27 January 2013

posted 24 Jan 2013, 20:45 by C S Paul

27 January 2013

What do women really want?

Young King Arthur was ambushed and imprisoned by the monarch of a neighboring kingdom. The monarch could have killed him but was moved by Arthur's youth and ideals. So, the monarch offered him his freedom, as long as he could answer a very difficult question. Arthur would have a year to figure out the answer and, if after a year, he still had no answer, he would be put to death.

The question?....What do women really want? Such a question would perplex even the most knowledgeable man, and to young Arthur, it seemed an impossible query. But, since it was better than death, he accepted the monarch's proposition to have an answer by year's end.

He returned to his kingdom and began to poll everyone: the princess, the priests, the wise men and even the court jester. He spoke with everyone, but no one could give him a satisfactory answer. Many people advised him to consult the old witch, for only she would have the answer. But the price would be high; as the witch was famous throughout the kingdom for the exorbitant prices she charged.

The last day of the year arrived and Arthur had no choice but to talk to the witch She agreed to answer the question, but he would have to agree to her price first. The old witch wanted to marry Sir Lancelot, the most noble of the Knights of the Round Table and Arthur's closest friend! Young Arthur was horrified. She was hunchbacked and hideous, had only one tooth, smelled like sewage, made obscene noises, etc. He had never encountered such a repugnant creature in all his life.

He refused to force his friend to marry her and endure such a terrible burden; but Lancelot, learning of the proposal, spoke with Arthur. He said nothing was too big of a sacrifice compared to Arthur's life and the preservation of the Round Table.

Hence, a wedding was proclaimed and the witch answered Arthur's question thus: What a woman really wants, she answered....is to be in charge of her own life! Everyone in the kingdom instantly knew that the witch had uttered a great truth and that Arthur's life would be spared. And so it was, the neighboring monarch granted Arthur his freedom and Lancelot and the witch had a wonderful wedding.

The honeymoon hour approached and Lancelot, steeling himself for a horrific experience, entered the bedroom. But, what a sight awaited him. The most beautiful woman he had ever seen lay before him on the bed. The astounded Lancelot asked what had happened

The beauty replied that since he had been so kind to her when she appeared as a witch, she would henceforth, be her horrible deformed self only half the time and the beautiful maiden the other half. Which would he prefer? Beautiful during the day...or night?

Lancelot pondered the predicament. During the day, a beautiful woman to show off to his friends, but at night, in the privacy of his castle, an old witch? Or, would he prefer having a hideous witch during the day, but by night, a beautiful woman for him to enjoy wondrous intimate moments?

Noble Lancelot said that he would allow HER to make the choice herself. Upon hearing this, she announced that she would be beautiful all the time because he had respected her enough to let her be in charge of her own life.

Beware of Terrorists Groups in Church
 Author Unknown 

Latest news reports are that five terrorist cell groups have been operating in many of our churches.

They have been identified as: Bin Sleepin, Bin Arguin, Bin Fightin, Bin Complainin, and Bin Missin. Their leader, Lucifer Bin Workin, trained these groups to destroy the Body of Christ. The plan is to come into the church disguised as Christians and to work within the church to discourage, disrupt, and destroy.

However, there have been reports of a sixth group.

A tiny cell known by the name Bin Prayin is actually the only effective counter terrorism force in the church. Unlike other terrorist cells, the Bin Prayin team does not blend in with whoever and whatever comes along. Bin Prayin does whatever is needed to uplift and encourage the Body of Christ.

We have noticed that the Bin Prayin cell group has different characteristics than the others. They have Bin Watchin, Bin Waitin, Bin Fastin, and Bin Longin for their Master, Jesus Christ to return.

No church is exempt! You can spot them if you bin lookin and bin goin.

A story for Passover
Eric Lee

A good Passover story should always involve cakes. Austrian baker Manfred Klaschka is the subject of this year’s story. He was in the news because of his most recent catalogue of cake designs; Klaschka is a pastry specialist.

