>> 31 March 2010

A person was driving his ‘Model-T’ Ford car through a remote village in USA. He stopped it to take some refreshments from a wayside restaurant. Then he tried to start the car, but failed. He tried his best but could not identify the problem or solve it. As he remained worried and stranded in a strange place, another similar car came forward and stopped near his car. An elderly man alighted from the car and smiling softly, asked the person about his problem. Hearing that the car refused to start, the stranger told him, “Let me try. I have some experience in handling this model.” He examined the car, made some quick adjustments and started it. The car roared into life. The man thanked the helper and praised his skill. Then he asked his name. The stranger told him, “My name is Henry Ford. I am familiar with every part of this car as I was closely associated with every stage of its design, development and manufacture.” The man was surprised to find that the stranger was the great Henry Ford, who founded the Ford Motor Company in 1903.

Henry Ford (1863-1947), after innovative and extensive experiments had developed the Model T car in1908 as a simple, reliable and affordable car which was within the economic reach of the average American. By developing the concept of ‘assembly line’ in motor car manufacture, Ford could increase the efficiency of manufacture and decrease the cost of production. He lowered the price of the car and revolutionized the manufacture and use of cars in USA.

In the journey of life, we may encounter a variety of problems concerned with different facets of our life such as health, education, work, relations, family and finance. We often create unnecessary tension, anxiety and worry when we try to solve the problems by ourselves. Like the car- designer in the story, we have an expert creator, who knows everything about us and our life, our requirements, weaknesses and capabilities and so is able to solve any problem associated with our life. Let us have the humility to surrender ourselves before the omnipotent God. He is the loving Lord who has a definite plan for the welfare of each of us.

It is said that the shortest distance between a problem and its solution is the distance between our knees and the floor. The one who kneels to the Lord can face any problem with confidence. When prayers go up, blessings come down. Prayer should be the ‘steering wheel’ and not the ‘spare wheel’ in the vehicle of our life. God answers ‘KNEE-MAIL’ without fail.

The Lord has said, “By my great power and strength I created the world, mankind and all the animals that live on the earth {Jeremiah 27: 5}. David praises the creator, “Lord, you have made so many things! How wisely you made them all! The earth is filled with your creatures {Psalms 104:24}.

“The Lord says…I alone know the plans I have for you, plans to bring you prosperity and not disaster, plans to bring about the future you hope for” {Jeremiah 29: 11}.

“Happy are those who are humble; they will receive what God has promised!”{Matthew 5: 5}.

“Ask, and you will receive; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you” {Matthew 7:  Luke 11: 9}.

St. Paul advises, "Don't worry about anything, but in all your prayers ask God for what you need, always asking Him with a thankful heart" {Philippians 4:6}.

“Come near to God, and He will come near to you” {James 4:8}.

© By: Dr. Babu Philip, Professor, Cochin University of Science & Technology, Fine Arts Avenue, Kochi-682016, Kerala, India. For more moral stories, parables and anecdotes for students, catechists, teachers and preachers, kindly visit my web-site:



St. Martin of Tours (A.D. 316-397) was born as the son of a senior military officer of the Roman army. Attracted by the Christian doctrines, he went to the church as a candidate for baptism (catechumen) at the age of ten, even against the wishes of his pagan parents. At the age of fifteen he had to join the military.

On a bitterly cold winter day, he was passing through the city gates of Amiens. He saw a scantily dressed poor beggar, shivering in the snow storm. No one cared for him. Out of compassion, Martin cut his fine military cloak into two pieces with his sword. He gave one piece to the poor man who thankfully wrapped himself with it as a shawl. Martin covered himself with the other half.

That night, Martin had a dream. Jesus appeared before him, dressed in the half-cloak which he had gifted to the beggar. Jesus showed the mantle and said to the surrounding saints and angels “Martin, as yet only a catechumen, has covered me with this cloak.”

