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A young man left his employer, a lumber merchant, and began business in opposition to him. For a while he prospered greatly and got many orders that would have gone to the firm he had left. But just when his business seemed to be most flourishing, and he had more orders than he could supply, a great fire in his yard destroyed all his lumber. The day after the fire he saw his old employer coming toward his office, and he said, “I could have hated him, for I thought he was coming to gloat over my misfortune. But he came to me as a friend in need and said, “I know you are contracted to supply lumber to your customers by certain dates, and this unfortunate fire makes it impossible for you to do it. But my lumberyard is at your disposal. You can have what you need and pay me at your own convenience. Your business may go on as usual.” The young man was overwhelmed by this example; the hatred that he had felt gave place to love.

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