Of course, Austrian pastries are famous the world over. Now, pastry baker Manfred Klaschka’s most recent catalogue of such tasty delights was in the news this week because it included cakes decorated with swastikas – as well as one with a baby raising its right arm in a Nazi salute.

Herr Klaschka insists he is not a Nazi. After the news story broke, he even met with a Holocaust awareness group, and apologized for what he had done, and he then baked a cake to say he was sorry – a cake with Jewish and Christian symbols. The point of the story – the bit I found interesting – is Herr Klaschka’s explanation for what he did.

"I see it was a mistake, anyone who knows me knows what kind of person I am. I am no Nazi", said Klaschka, who had earlier said he was just a pastry maker fulfilling his customers’ wishes. Fulfilling his customers’ wishes? There is a market in Austria in 2011 for cakes with babies raising their arms in Nazi salutes, cakes with swastikas on them? There are parties where people serve such cakes? Maybe birthday parties for babies?

Of course there are such people, and there are such parties, and because of that, there is a market – there is consumer demand – for swastika cakes. Which is why Herr Klaschka was happy to bake them. And not only in Austria.

You may remember the case of the Campbell family from New Jersey.

When Kurt Waldheim was exposed as a war criminal his popularity rose. The neo-Nazi Freedom Party headed by the late Jorg Haider, won 27% of the vote in the 2000 elections and became part of the coalition government – the first time since 1945 that Nazis had sat in a European government.

But this never happened in New Jersey – which is why I want to talk about the Campbell family. The Campbell family in New Jersey made the news back in 2008 when they tried to get a birthday cake made for their son — they have a son and two daughters — at the local Shop Rite in Holland Township.The store refused their request.

And the reason was that Mr. Campbell wanted the cake to read "Happy birthday Adolf Hitler". Because, you see, his son’s name was Adolf Hitler Campell. One of the daughters is named is named JoyceLynn Aryan Nation Campbell. Well, you get the point.

When I read about the Austrian baker Manfred Klaschka, I thought – here was a marketing opportunity for him. He would have happily baked a cake for the Campbell family. So what does all this have to do with Passover?

This week, when we are forbidden to eat Sachertore or Linzer tort or even the delightfully named Punschkrapfen, we might want to pause and think about something we say every year at the Passover seder: 'In every generation it is the duty of man to consider himself as if he had come forth from Egypt'.

Because in this generation, as in all others, there are those who order custom-made swastika cakes. There are those who name their children after Adolf Hitler. And there are others who fire anti-tank missiles at school busses with Jewish children in them. Because there are those who are building nuclear weapons, having told the world that their intention is to wipe the Jewish state off the face of the earth. Because people like that make Pharaoh look like a nice guy. Because getting out of the house of bondage, out of slavery in Egypt, was not the end of the story for the Jewish people, but was the beginning.

It is a story of a never-ending struggle for freedom, for dignity, for respect, for human rights, that has universal resonance and meaning — for all people, everywhere, always.

The story of charlie coulson
source www.inspire21.com

I was a surgeon in the United States Army during the Civil War. After the battle of Gettysburg, there were hundreds of wounded soldiers in my hospital. Many were wounded so severely that a leg or an arm, or sometimes both, needed to be amputated.

One of these was a boy who had been in the service for only 3 months. Since he was too young to be a soldier, he had enlisted as a drummer. When my assistants came to give him chloroform before the amputation, he turned his head and refused it. When they told him that it was the doctor's orders, he said, "Send the doctor to me."

I came to his bedside and said, "Young man, why do you refuse the chloroform? When I picked you up on the battlefield, you were so far gone that I almost didn't bother to pick you up. But you opened those large blue eyes, it occurred to me that you had a mother somewhere who might be thinking of you that very moment. I didn't want you to die on the field, so I had you brought here. But you've lost so much blood that you've just too weak to live through an operation without chloroform. You'd better let me give you some."

He laid his hand on mine, looked at me in the face and said, "Doctor, one Sunday afternoon, when I was nine and a half years old, I gave my life to Christ. I learned to trust Him then, I know I can trust Him now. He is my strength. He will support me while you amputate my arm and leg."

I asked him if he would at least let me give him a little brandy.

