Sunday 26 October 2014


2014-43  Henry Drummond: The Greatest Thing in the World

Henry Drummond [1851-1897]
Henry Drummond was a Scottish evangelical writer and lecturer. In the words of D.L. Moody, "I was staying with a party of friends in a country house during my visit to England in 1884. On Sunday evening as we sat around the fire, they asked me to read and expound some portion of Scripture. Being tired after the services of the day, I told them to ask Henry Drummond, who was one of the party. After some urging, Drummond drew a small Testament from his hip pocket, opened it at the 13th chapter of I Corinthians, and began to speak on the subject of Love

It seemed to me that I had never heard anything so beautiful, and I determined not to rest until I brought Henry Drummond to Northfield to deliver that address. 
Since then I have requested the principals of my schools to have it read before the students every year."

This lecture published in 1874 as "The Greatest Thing in the World" illuminates the I Corinthians 13. Widely read and quoted during his lifetime, it went on to sell over 12 million copies and it continues to influence countless people today to love God and to love one another.

The Holy Bible NIV I Corinthians 13.4-7

I present here only the central idea, namely, the spectrum of love:
Every one has asked himself the great question: What is the summum bonum—the supreme good? We have been accustomed to be told that the greatest thing in the religious world is Faith. In the 13th chapter of I Corinthians, Paul takes us to CHRISTIANITY AT ITS SOURCE; and there we see, "Now abideth Faith, Hope, Love," "The greatest of these is Love." [I Cor. 13.13]
After contrasting Love with these things, Paul gives us an amazing analysis of what this supreme thing is. Paul passes this thing, Love, through the magnificent prism of his inspired intellect, and it comes out on the other side broken up into its constituent elements.

                                           SPECTRUM OF LOVE

The Spectrum of Love has nine ingredients:
"Love suffereth long."
"And is kind."
"Love envieth not."
"Love vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up."
"Doth not behave itself unseemly."
"Seeketh not its own."
Good temper
"Is not provoked."
"Taketh not account of evil."
"Rejoiceth not in unrighteousness, but rejoiceth with the truth."

Patience; kindness; generosity; humility; courtesy; unselfishness; good temper; guilelessness; sincerity—these make up the supreme gift, the stature of the perfect man.
   Now the business of our lives is to have these things fitted into our character. Is life not full of opportunities for learning Love? Everyone, every day has thousands of them. The world is not a playground; it is a class room. Life is not a holiday, but an education.  And the one eternal lesson for us all is how better we can practise love.


"To love abundantly is to live abundantly and to love for ever is to live forever." 
-- Henry Drummond


Sunday 19 October 2014


2014-41  Thomas Hardy Poem: The Blinded [Divine] Bird  
Thomas Hardy [1840-1928]
Thomas HardyOM [1840-1928] was an English novelist and poet. A Victorian realist in the tradition of George Eliot, he was influenced both in his novels and in his poetry by Romanticism, especially William WordsworthCharles Dickens was another important influence. 
While Hardy wrote poetry throughout his life and regarded himself primarily as a poet, his first collection was not published until 1898. Initially, therefore, he gained fame as the author of novels, which include Far from the Madding Crowd [1874], The Mayor of Casterbridge [1886], Tess of the d'Urbervilles [1891], and Jude the Obscure [1895]. Most of his fictional works were set in Wessex, a semi-fictional region in South England

In his Studies in English Literature Series I, Sir Arthur Quiller Couch discusses the Poetry of Thomas Hardy. He says that Hardy’s heart is strangely tender and even Blake's heart was not tenderer than Hardy's. He pauses for proof by one short poem The Blinded Bird, which  I would rather call or rechristen The Divine Bird.  Judge me after studying the poignant poem!



So zestfully canst thou sing?
And all this indignity,
With God's consent, on thee!
Blinded ere yet a-wing
By the red-hot needle thou,
I stand and wonder how
So zestfully thou canst sing!

Resenting not such wrong,
Thy grievous pain forgot,
Eternal dark thy lot,
Groping thy whole life long;
After that stab of fire;
Enjailed in pitiless wire;
Resenting not such wrong!

Who hath charity?This bird.
Who suffereth long and is kind,
Is not provoked, though blind
And alive ensepulchred?
Who hopeth, endureth all things?
Who thinketh no evil, but sings?
Who is divine?This bird.

I quote below four lines from The Holy Bible KJV [I Corinthians Chapter 13 lines 4-8] so that you may be able to appreciate the above poem better on second reading:

4 Charity* suffereth long, and is kind; 
      charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up,
Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own,
      is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil;

Rejoiceth not in iniquity,
      but rejoiceth in the truth;
Beareth all things, believeth all things,
       hopeth all things, endureth all things.
Charity never faileth…

*Charity = Love



Sunday 12 October 2014


42014-42  William Cowper Poem: The Nightingale and Glow-worm

William Cowper [1731-1800]
William Cowper [1731-1800] was an English poet and hymn-writer. One of the most popular poets of his time, Cowper changed the direction of 18th century nature poetry by writing of everyday life and scenes of the English countryside. In many ways, he was one of the forerunners of Romantic poetry. Samuel Taylor Coleridge called him "the best modern poet", whilst William Wordsworth was all praise for his poem Yardley-OakHis religious sentiment and association with John Newton led to much of the poetry for which he is best remembered. His poem "Light Shining out of Darkness" gave the English language the idiom "God moves in a mysterious way / His wonders to perform."

