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BABBLE I have received memos so swollen with managerial babble that they struck me as the literary equivalent of assault with a deadly weapon. Peter Baida, Management Babble, American Heritage, April 1985. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- I like nonsense -- it wakes up the brain cells. Fantasy is a necessary ingredient in living. It\'s a way of looking at life through the wrong end of a telescope that enables you to laugh at all of life\'s realities. Theodore S. Geisel, Also known as Dr. Seuss -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- There is nothing that can be said by mathematical symbols and relations which cannot also be said by words. The converse, however, is false. Much that can be and is said by words cannot successfully be put into equations, because it is nonsense. C. Truesdell -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- I am returning this otherwise good typing paper to you. Someone has printed gibberish all over it and put your name at the top. Source Unknown --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
BABY A baby is God\'s opinion that the world should go on. Carl Sandburg in Remembrance Rock. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Babies are always more trouble than you thought--and more wonderful. Charles Osgood, CBS Morning News. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
BACH, J. S. J.S. Bach\'s first biographer, Forkel, tells that young Johann Sebastian discovered that his brother had in his music cabinet a special book of compositions by some of the more established composers of that day, such as Pachelbel, Froberger, Bohm, and Buxtehude. He wanted to borrow the book, but for some reason his brother refused. Perhaps brother Johann Christoph was reserving those pieces for his own study or performances and didn\'t want the talented youngster in his home to perfect the works first. Johann Sebastian clearly coveted his brother\'s book, however, and in the middle of the night, when everyone else in the house was asleep, he crept down to sneak the anthology from the cabinet. He took it to his room and began to copy it by moonlight! It took him six months. Johann Christoph found out about it...and promptly impounded the copied volume. Johann Sebastian did not get the book back until his brother died almost a quarter-century later. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
BACHELOR A single man has not nearly the value he would have in a state of union. He is an incomplete animal. He resembles the odd half of a pair of scissors. B. Franklin.
BACKSLIDE During WWI one of my predecessors at Tenth Presbyterian Church, Donald Grey Barnhouse, led the son of a prominent American family to the Lord. He was in the service, but he showed the reality of his conversion by immediately professing Christ before the soldiers of his military company. The war ended. The day came when he was to return to his pre-war life in the wealthy suburb of a large American city. He talked to Barnhouse about life with his family and expressed fear that he might soon slip back into his old habits. He was afraid that love for parents, brothers, sisters, and friends might turn him from following after Jesus Christ. Barnhouse told him that if he was careful to make public confession of his faith in Christ, he would not have to worry. He would not have to give improper friends up. The would give him up. As a result of this conversation the young man agreed to tell the first ten people of his old set whom he encountered that he had become a Christian. The soldier went home. Almost immediately--in fact, while he was still on the platform of the suburban station at the end of his return trip--he met a girl whom he had known socially. She was delighted to see him and asked how he was doing. He told her, \"The greatest thing that could possibly happen to me has happened.\" \"You\'re engaged to be married,\" she exclaimed. \"No,\" he told her. \"It\'s even better than that. I\'ve taken the Lord Jesus Christ as my Savior.\" The girls\' expression froze. She mumbled a few polite words and went on her way. A short time later the new Christian met a young man whom he had known before going into the service. \"It\'s good to see you back,\" he declared. \"We\'ll have some great parties now that you\'ve returned.\" \"I\'ve just become a Christian,\" the soldier said. He was thinking, That\'s two! Again it was a case of a frozen smile and a quick change of conversation. After this the same circumstances were repeated with a young couple and with two more old friends. By this time word had got around, and soon some of his friends stopped seeing him. He had become peculiar, religious, and -- who knows! -- they may even have called him crazy! What had he done? Nothing but confess Christ. The same confession that had aligned him with Christ had separated him from those who did not want Jesus Christ as Savior and who, in fact, did not even want to hear about Him. J.M. Boice, Christ\'s Call To Discipleship, Moody, 1986, p. 122-23. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