Again he looked at me and said, "Doctor, when I was about 5 years old, my mother knelt by my side with her arms around me and said, ‘Charlie, I am praying to Jesus that you will never take even one drink of alcohol. Your father died a drunkard, and I've asked God to use you to warn people against the dangers of drinking, and to encourage them to love and serve the Lord.’ I am now 17 years old, and I have never had anything stronger than tea or coffee. There is a very good chance that I am about to die and go into the presence of my God. Would you send me there with brandy on my breath?"

I will never forget that look that boy gave me. At that time I hated Jesus, but I respected that boy's loyalty to His Saviour. And when I saw how he loved and trusted Him to the very end, something deeply touched my heart. I did for that boy what I had never done for any other soldier – I asked him if he wanted to see his chaplain.

The Chaplain knew the boy well from having seen him often at the tent prayer meetings. Taking his hand he said, "Charlie, I am sorry to see you like this."

"Oh, I am all right, sir," answered Charlie. "The doctor offered me chloroform, but I told him I didn't want any. Then he wanted to give me brandy, which I didn't want either. So now, if my Saviour calls me I can go to Him in my right mind."

"You must not die, Charlie," said the chaplain, "but if the Lord does call you home, is there anything I can do for you after you're gone?"

"Chaplain, please reach under my pillow and take my little Bible. My mother's address is inside. Please send it to her and write a letter for me. Tell her that since I left home, I have never let a single day pass – no matter if we were on the march, on the battlefield, or in the hospital – without reading a portion of the God's word, and daily praying that He would bless her."

"Is there anything else I can do for you, my lad?" asked the chaplain.

"Yes- please write a letter to the Sunday School teacher of the Sands Street Church in Brooklyn, New York. Tell him that I've never forgotten his encouragement, good advice, and many prayers for me. They have helped me and comforted me through all the dangers of battle. And now, in my dying hour, I thank the Lord for my dear old teacher, and ask Him to bless and strengthen him. That is all."

Then turning to me, he said, "I'm ready, doctor. I promise I won't even groan while you take off me arm and leg if you don't offer me chloroform."

I promised, but I didn't have the courage to take knife in my hand without first going into the next room and taking a little brandy myself.

While cutting through the flesh, Charlie Coulson never groaned. But when I took the saw to separate the bone, the lad took the corner of his pillow in his mouth and all I could hear him whisper was, "O Jesus, blessed Jesus! Stand by me now." He kept his promise. He never groaned.

I couldn't sleep that night. Whichever way I tossed and turned, I saw those soft blue eyes, the words, "Blessed Jesus! Stand by me now.'' Kept ringing in my ears. A little after midnight, I finally left my bed and visited the hospital – something I had never done before unless there was an emergency. I had such a strange and strong desire to see that boy.

When I got there, an orderly told me that 16 of the badly wounded soldiers had died. "Was Charlie Coulson, one of them?" I asked.

"No, sir," he answered, "he's sleeping as sweet as a babe."

When I came to his bed, one of the nurses said that at about 9 o'clock two members of the YMCA came through the hospital to sing a hymn. The Chaplain was with them, he knelt by Charlie's bed and offered a fervent and soul-stirring prayer. Then, while still on their knees, they sang one of the sweetest of all hymns, "Jesus, Lover Of My Soul." Charlie sang along with them, too. I couldn't understand how that boy, who was in such horrible pain, could sing.

Five days after I performed the operation, Charlie sent for me, and it was from him that I heard my first Gospel sermon. "Doctor," he said, "my time has come. I don't expect to see another sunrise. I want to thank you with all my heart for your kindness to me. I know you are Jewish, and that you do not believe in Jesus, but I want you to stay and see me die trusting me Saviour to the last moment of me life." I tried to stay, but I just couldn't – I didn't have the courage to stand by and see a Christian boy die rejoicing in the love of that Jesus who I hated. So I hurriedly left the room.

About 20 minutes later an orderly came and found me sitting in my office with my hands covering my face. He told me that Charlie wanted to see me. "I've just seen him," I answered. "and I can't see him again."