Martin remembered the words of Jesus: “I tell you, whenever you did this for one of the least important of these brothers of mine, you did this for me” {Matthew 25: 40}. He got baptized soon. He renounced the army and announced that he would be a soldier of Christ. He spent the rest of his life as a zealous missionary, preaching the word of God and suffering humiliation and punishment to uphold his faith. He lived as a monk and formed the first monastery in France. Later he was ordained as the Bishop of Tours. He led the fight against heresy. He is a patron saint of soldiers and of France. The piece of the cloak kept by him became a holy relic, known as ‘St. Martin’s cloak’.

The early Christians cared for everyone, especially the sick and needy and shared their assets equitably to benefit everyone {Acts 4: 32-37}.

“Suppose there are brothers or sisters who need clothes and don’t have enough to eat. What good is there in your saying to them, “God bless you! Keep warm and eat well!”- if you don’t give them the necessities of life? So it is with faith: if it is alone and includes no actions, then it is dead” {James 2: 15-17}.

St. John advises, “My children, our love should not be just words and talk; it must be true love, which shows itself in action” {1 John 3:18}. "If someone says he loves God, but hates his brother, he is a liar. For he cannot love God, whom he has not seen, if he does not love his brother, whom he has seen"{1 John 4: 20, 21}.

“Whenever you possibly can, do good to those who need it. Never tell your neighbour to wait until tomorrow if you can help him now” {Proverbs 3: 27}.

© By Dr. Babu Philip, Professor, Cochin University of Science & Technology, Fine Arts Avenue, Kochi-682016, Kerala, India. For more moral stories, parables and anecdotes for students, catechists, teachers and preachers, kindly visit our web-site:



>> 01 March 2010

A poor student was walking along a road, carrying a bundle of books, to his school. He was from a very poor family and his parents could not provide him even regular food. As he was already late, he was almost running. He was hungry and very weak. Suddenly he felt exhausted and fell down, scattering his books on the roadside. Seeing his fall, a lady rushed to the spot from her house. She helped the boy to get up, collected his books and carried him to her house. The boy was very weak and hungry, but he did not ask for food. He asked for a little water to drink. The lady sensed his state and offered him a glass of milk. The boy accepted it with gratitude and continued his journey to the school. The incident remained fresh in his mind.

Several years rolled by. The lady became old, sick and weak. She was admitted to the local hospital. As her condition became worse, she was shifted to a large medical institute in a distant city. The senior doctor, who was also the director of the institute, examined her. He diagnosed her disorder and performed an immediate surgery. She was carried to the best room in the hospital and provided expert medical care. The staff was always ready to offer all assistance and care. Within a month, she could regain her health fully. She was informed that she would be discharged the next day. She was worried about the bill as she was poor and could not afford to pay a large amount. She planned to sell her house to settle the bill. She enquired about the bill. The bill was presented to her. She examined it anxiously. On the top of the bill, there was a note signed by the director of the institute, “THE AMOUNT HAS BEEN PAID IN FULL BY A GLASS OF MILK.”

Slowly she recollected the incident when she gave a glass of milk to a poor, weak and hungry boy who fell down on the road near her residence. By this time, the director himself came to her room and she could recognize his face. He was the same boy whom she had helped with a glass of milk a long time ago. He had recognized her earlier and gratefully made elaborate arrangements for her treatment and paid the expenses from his own pocket, all for a glass of milk and tender care received in a crucial moment of his life, during his hard times, long before he became a distinguished doctor by his hard work and earnest efforts.

The road from Jerusalem to Jericho passes through our front. Let us behave like the Good Samaritan and be of help to any one in need.

“Give to the poor and you will never be in need” {Proverbs 28:27}.

“Be generous and share your food with the poor. You will be blessed for it” {Proverbs 22: 9}.

“Happy are those who are merciful to others; God will be merciful to them!” {Matthew 5: 7}.

“ I was hungry and you fed me, thirsty and you gave me a drink; I was a stranger and you received me in your homes, naked and you clothed me;I was sick and you took care of me, in prison and you visited me {Matthew 25:35, 36}

“”I tell you, whenever you did this for one of the least important of brothers of mine, you did it for me!” {Matthew 25: 40}.

© By: Dr. Babu Philip, Professor, Cochin University of Science & Technology, Fine Arts Avenue, Kochi-682016, Kerala, India.
For more moral stories, parables and anecdotes for students, catechists, teachers and preachers, kindly visit my web-site:

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