BAD LUCK Johnson\'s first law of auto repair: Any tool dropped while repairing an automobile will roll under the car to the vehicle\'s exact geographic center. Traditional. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Medieval theologians argued that since a ladder leaning against a wall forms a triangle and a triangle is a symbolic reminder of the Holy Trinity, anyone who carelessly blunders through this mystical space is risking divine wrath! Even when that argument lost itself in history\'s muddle, condemned Englishmen about to be hanged at Tyburn or some other notable place of execution were required to walk under the ladder that stood against the gallows for convenience of the executioner. In those circumstances, you could say the man was certainly in for a spell of very bad luck. Source Unknown. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- For centuries educated and literate persons considered it important to start the day by getting out of bed on the right side. The meaning of the verbal formula, which is now more familiar than the ceremony that produced it, is literal. To get out of bed on the left side was to invite trouble, for the left side (Latin sinister) provided easy access for evil spirits. Source Unknown. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
BALANCE Once the Devil was walking along with one of his cohorts. They saw a man ahead of them pick up something shiny. \"What did he find?\" asked the cohort. \"A piece of the truth,\" the Devil replied. \"Doesn\'t it bother you that he found a piece of the truth?\" asked the cohort. \"No,\" said the Devil, \"I will see to it that he makes a religion out of it.\" Klyne Snodgrass, Between Two Truths - Living with Biblical Tensions, 1990, Zondervan Publishing House, p. 35. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Christianity got over the difficulty of combining furious opposites, by keeping them both, and keeping them both furious. G.K. Chesterton. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
BALDNESS One member of the bridge club was wearing a gold locket on a chain around her neck. \"That\'s lovely,\" another player said. \"Do you keep a memento in it?\" \"A lock of my husband\'s hair,\" replied the first woman. \"Oh. But your husband is still alive.\" \"Yes,\" said the first, \"but his hair is gone.\" Ohio Motorist. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- A few yarns: Don\'t regard it as losing hair. Think of it as gaining face. The good man always comes out on top. At least it\'s neat. God only made so many perfect heads, the rest he covered with hair. Traditional. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Better a bald head than none at all. Austin O\'Malley. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
BANQUET In 1971, the Persian Empire celebrated its 2,500th birthday as Shah Reza Pahlavi of Iran gave a four-day celebration costing $100 million. The focal point of the event was a huge banquet, the banquet hall being a gigantic silk tent lighted with $840,000 worth of colored lights! The guest list matched the occasion: the Shah invited more than 600 dignitaries from 69 nations. Today in the Word, March 1989, p. 31.
BAPTISM Over the centuries Christians have debated what baptism accomplishes, to whom it should be administered, and how much water should be used. Christian Theology in Plain Language, p. 158. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- The story is told about the baptism of King Aengus by St. Patrick in the middle of the fifth century. Sometime during the rite, St. Patrick leaned on his sharp-pointed staff and inadvertently stabbed the king\'s foot. After the baptism was over, St. Patrick looked down at all the blood, realized what he had done, and begged the king\'s forgiveness. Why did you suffer this pain in silence, the Saint wanted to know. The king replied, \"I thought it was part of the ritual.\" Source Unknown. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
BAPTISM, IN THE HOLY SPIRIT As I shut the door of the office after me, it seemed as if I met the Lord Jesus Christ face to face. It seemed to me that I saw Him as I would see any other man. He said nothing, but looked at me in such a manner as to break me right down at His feet. I fell down at His feet, wept aloud like a child, and made such confessions as I could with my choked utterance. It seemed to me that I bathed His feet in tears. I must have continued in this state for a good while. I returned to the front office, but as I turned and was about to take a seat by the fire, I received a mighty baptism of the Holy Ghost. Without any recollection that I had ever heard the subject mentioned by any person in the world, the Holy Spirit descended upon me in a manner that seemed to come in waves of liquid love; it seemed like the very breath of God. I wept aloud with joy and love. Charles Finney.