"But, doctor, he says he must see you once more before he dies.'

So I made up my mind to go and see Charlie, say an endearing word and let him die. However, I was determined that nothing he could say would influence me in the least bit, so far as his Jesus was concerned.

When I entered the hospital I saw he was sinking fast, so I sat down by his bed. Asking me to take his hand, he said, "Doctor, I love you because you are a Jew. The best friend I've found in the world was a Jew." I asked him who that was, and he answered, "Jesus Christ, and I want to introduce you to Him before I die. Will you promise me, doctor that what I am about to say to you, you will never forget?" I promised, and he said, "5 days ago, while you amputated my arm and leg, I prayed to the Lord Jesus Christ and asked Him to make His love known to you."

Those words went deep in my heart. I couldn't understand how, when I was causing him the most intense pain, he could forget about himself and think of nothing but the Saviour and my unconverted soul Ail I could say to him was, "Well, my dear boy, you will soon be all right." With these words I left him, and 12 minutes later, he fell asleep, safe in the arms of Jesus.

Hundreds of soldiers died in my hospital during the war, but I only followed one to the grave, and that was Charlie Coulson. I rode 3 miles to see him buried. I had him dressed in a new uniform, and placed in an officer's coffin, with a United States flag over it.

That boy's dying words made a deep impression on me. I was rich at that time so as far as money was concerned, but I would have given every penny I possessed if I could have felt towards Christ as Charlie did. But that feeling cannot be bought with money. Alas, I soon forgot all about my Christian soldier's little sermon, but I could not forget the boy himself. Looking back, I now know I was under deep conviction of sin at that time. But for nearly 10 years I held back, until finally the dear boy's prayer was answered, and I surrendered my life to the love of Jesus.

About a year and a half after my conversion, I went to a prayer meeting one evening in Brooklyn. It was one of those meetings where Christians testify about the loving kindness of God. After several had spoken, an elderly lady stood up and said, "Dear friends, this may be the last time I have a chance to publicly share how good the Lord has been to me. My doctor told me yesterday that my right lung is nearly gone, and my left lung is failing fast, so at the best I only have a short time to be with you. But what is left of me belongs to Jesus. It's a great joy to know that I shall soon meet my son with Jesus in heaven.

"Charlie was not only a soldier for his country, but also a soldier for Christ. He was wounded at the battle of Gettysburg, and was cared for by a Jewish doctor, who amputated his arm and leg. He died 5 days after the operation. The chaplain of the regiment wrote me a letter and sent me my boy's Bible. I was told that in his dying hour, my Charlie sent for that Jewish doctor and said to him, "5 days ago, while you amputated my arm and leg, I prayed to the Lord Jesus Christ for you."

As I heard this lady speak, I just couldn't sit still! I left my seat, ran across the room and took her hand and said, "God bless you, my dear sister. Your boy's prayer has been heard and answered! I am the Jewish doctor that Charlie prayed for, and his Saviour is now my Saviour! The love of Jesus has won my soul!"

A true account about "Charlie Coulson - The Christian Drummer Boy" taken from an old, out of print book called "Touching Incidents and Remarkable Answers to Prayers." 

Just for Laughs

God is Missing

A couple had two little boys, ages 8 and 10, who were excessively mischievous. They were always getting into trouble, and their parents knew that, if any mischief occurred in the town, their sons were probably involved. 

The boys' mother heard that a clergyman in town had been successful in disciplining children, so she asked if he would speak with her boys. The clergyman agreed, but asked to see them individually. 

So the mother sent her 8-year-old first, in the morning, with the older boy to see the clergyman in the afternoon. 

The clergyman, a huge man with a booming voice, sat the younger boy down and asked him sternly, "Where is God?". 

The boy's mouth dropped open, but he made no response, just sitting there with his mouth hanging open, wide-eyed. 

The clergyman repeated the question in an even sterner tone, "Where is God!!?" Again the boy made no attempt to answer. 

The clergyman raised his voice even more, shook his finger in the boy's face and bellowed, "WHERE IS GOD!!?" 

The boy screamed and bolted from the room, ran directly home and dived into his closet, slamming the door behind him. 

