A GOOD NAME I NEVER MET
In his book, I Almost Missed The Sunset, Bill Gaither writes:
Gloria and I had been married a couple of years. We were teaching school in Alexandria, Indiana, where I had grown up, and we wanted a piece of land where we could build a house. I noticed the parcel south of town where cattle grazed, and I learned it belonged to a 92-year-old retired banked named Mr. Yule. He owned a lot of land in the area, and word was he would sell none of it. He gave the same speech to everyone who inquired: "I promised the farmers they could use it for their cattle."
Gloria and I visited him at the bank. Although he was retired, he spent a couple of hours each morning in his office. He looked at us over the top of his bifocals.
I introduced myself and told him we were interested in a piece of his land. "Not selling," he said pleasantly. "Promised it to a farmer for grazing."
"I know, but we teach school here and thought maybe you'd be interested in selling it to someone planning to settle in the area."
He pursed his lips and stared at me. "What'd you say your name was?"
"Gaither. Bill Gaither."
"Hmmm. Any relation to Grover Gaither?"
"Yes, sir. He was my granddad."
Mr. Yule put down his paper and removed his glasses. "Interesting. Grover Gaither was the best worker I ever had on my farm. Full day's work for a day's pay. So honest. What'd you say you wanted?"
I told him again.
"Let me do some thinking on it, then come back and see me."
I came back within the week, and Mr. Yule told me he had had the property appraised. I held my breath. "How does $3,800 sound? Would that be okay?"
If that was per acre, I would have to come up with nearly $60,000! "$3,800?" I repeated.
"Yup. Fifteen acres for $3,800."
I knew it had to be worth at least three times that. I readily accepted.
Nearly three decades later, my son and I strolled that beautiful, lush property that had once been pasture land. "Benjy," I said, "you've had this wonderful place to grow up through nothing that you've done, but because of the good name of a great-granddad you never met."
"A good name is more desirable than great riches; to be esteemed is better than silver or gold." (Prov. 22:1).
Related Sermon Illustrations
Contributed by Jonathan Busch on Aug 18, 2002
A woman went to the doctors office, where she was seen by one of the new doctors, but after about 4 minutes in the examination room, she burst out, screaming as she ran down the hall. An older doctor stopped her and asked what the problem was, and she told him her story. After listening, he had her ...read more
Contributed by David Schaal on May 20, 2004
A natural example of this point can be found by looking at the two seas in the Holy Land. The Sea of Galilee freely receives and gives out water. It has an abundance of life, nurturing many different kinds of fish and plant life. The water from the Sea of Galilee is carried by way of the Jordan ...read more
Contributed by David Elvery on Nov 14, 2004
There was once a Christian celebration on the west coast of Africa, when converted natives brought of their meager possessions to show their devotion to Christ, a young girl only recently saved from paganism brought a silver coin worth about eighty-five cents, and handed this to the missionary as ...read more
Contributed by Jason Cole on Mar 15, 2004
Four high school boys were late to their morning classes one day. They entered the classroom and solemnly told their teacher they were detained due to a flat tire. The sympathetic teacher smiled and told them it was too bad they were late because they had missed a test that morning. But she was ...read more
What Kids Need PRO
Contributed by Lyn King on Jun 15, 2002
WHAT KIDS NEED Today’s kids desperately need Dads who: . . . play catch, enjoy tea parties or wrestle because the heart of a child is there and they set out to capture it. . . . laugh till their belly hurts and tears fall from their eyes while secretly creating deep friendships and memories ...read more