The Nightingale And Glow-worm

A nightingale, that all day long
Had cheer'd the village with his song,
Nor yet at eve his note suspended,
Nor yet when eventide was ended,
Began to feel, as well he might,
The keen demands of appetite;
When, looking eagerly around,
He spied far off, upon the ground,
A something shining in the dark,
And knew the glowworm by his spark;
So stooping down from hawthorn top,
He thought to put him in his crop.

The worm, aware of his intent,
Harangued him thus, right eloquent --
Did you admire my lamp, quoth he,
As much as I your minstrelsy,
You would abhor to do me wrong
As much as I to spoil your song;
For 'twas the selfsame Power Divine
Taught you to sing, and me to shine;
That you with music, I with light,
Might beautify and cheer the night.

The songster heard his short oration,
And warbling out his approbation,
Released him, as my story tells,
And found a supper somewhere else.

Hence jarring sectaries may learn
Their real interest to discern;
That brother should not war with brother,.
And worry and devour each other;
But sing and shine by sweet consent,
Till life's poor transient night is spent,
Respecting in each other's case
The gifts of nature and of grace
Those Christians best deserve the name
Who studiously make peace their aim;
Peace both the duty and the prize 

Of him that creeps and him that flies.


YouTube Video/Audio of The Nightingale and Glow-worm: [Click Here]


 Amazing Video on Waitomo Glow-worm Caves, NZ: [Click Here] 2 min                   

William Cowper - Light and Glory of the World: [Click Here]

Sunday 5 October 2014


2014-40 Jaye Lewis: A Teacher who can Make a Difference - True Story

Jaye Lewis of Encouraging Words, Purely Healthy

About the author, Jaye Lewis, in her own words: "Life is not always what we think it should be. We often have illness take command of our lives. We sometimes give up. However something or someone would not let me give in. I believe that Someone is God, and that something is His Grace. While Faith can move mountains, Grace can change lives.

The title of my new blog is: Please come and join me as I talk about ways to pure health, in spite of illness, age, disability or ability. We can all look for new ways to feel good about ourselves. None of us need give up on life or ourselves. We can find ways to be happy with ourselves, just the way we are." 

"A Teacher who can Make a Difference" - Abridged 

Steve, a twelve-year-old boy with alcoholic parents, was about to be lost forever, by the U.S. education system. Remarkably, he could read, yet, in spite of his reading skills, Steve was failing. He had been failing since first grade, as he was passed on from grade to grade. Steve was a big boy, looking more like a teenager than a twelve year old, yet, Steve went unnoticed... until Miss White.
In the middle of the first semester of school, the entire seventh grade was tested for basic skills. Steve hurried through his tests, and continued to dream of other things. His heart was not in school, but in the woods, where he often escaped alone, trying to shut out the sights, sounds and smells of his alcoholic home. No one checked on him to see if he was safe, no one was sober enough to care. 
Miss White began to go over the test results for the seventh grade. "You all did pretty well," Miss White told the class, "except for one boy, and it breaks my heart to tell you this, but...the smartest boy in the seventh grade is failing my class!" She just stared at Steve, as the class spun around for a good look. Steve dropped his eyes and carefully examined his fingertips.
After that, it was war!! Steve still wouldn't do his homework. Even as the punishments became more severe, he remained stubborn. "Just try it! ONE WEEK!" He was unmoved. "You're smart enough! You'll see a change!" Nothing fazed him. "Give yourself a chance! Don't give up on your life!" Nothing. "Steve! Please! I care about you!" Wow! Suddenly, Steve got it!! Someone CARED ABOUT HIM??!!"
Steve went home from school, thoughtful, that afternoon. Walking into the house, he took one look around. Both parents were passed out, in various stages of undress, and the stench was overpowering! He, quickly, gathered up his camping gear, a jar of peanut butter, a loaf of bread, a bottle of water, and this time...his schoolbooks. Grim faced and determined, he headed for the woods.
The following Monday he arrived at school on time, and he waited for Miss White. She walked in, all sparkle and smiles! She gave a quiz on the weekend homework. Steve hurried through the test, and was the first to hand in his paper. With a look of surprise, Miss White took his paper. She began to look it over. Steve walked back to his desk, his heart pounding within his chest. 
Miss White's face was in total shock! She glanced up at Steve, then down, then up. Suddenly, her face broke into a radiant smile. The smartest boy in the seventh grade had just passed his first test! From that moment nothing was the same for Steve. Life at home remained the same, but life still changed. Steve began to excel! And he continued this course throughout his school life.
After high-school Steve enlisted in the Navy, and he had a successful military career. During that time, he met the love of his life, he raised a family, and he graduated from college Magna Cum Laude. During his Naval career, he inspired many young people, who without him, might not have believed in themselves. Steve began a second career after the Navy, and he continues to inspire others, as an adjunct professor in a nearby college.
Miss White left a great legacy. She saved one boy who has changed many lives. I know, because I am the love of his life. You see, it's simple, really. A change took place within the heart of one boy, all because of one teacher, who cared.

Read the original "The Difference a Teacher Can Make" by Jaye Lewis 
[Click Here]

Know about Jaye Lewis, her Entertaining Angels & Encouraging Words 
[Click Here]