When his older brother found him in the closet and asked, "What happened?" 

The younger brother, gasping for breath, replied, "We are in BIG trouble this time, dude. God is missing -- and they think WE did it!" 

Going to Hell ?

A man sobering up from the night before is sitting through the Sunday sermon, finding it long and boring. Still feeling hung over and tired, he finally nods off.

The priest has been watching him all along, noticing his apparent hangover and is disgusted. At the end of the sermon, the preacher decides to make an example of him. He says to his congregation, "All those wishing to have a place in heaven, please stand." The whole room stands up, except of course, the sleeping man. Then the preacher says even more loudly, "And he who would like to find a place in hell please STAND UP!"

The weary man catching only the last part groggily stands up, only to find that he's the only one standing. Confused and embarrassed he says, "I don't know what we're voting on here Father, but it sure seems like you and me are the only ones standing for it!"

Did You Know ?

  • Dogs have two sets of teeth, just like humans. They first have 30 "puppy" teeth, then 42 adult teeth. 
  • In 1950, President Harry Truman threw out the first ball twice at the opening day Washington DC baseball game; once right handed and once left handed. 
  • A Swiss ski resort announced it would combat global warming by wrapping its mountain glaciers in aluminum foil to keep them from melting. 
  • The chameleon has a tongue that is one and a half times the length of his body. 
  • Beethoven dipped his head in cold water before he composed. 
  • There once was a town named "6" in West Virginia. 
  • Ten years ago, only 500 people in China could ski. This year, an estimated 5,000,000 Chinese will visit ski resorts. 
  • Toxic house plants poison more children than household chemicals. 
  • Chicago is closer to Moscow than it is to Rio de Janeiro. 
  • The biggest dog on record was an Old English Mastiff that weighed 343 pounds. He was 8 feet, 3 inches from nose to tail. 
  • Mailmen in Russia now carry revolvers after a recent decision by the government. 
  • All of Queen Anne's 17 children died before she did. 


by Lew Wallace

Part Four

Judah Ben-Hur trains for five years in the Palaestra in Rome and becomes the heir of the deceased Arrius. Judah goes to Antioch on state business. On the voyage, he learns that his real father's chief servant, Simonides, lives in a house in this city, and that his father's possessions had been entrusted to him. He pays a visit to the house and tells his full story to Simonides, who demands more proof. Ben-Hur replies he has no proof, but asks whether they know the fate of Judah's mother and sister. He says he knows nothing and Judah Ben-Hur leaves the house with an apology. Simonides hires his servant Malluch to spy on Judah to see if his story is true and find more information. Malluch meets and befriends Judah in the Grove of Daphne and they go to the games stadium together. There, Ben-Hur finds his old rival Messala racing one of the chariots, preparing for a tournament.

A prosperous Arab of Antioch, Sheik Ilderim, announces that he is looking for a chariot driver to race his team in the coming tournament. Judah, wanting revenge on Messala, decides to drive the sheik's chariot and defeat Messala. Meanwhile, Balthasar and his daughter Iras are sitting at a fountain in the stadium. Messala's chariot nearly hit them but Judah intervenes. Balthasar thanks Ben-Hur and presents him with a gift. Judah heads to Sheik Ilderim's tent. The servant Malluch follows him there, and along the way they talk about the Christ and Malluch relates Balthasar's story of the Magi. They realize that the man rescued at the fountain was the same Balthasar that saw the Christ's birth.

Back at Simonides' house, Esther, Simonides and Malluch talk together, and conclude that Ben-Hur is who he claims to be, and that he is on their side in the fight against Rome.

Messala realizes that Judah Ben-Hur has been adopted into a Roman home and his honor has been restored. He threatens to take revenge.

Meanwhile, Balthasar and his daughter Iras arrive at the Sheik's tent. With Judah they discuss how the Christ, approaching the age of thirty, is ready to enter public ministry. Judah takes increasing interest in the beautiful Iras.