BARGAIN Our mammas did not hesitate to bargain. Questioning a price was standard procedure. \"How much are these cucumbers?\" \"Two for five.\" The mamma pushed one aside. \"And how much is this one?\" \"Three cents.\" \"Okay. I\'ll take the other one.\" Sam Levenson. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Never buy a portable TV set on the sidewalk from a man who\'s
BASEBALL The baseball season is upon us and an office manager we know passes along this explanation of the game, given to her by her grandson: You have two sides, one out in the field and one in. Each man that\'s on the side that\'s in goes out and when he\'s out he comes in and the next man goes in until he\'s out. When three men are out, the side that\'s out come in and the side that\'s been in goes out and tries to get those coming in out. When both sides have been in and out nine times, including the not outs, that\'s the end of the game. Bits & Pieces, April 30, 1992. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Dick Wade, a Kansas City sportswriter, once decided to find out exactly how much \"action\" occurred in a baseball game. So, on June 21, 1956, he took a stopwatch to a game between the Kansas City Athletics and Washington Senators and counted the time it took a ball to leave the pitcher\'s hand until it arrived at home plate; then on all hit balls, he let the clock run until the batter was either out or safe. The total \"action\" during the two-hour, 28-minute game was 8.5 minutes. Kansas City won, 15-6. Tom Peters in Philadelphia Inquirer. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
BASHFUL Hear about the man who was so bashful that he couldn\'t even lead in silent prayer?
BASICS Race car driver Bill Vukovich won the famed Indianapolis 500 race in 1953 and 1954, a record of success few other drivers had matched. Asked the secret of his success in Indianapolis, Vukovich replied, \"There\'s no secret. You just press the accelerator to the floor and steer left.\" Today in the Word, February 17, 1993.
BASKETBALL Pages in 1891 rule book: 2. In current rule book: 114 U.S. News and World Report, November 25, 1991, p. 9. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Les Henson, a six-foot, six-inch senior forward on the Virginia Tech basketball team, will never forget a game against Florida State University in Tallahassee last year (1986). With two seconds to go and the score tied at 77 to 77, Henson grabbed a rebound off the Florida State backboard a foot from the baseline and threw the ball overhand toward his own basket. \"It was eerie--you couldn\'t hear a thing in the arena,\" Henson recalled later. \"Then it just swished through the hoop\" --from 89 feet, 3 inches away, making it the longest field goal in college basketball history. And Henson, who shoots with his left hand, had done it with a right-handed throw. New York Times, quoted in Reader\'s Digest, March 1987. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
BEAUTY My wife was grading a science test at home that she had given to her elementary-school class and was reading some of the results to me. The subject was \"The Human Body,\" and the first question was: \"Name one of the major functions of the skin.\" One child wrote: \"To keep people who look at you from throwing up.\" Contributed by Sam Jarrett, Reader\'s Digest. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- The renowned Quaker scholar Rufus Jones was speaking of the importance of having a radiant countenance. After his address, a woman \"with an almost unbelievably plain face\" came up and asked him what he would do if he had a face like hers. He replied, \"While I have troubles of my own of that kind, I\'ve discovered that if you light it up from within, any old face you have is good enough.\" Our Daily Bread, December 7, 1992. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Charles William Eliot (1834-1926), former president of Harvard University, had a birthmark on his face that bothered him greatly. As a young man, he was told that surgeons could do nothing to remove it. Someone described that moment as \"the dark hour of his soul.\" Eliot\'s mother gave him this helpful advice: \"My son, it is not possible for you to get rid of that hardship...But it is possible for you, with God\'s help, to grow a mind and soul so big that people will forget to look at your face.\" Our Daily Bread, June 15, 1992. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- An ad appeared in a newspaper that read: \"Farmer wants to marry woman, 35, with tractor. Send picture of tractor.\" Source Unknown. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- The Lord prefers common-looking people. That is the reason he made so many of them. A. Lincoln. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- It was absolutely amazing. I was in West Afraca--Timbuktu to be exact--and the missionaries were telling me that in that culture the larger the women were the more beautiful they were thought to be. In fact, a young missionary who had a small, trim wife said that the nationals had told him she was a bad reflection on him-- he obviously was not providing well enough for her. A proverb in that part of Africa says that if your wife is on a camel and the camel cannot stand up, your wife is truly beautiful. J. Stowell, Fan The Flame, Moody, 1986, p. 119. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
