that he was to preach before the King Henry VIII of England. As he thought about his great responsibility to bring a message before the king he realized that the message that God laid on his heart was not the message that the king would want to hear.
Famed World War II tank commander General George Patton said, “Courage is fear holding on a minute longer.” If you give in to your fears, you are on the path to defeat. If instead you stand strong in spite of your fears, you are on the path to victory. And we must never forget that we are not in the battle alone. With the power of God on our side, we cannot be defeated.
Often when we ask for a person’s signature, we will call it their “John Hancock.” This is because of the fifty-six signatures on the Declaration of Independence, one stands out above the rest. That signature belongs to John Hancock. He was the first to sign the declaration and he signed it in a large and legible script so that the King of England could read his name without using glasses.
Former President Ronald Reagan says he learned the need for decision-making early in life. An aunt had taken him to a cobbler to have a pair of shoes made for him. The shoemaker asked young Ronald Reagan, “Do you want a square toe or a round toe?”
Reagan hemmed and hawed. So the cobbler said, “Come back in a day or two and let me know what you want.”
A few days later the shoemaker saw Reagan on the street and asked what he had decided about the shoes. “I still haven’t made up my mind,” the boy answered. “Very well,” said the cobbler.
Throughout his administration, Abraham Lincoln was a president under fire, especially during the scarring years of the Civil War. And though he knew he would make errors of office, he resolved never to compromise his integrity. So strong was this resolve that he once said, “I desire so to conduct the affairs of this administration that if at the end, when I come to lay down the reins of power, I have lost every other friend on earth, I shall at least have one friend left, and that friend shall be down inside of me.”
It is said that Napoleon once lost control of his horse and a private jumping into the path of the horse took control of it. Napoleon then said, “Thank you, Captain.” With that one word Napoleon promoted the soldier from the rank of private to captain, but it was because that soldier put his general first.
Likewise, God promises to honor His servants.
Source: Billy Sunday, the Man and His Message, William T. Ellis
I’m part of the fellowship of the unashamed. I have stepped over the line. The decision has been made. I’m a disciple of Jesus Christ. I won’t look back, let up, slow down, back away or be still. My past is redeemed, my future is secure. I’m finished and done with low living, small planning, smooth knees, colorless dreams, tamed visions, mundane talking, cheap living and dwarfed goals.
Napoleon made a mistake when he said that God is on the side of the strongest battalion. This statement has been proven wrong many times in the Bible and throughout history.
Abraham took 318 men and defeated 4 kings and their armies. Gideon with his 300 dedicated men defeated an army of thousands. David, a shepherd lad, untrained for war and armed with only a sling, killed a giant nine feet tall.
Three recruiters were to address high school seniors. Each recruiter represented a branch of the military (the Army, Navy, and Marine Corps) and was to have fifteen minutes. The Army and Navy recruiters got carried away, so when it came time for the Marine to speak, he had just two minutes. He walked up and stood utterly silent for a full sixty seconds, half of his time. Then he said, “I doubt whether there are two or three of you in this room who would even stand a chance in the Marine Corps.
A federal judge ordered New Orleans to open its public school to African-American children. The white parents decided that, if they had to let black children in, they would keep their children out. They let it be known that any black children who came to school would be in for trouble. So the black children stayed home, too—except six-year-old Ruby Bridges. Her parents sent her to school all by herself.
Admiral Heihachiro Togo, whose brilliant tactics had destroyed the Russian fleet at the battle of the Sea of Japan in 1905, visited the United States shortly after the Russo-Japanese War. At a state dinner in Admiral Togo’s honor, William Jennings Bryan was asked to propose a toast. Because Bryan was well known as a strict teetotaler, it was feared that an embarrassing breakdown of protocol was about to occur. But as Bryan stood to propose his toast, he held up his glass and said, “Admiral Togo has won a great victory on water, and I will therefore toast him in water.