The palace across the river nearly opposite Simonides' place is said to have been completed by the famous Epiphanes, and was all such a habitation can be imagined; though he was a builder whose taste ran to the immense rather than the classical, now so called--an architectural imitator, in other words, of the Persians instead of the Greeks.

The wall enclosing the whole island to the waters edge, and built for the double purpose of bulwark against the river and defence against the mob, was said to have rendered the palace unfit for constant occupancy, insomuch that the legates abandoned it and moved to another residence erected for them on the western ridge of Mount Sulpius, under the Temple of Jupiter. Persons were not wanting, however, who flatly denied the bill against the ancient abode. They said, with shrewdness at least, that the real object of the removal of the legates was not a more healthful locality, but the assurance afforded them by the huge barracks, named, according to the prevalent style, citadel, situated just over the way on the eastern ridge of the mount. And the opinion had plausible showing. Among other pertinent things, it was remarked that the palace was kept in perpetual readiness for use; and when a consul, general of the army, king, or visiting potentate of any kind arrived at Antioch, quarters were at once assigned him on
the island.

As we have to do with but one apartment in the old pile, the residue of it is left to the reader's fancy; and as pleases him, he may go through its gardens, baths, halls, and labyrinth of rooms to the pavilions on the roof, all furnished as became a house of fame in a city which was more nearly Milton's "gorgeous East" than
any other in the world.

At this age the apartment alluded to would be termed a saloon. It was quite spacious, floored with polished marble slabs, and lighted in the day by skylights in which colored mica served as glass.

The walls were broken by Atlantes, no two of which were alike, but all supporting a cornice wrought with arabesques exceedingly intricate in form, and more elegant on account of superadditions of color--blue, green, Tyrian purple, and gold. Around the room ran a continuous divan of Indian silks and wool of Cashmere.

The furniture consisted of tables and stools of Egyptian patterns grotesquely carved. We have left Simonides in his chair perfecting his scheme in aid of the miraculous king, whose coming he has decided is so close at hand. Esther is asleep; and now, having crossed the river by the bridge, and made way through the lion-guarded gate and a number of Babylonian halls and courts, let us enter
the gilded saloon.

There are five chandeliers hanging by sliding bronze chains from the ceiling--one in each corner, and in the centre one--enormous pyramids of lighted lamps, illuminating even the demoniac faces of the Atlantes and the complex tracery of the cornice. About the tables, seated or standing, or moving restlessly from one to another, there are probably a hundred persons, whom we must study at least for a moment.

They are all young, some of them little more than boys. That they are Italians and mostly Romans is past doubt. They all speak Latin in purity, while each one appears in the in-door dress of the great capital on the Tiber; that is, in tunics short of sleeve and skirt, a style of vesture well adapted to the climate of Antioch, and especially comfortable in the too close atmosphere of the saloon. On the divan here and there togas and lacernae lie where they have been carelessly tossed, some of them significantly bordered with purple. On the divan also lie sleepers stretched at ease; whether they were overcome by the heat and fatigue of the sultry day or by Bacchus we will not pause to inquire.

The hum of voices is loud and incessant. Sometimes there is an explosion of laughter, sometimes a burst of rage or exultation; but over all prevails a sharp, prolonged rattle, at first somewhat confusing to the non-familiar. If we approach the tables, however, the mystery solves itself. The company is at the favorite games, draughts and dice, singly or together, and the rattle is merely of the tesserae, or ivory cubes, loudly shaken, and the moving of the hostes on the checkered boards.

Who are the company?

"Good Flavius," said a player, holding his piece in suspended movement, "thou seest yon lacerna; that one in front of us on the divan. It is fresh from the shop, and hath a shoulder-buckle of gold broad as a palm."

"Well," said Flavius, intent upon his game, "I have seen such before; wherefore thine may not be old, yet, by the girdle of Venus, it is not new! What of it?"

"Nothing. Only I would give it to find a man who knows everything."

"Ha, ha! For something cheaper, I will find thee here several with purple who will take thy offer. But play."


"So, by all the Jupiters! Now, what sayest thou? Again?"

"Be it so."

"And the wager?"

"A sestertium."