BEETHOVEN By the age of 5, Beethoven was playing the violin under the tutelage of his father--also an accomplished musician. By the time he was 13, Beethoven was a concert organist. In his 20s he was already studying under the very watchful eyes of Haydn and Mozart. In fact, Mozart spoke prophetic words when he declared that Beethoven would give the world something worth listening to by the time his life ended. As Beethoven began to develop his skills, he became a prolific composer. During his lifetime, he wrote nine majestic symphonies and five concertos for piano, not to mention numerous pieces of chamber music. Ludwig van Beethoven also wrote sonatas and pieces for violin and piano. He has thrilled us with the masterful works of unique harmony that broke with the traditions of his times. The man was a genius. Beethoven was not, however, a stranger to difficulties. During his twenties, he began to lose his hearing. His fingers \"became thick,\" he said on one occasion. He couldn\'t feel the music as he once had. His hearing problem haunted him in the middle years of his life, but he kept it a well-guarded secret. When he reached his fifties, Beethoven was stone deaf. Three years later he made a tragic attempt to conduct an orchestra and failed miserably. Approximately five years later, he died during a fierce thunder storm. He was deaf, yet a magnificent musician. On one occasion, Beethoven was overheard shouting at the top of his voice as he slammed both fists on the keyboard, \"I will take life by the throat!\" C. Swindoll, Hand Me Another Brick, pp. 190-191. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
BEGINNING The tragedy of life is not that it ends so soon, but that we wait so long to begin it. Richard L. Evans, Bits & Pieces, March 4, 1993, p. 2. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Kim Linehan holds the world record in the Women\'s 1500-meter freestyle. According to her coach, Paul Bergen, the 18-year-old is the leading amateur woman distance swimmer in the world. Kim does endless exercises and swims 7 to 12 miles a day. The hardest part of her regimen? \"Getting in the water,\" she says. Texas Monthly, quoted in Reader\'s Digest, June 1981. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- The first electric light was so dim that a candle was needed to see its socket. One of the first steamboats took 32 hours to chug its way from New York to Albany, a distance of 150 miles. Wilbur and Orville Wright\'s first airplane flight lasted only 12 seconds. And the first automobiles traveled 2 to 4 miles per hour and broke down often. Carriages would pass them with their passengers shouting, \"Get a horse!\" Source Unknown. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- On a plaque marking Abraham Lincoln\'s birthplace near Hodgenville, Kentucky, is recorded this scrap of conversation: \"Any news down \'t the village, Ezry?\" \"Well, Squire McLain\'s gone t\' Washington t\' see Madison swore in, and ol\' Spellman tells me this Bonaparte fella has captured most o\' Spain. What\'s new out here, neighbor?\" \"Nuthin\' nuthin\' a\'tall, \'cept fer a new baby born t\' Tom Lincoln\'s. Nothin\' ever happens out here.\" Some events, whether birthdays in Hodgenville (or Bethlehem) or spiritual rebirth in a person\'s life, may not create much earthly splash, but those of lasting importance will eventually get the notice they deserve. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Over 2,000 years ago a young Greek artist named Timanthes studied under a respected tutor. After several years the teacher\'s efforts seemed to have paid off when Timanthes painted an exquisite work of art. Unfortunately, he became so enraptured with the painting that he spent days gazing at it. One morning when he arrived to admire his work, he was shocked to find it blotted out with paint. Angry, Timanthes ran to his teacher, who admitted he had destroyed the painting. \"I did it for your own good. That painting was retarding your progress. Start again and see if you can do better.\" Timanthes took his teacher\'s advice and produced Sacrifice of Iphigenia, which is regarded as one of the finest paintings of antiquity. Today in the Word, September 2, 1992. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
BEHAVIOR There\'s little difference in ethical behavior between the churched and the unchurched. There\'s as much pilferage and dishonesty among the churched as the unchurched. And I\'m afraid that applies pretty much across the board: Religion, per se, is not really life changing. People cite it as important, for instance, in overcoming depression--but it doesn\'t have primacy in determining behavior. George H. Gallup, \"Vital Signs,\" Leadership, Fall 1987, p. 17. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- In his book I Surrender, Patrick Morley writes that the church\'s integrity problem is in the misconception \"that we can add Christ to our lives, but not subtract sin. It is a change in belief without a change in behavior.\" He goes on to say, \"It is revival without reformation, without repentance.\" Quoted in John The Baptizer, Bible Study Guide by C. Swindoll, p. 16 --------------------------------------------------------------------------------