Sermon Illustrations

Sermon Illustrations > Giving & Stewardship > Paderewski

Our Daily Bread, April 10

Many years ago two young men were working their way through Stanford University. At one point their money was almost gone, so they decided to engage the great pianist Paderewski for a concert and use the profits for board and tuition. Paderewski's manager asked for a guarantee of $1,000. the students worked hard to promote the concert, but they came up $400 short. After the performance, they went to the musician, gave him all the money they had raised, and promised to pay the $400 as soon as they could. It appeared that their college days were over. "No, boys, that won't do," said the pianist. "Take out of this $1600 all your expenses, and keep for each of you 10 percent of the balance for your work. Let me have the rest."

Years passed. Paderewski became premier of Poland following World War I. Thousands of his countrymen were starving. Only one man could help&md;the head of the U. S. Food and Relief Bureau. Paderewski's appeal to him brought thousands of tons of food. Later he met the American statesman to thank him. "That's all right," replied Herbert Hoover. "Besides, you don't remember, but you helped me once when I was a student in college."

The principle of liberality set forth in Proverbs 11:25 finds its origin in God. He is overflowing in His goodness, lavish in His mercy, and abounding in His grace. How inconceivable that we His creatures, especially His redeemed children, could be greedy and selfish! Remember, liberality is part of God's way of taking care of us. - D.J.D.