Then each drew his tablets and stilus and made a memorandum; and, while they were resetting the pieces, Flavius returned to his friend's remark.

"A man who knows everything! Hercle! the oracles would die. What wouldst thou with such a monster?"

"Answer to one question, my Flavius; then, perpol! I would cut his throat."

"And the question?"

"I would have him tell me the hour-- Hour, said I?--nay, the minute--Maxentius will arrive to-morrow."

"Good play, good play! I have you! And why the minute?"

"Hast thou ever stood uncovered in the Syrian sun on the quay at which he will land? The fires of the Vesta are not so hot; and, by the Stator of our father Romulus, I would die, if die I must, in Rome. Avernus is here; there, in the square before the Forum,I could stand, and, with my hand raised thus, touch the floor of
the gods. Ha, by Venus, my Flavius, thou didst beguile me! I have lost. O Fortune!"


"I must have back my sestertium."

"Be it so."

And they played again and again; and when day, stealing through the skylights, began to dim the lamps, it found the two in the same places at the same table, still at the game. Like most of the company, they were military attaches of the consul, awaiting his arrival and amusing themselves meantime.

to be continued

The Power of Positive Thinking

by Norman Vincent Peale

Chapter 13 CONTINUED

I learned this law in a very interesting manner. Some years ago a group of us consisting of Lowell Thomas, Captain Eddie Rickenbacker, Branch Rickey, Raymond Thornburg, and others established an inspirational self-help magazine called Guideposts. 

This magazine has a double function: first, by relating stories of people who through their faith have overcome difficulties, it teaches techniques of victorious living, victory over fear, over circumstances, over obstacles, over resentment. It teaches faith over all manner of negativism.

Second, as a non-profit, non-sectarian, inter-faith publication it teaches the great fact that God is in the stream of history and that this nation was founded on belief in God and His laws.

The magazine reminds its readers that America is the first great nation in history to be established on a definitely religious premise and that unless we keep it so our freedoms will deteriorate.

Mr. Raymond Thornburg as publisher and I as editor in starting the magazine had no financial backing to underwrite it. It was begun on faith. In fact, its first offices were in rooms above a grocery store in the little village of Pawling,
New York. There was a borrowed typewriter, a few rickety chairs, and that was all; all except a great idea and great faith. Slowly a subscription list of 25,000 developed. The future seemed promising. Suddenly one night fire broke out,
and within an hour the publishing house was destroyed and with it the total list of subscribers. Foolishly no duplicate list had been made.

Lowell Thomas, loyal and efficient patron of Guideposts from the very start, mentioned this sad circumstance on his radio broadcast and as a result we soon had 30,000 subscribers, practically all the old ones and many new ones.

The subscription list rose to approximately 40,000, but costs increased even more rapidly. The magazine, which has always been sold for less than cost in order widely to disseminate the message, was more expensive than anticipated and we were faced with difficult financial problems. In fact, at one time it seemed almost impossible to keep it going.

At this juncture we called a meeting, and I'm sure you never attended a more pessimistic, negative, discouraging meeting. It dripped with pessimism. Where were we going to get the money to pay our bills? We figured out ways of robbing
Peter to pay Paul. Complete discouragement filled our minds.

A woman had been invited to this meeting whom we all regarded most highly. But one reason she was included in this meeting was because, on a previous occasion, she had contributed $2,000 to help inaugurate Guideposts magazine.
It was hoped that lightning might strike twice in the same place. But this time she gave us something of more value than money.

As this dismal meeting progressed she remained silent for a long time, but finally said, "I suppose you gentlemen would like me to make another financial contribution. I might as well put you out of your misery. I am not going to give you another cent."

This did not put us out of our misery. On the contrary, it put us deeper into our misery. "But," she continued, "I will give you something far more valuable than money."

This astonished us, for we could not possibly imagine anything of more value than money in the circumstances. "I am going to give you an idea," she continued, "a creative idea."

"Well," we thought to ourselves unenthusiastically, "how can we pay our bills with an idea?"

Ah, but an idea is just what will help you pay bills. Every achievement in this world was first projected as a creative idea. First the idea, then faith in it, then the means of implementing the idea. That is the way success proceeds.

