Faithlife Sermons

Missing the Obvious

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Missing the Obvious

One state visit to an Africa, Prince Philip attended a state dinner party, hosted in honor for him. The African waiter who waited to him lean over and asked: “your majesty what would you like, Beef or Duck” The Prince Philip answered, “Tell me about Duck?” The waiter posed for a while and answered: “Well…Duck… is… like…like a chicken, but swims!”

! The Beggars and Emmaus

Dr. Paul Brand told me of a memorable Frenchman named Pierre, who had served in Parliament until he became disillusioned with the slow pace of political change. During a harsh winter, many Parisian beggars froze to death. In desperation, Pierre became a friar to work among them and organize the beggars themselves.

They divided into teams to scour the city for bottles. Next, he led them to build a warehouse out of discarded bricks and start a business processing the bottles. Finally, he gave each beggar responsibility to help another poorer than himself. The project caught on. In a few years he founded the charitable organization Emmaus.

Eventually, there were few beggars to be found in Paris. So Pierre went to India. "If I don't find people worse off than my beggars," he said, "this movement could turn inward. They'll become a powerful, rich organization, and the whole spiritual impact will be lost. They'll have no one to serve."

At a leprosy colony in India, Pierre met patients worse off than his former beggars. Returning to France, he mobilized the beggars to build a leprosy ward at a hospital in India.

"It is you who have saved us," he told the grateful patients. "We must serve or we die."  — Philip Yancey

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