The early Salvation Army officer, Samuel Brengle, was preaching on a
Boston street corner, when a young hoodlum attacked him by throwing a brick.The blow to Brengle’s head caused severe injury, which threatened his very life.
Laid up for eighteen months, Brengle was unable to perform his duties.Housebound, he could not accomplish important tasks, and felt totally useless.
But Brengle lived by this principle:when life throws you lemons, make lemonade!
Attempting to redeem time during his housebound recuperation, he began to write a few articles to encourage people in their faith.To his surprise, the articles were published.
This launched a splendid writing career, which led to the publication of eight books with over a million copies sold.In fact, today, Samuel Brengle is known far more as the writer of books than a preacher of sermons.
Looking back on that painful ordeal, Brengle realized there was an unexpected blessing in the brick that had been hurled at him, stating, “No brick, no book!”
Similarly, John Bunyan was imprisoned for nearly twelve years in the Bedford jail because of his unbending religious convictions.This confinement caused tremendous strain and heartache for him and his family, but in those years of captivity, he wrote Pilgrim’s Progress, widely known as one of the most significant works of English literature.
Leonard Ravenhill was a pretty good preacher, until he was seriously injured after leaping from a burning building.The recovery was a long painful process.
Like Brengle and Bunyan, Ravenhill wrote in his confinement, and became a powerful voice of conscience for church leaders around the world.
No brick, no book.
No jail, no book.
No fire, no book.
Sometimes, the greatest blessing comes in the most painful disguise.