"Now," she said, "here is the idea. What is your present trouble? It is that you lack everything. You lack money. You lack subscribers. You lack equipment. You lack ideas. You lack courage. Why do you lack all these requirements?

Simply because you are thinking lack. If you think lack you create the conditions that produce a state of lack. By this constant mental emphasis upon what you lack you have frustrated the creative forces that can give impetus to the development of Guideposts. You have been working hard from the standpoint of doing many things, but you have failed to do the one all-important thing that will lend power
to all your other efforts: you have not employed positive thinking. Instead, you have thought in terms of lack.

"To correct that situation—reverse the mental process and begin to think prosperity, achievement, success. This will require practice but it can be done quickly if you will demonstrate faith.

The process is to visualize; that is, to see Guideposts in terms of successful achievement. Create a mental picture of Guideposts as a great magazine, sweeping the country.

Visualize large numbers of subscribers, all eagerly reading this inspirational material and profiting thereby. Create a mental image of lives being changed by the philosophy of achievement which Guideposts teaches monthly in its issues.
"Do not hold mental pictures of difficulties and failures, but lift your mind above them and visualize powers and achievements. When you elevate your thoughts into the area of visualized attainment you look down on your problems rather than from below up at them and thus you get a much more encouraging view of them. Always come up over your problems. Never approach a problem below.
"Now let me continue further," she said. "How many subscribers do you need at the moment to keep going?"

We thought quickly and said, "100,000." We had 40,000. "All right," she said confidently, "that is not hard. That is easy. Visualize 100,000 people being creatively helped by this magazine and you will have them. In fact, the minute
you can see them in your mind, you will have them."

She turned to me and said, "Norman, can you see 100,000 subscribers at this minute? Look out there, look ahead of you. In your mind's eye can you see them?"
I wasn't convinced as yet, and I said rather doubtfully, "Well, maybe so, but they seem pretty dim to me."

She was a little disappointed in me, I thought, as she asked, "Can't you imaginatively visualize 100,000 subscribers?"

I guess my imagination wasn't working very well because all I could see was the insufficient but actual 40,000.

Then she turned to my old friend Raymond Thornburg who has been blessed with a gloriously victorious personality, and she said, calling him by his nickname, "Pinky, can you visualize 100,000 subscribers?"

I rather doubted that Pinky would see them. He is a rubber manufacturer who gives his time freely from his own  business to help advance this inspirational, non-profit magazine, and you would not ordinarily think that a rubber manufacturer would respond to this type of thinking. But he has the faculty of creative imagination. I noticed by the fascinated look on his face that she had him. He was gazing straight ahead with rather a look of wonder when she asked,
"Do you see the 100,000 subscribers?"

"Yes," he cried with eagerness, "yes, I do see them."

Electrified, I demanded, "Where? Point them out to me."

Then I, too, began to visualize them. "Now," continued our friend, "let us bow our heads and together thank God for giving us 100,000 subscribers."

Frankly I thought that was pushing the Lord rather hard, but it was justified by a verse in the Scriptures where it says, "And all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive them." (Matthew 21:22) That means when
you pray for something, at the same time visualize what you pray for. Believe that if it is God's will and is worthwhile, not selfishly sought after, but for human good, that it is at that moment given you. 
If you have difficulty in following this reasoning, let me tell you that from that moment until the present writing Guideposts never lacked for anything. It has found wonderful friends and has had fine support. It has been able always to meet its bills, purchase needed equipment, finance itself, and as I write these words Guideposts is nearing the half million mark and more subscriptions are coming in
regularly, sometimes as many as three or four thousand per day.

I recite this instance not for the purpose of advertising Guideposts, although I strongly recommend this magazine to all my readers, and if you would like to be a subscriber, write to Guideposts, Pawling, New York, for information. But I
tell the story because I was awed by this experience, realizing that I had stumbled upon a law, a tremendous law of personal victory. I decided to apply it thereafter to my own problems and wherever I have done so can report a marvelous result. Wherever I have failed to do so, I have missed great results.

to be continued