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John D. Rockefeller, Sr., was strong and husky when he was a youth. He early determined to earn money and drove himself to the limit. At age 33, he earned his first million dollars. At age 43, he controlled the biggest company in the world. At age 53, he was the richest man on earth and the world’s only billionaire.

Then he developed a sickness called "alopecia," where the hair of his head dropped off, his eyelashes and eyebrows disappeared, and he was shrunken like a mummy. His weekly income was one million dollars, but he digested only milk and crackers. He was so hated in Pennsylvania that he had to have bodyguards day and night. He could not sleep, stopped smiling long since, and enjoyed nothing in life.

The doctors predicted he would not live past another year. The newspaper had gleefully written his obituary in advance—for convenience in sudden use. Those sleepless nights set him thinking. He realized with a new light that he "could not take one dime into the next world." Money was not everything. God was displeased with his sinful life. Then and there he surrendered His life to Christ, repenting of his sins and pleading for God to change his heart.

The next morning he awoke a new man. He began to help churches with his amassed wealth; the poor and needy were not overlooked. He established the Rockefeller Foundation whose funding of medical researches led to the discovery of penicillin and other wonder drugs. John D. began to sleep well, eat and enjoy life. You could say he began to live life to the fullest!

The doctors had predicted he would not live over age 54. He lived to be 98 years old.

(Encyclopedia of 15,000 Illustrations. From a sermon by Scott Walker, The Good and Beautiful God: God Is Holy, 9/12/2011)

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