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Psalm 73

Greatest Calamaty

“To prosper in sin is the greatest calamity that can befall a man this side of hell.”

John Trapp, 17th Century, quoted in Prodigals and Those Who Love Them, Ruth Bell Graham, 1991, Focus on the Family Publishing, p. 67


  • The Upside of Down, Joe Stowell, Moody, 1991, pp.186ff

Dead Duck

A wealthy man went duck hunting with one of his employees named Sam, so the story goes. They took a horse and carriage, and on the a rim came off one of the wheels. As Sam hammered it back on, he accidentally hit his finger and let go with some bad words. He quickly fell to his knees, asking God’s forgiveness, “Lord, it’s so difficult at times to live the Christian life,” he prayed.

Sam” said his boss, “I know you’re a Christian. But tell me, why do you struggle so? I’m an atheist, and I don’t have problems like that.”

Sam was silent. Just then two ducks flew overhead. The boss raised his gun and two shots rang out. “Leave the dead one and go after that wounded bird,” he shouted. Sam pointed at the duck that was fluttering desperately to escape and said, “I’ve got an answer for you now, Boss. You implied that my Christianity isn’t any good because I have to struggle so. Well, I’m the wounded duck, and I struggle to get away from the devil. But Boss, you’re the dead duck!”

Source unknown

Settling Accounts

The story is told of a farmer in a Midwestern state who had a strong disdain for “religious” things. As he plowed his field on Sunday morning, he would shake his fist at the church people who passed by on their way to worship. October came and the farmer had his finest crop ever—the best in the entire county. When the harvest was complete, he placed an advertisement in the local paper which belittled the Christians for their faith in God.

Near the end of his diatribe he wrote, “Faith in God must not mean much if someone like me can prosper.” The response from the Christians in the community was quiet and polite. In the next edition of the town paper, a small ad appeared. It read simply, “God doesn’t always settle His accounts in October.”

William E. Brown in Making Sense of Your Faith


  • Joseph Stowell, Through The Fire, Victor Books, 1988, pp. 133ff
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