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MAXWELL finished reading and dropped the paper.
must go and see Powers. This is the result of his promise."
He rose, and as he was going out, his wife said: "Do
you think, Henry, that Jesus would have done that?"
Maxwell paused a moment. Then he answered slowly, "Yes,
I think He would. At any rate, Powers has decided so and
each one of us who made the promise understands that he
is not deciding Jesus' conduct for any one else, only for
about his family? How will Mrs. Powers and Celia be likely
to take it?"
hard, I've no doubt. That will be Powers' cross in this
matter. They will not understand his motive."
Maxwell went out and walked over to the next block where
Superintendent Powers lived. To his relief, Powers himself
came to the door.
The two men shook hands silently. They instantly understood
each other without words. There had never before been such
a bond of union between the minister and his parishioner.
are you going to do?" Henry Maxwell asked after they
had talked over the facts in the case.
mean another position? I have no plans yet. I can go back
to my old work as a telegraph operator. My family will not
suffer, except in a social way."
Powers spoke calmly and sadly. Henry Maxwell did not need
to ask him how the wife and daughter felt. He knew well
enough that the superintendent had suffered deepest at that
is one matter I wish you would see to," said Powers
after awhile, "and that is, the work begun at the shops.
So far as I know, the company will not object to that going
on. It is one of the contradictions of the railroad world
that Y. M. C. A.'s and other Christian influences are encouraged
by the roads, while all the time the most un-Christian and
lawless acts may be committed in the official management
of the roads themselves. Of course it is well understood
that it pays a railroad to have in its employ men who are
temperate, honest and Christian. So I have no doubt the
master mechanic will have the same courtesy shown him in
the use of the room. But what I want you to do, Mr. Maxwell,
is to see that my plan is carried out. Will you? You understand
what it was in general. You made a very favorable impression
on the men. Go down there as often as you can. Get Milton
Wright interested to provide something for the furnishing
and expense of the coffee plant and reading tables. Will
you do it?"
replied Henry Maxwell. He stayed a little longer. Before
he went away, he and the superintendent had a prayer together,
and they parted with that silent hand grasp that seemed
to them like a new token of their Christian discipleship
The pastor of the First Church went home stirred deeply
by the events of the week. Gradually the truth was growing
upon him that the pledge to do as Jesus would was working
out a revolution in his parish and throughout the city.
Every day added to the serious results of obedience to that
pledge. Maxwell did not pretend to see the end. He was,
in fact, only now at the very beginning of events that were
destined to change the history of hundreds of families not
only in Raymond but throughout the entire country. As he
thought of Edward Norman and Rachel and Mr. Powers, and
of the results that had already come from their actions,
he could not help a feeling of intense interest in the probable
effect if all the persons in the First Church who had made
the pledge, faithfully kept it. Would they all keep it,
or would some of them turn back when the cross became too
He was asking this question the next morning as he sat in
his study when the President of the Endeavor Society of
his church called to see him.
suppose I ought not to trouble you with my case," said
young Morris coming at once to his errand, "but I thought,
Mr. Maxwell, that you might advise me a little."
glad you came. Go on, Fred." He had known the young
man ever since his first year in the pastorate, and loved
and honored him for his consistent, faithful service in
the fact is, I am out of a job. You know I've been doing
reporter work on the morning SENTINEL since I graduated
last year. Well, last Saturday Mr. Burr asked me to go down
the road Sunday morning and get the details of that train
robbery at the Junction, and write the thing up for the
extra edition that came out Monday morning, just to get
the start of the NEWS. I refused to go, and Burr gave me
my dismissal. He was in a bad temper, or I think perhaps
he would not have done it. He has always treated me well
before. Now, do you think Jesus would have done as I did?
I ask because the other fellows say I was a fool not to
do the work. I want to feel that a Christian acts from motives
that may seem strange to others sometimes, but not foolish.
What do you think?"
think you kept your promise, Fred. I cannot believe Jesus
would do newspaper reporting on Sunday as you were asked
to do it."
you, Mr. Maxwell. I felt a little troubled over it, but
the longer I think it over the better I feel."
Morris rose to go, and his pastor rose and laid a loving
hand on the young man's shoulder. "What are you going
to do, Fred?"
don't know yet. I have thought some of going to Chicago
or some large city ."
don't you try the NEWS?"
are all supplied. I have not thought of applying there."
Maxwell thought a moment. "Come down to the NEWS office
with me, and let us see Norman about it."
So a few minutes later Edward Norman received into his room
the minister and young Morris, and Maxwell briefly told
the cause of the errand.
can give you a place on the NEWS," said Norman with
his keen look softened by a smile that made it winsome.
"I want reporters who won't work Sundays. And what
is more, I am making plans for a special kind of reporting
which I believe you can develop because you are in sympathy
with what Jesus would do."
He assigned Morris a definite task, and Maxwell started
back to his study, feeling that kind of satisfaction (and
it is a very deep kind) which a man feels when he has been
even partly instrumental in finding an unemployed person
a remunerative position.
He had intended to go right to his study, but on his way
home he passed by one of Milton Wright's stores. He thought
he would simply step in and shake hands with his parishioner
and bid him God-speed in what he had heard he was doing
to put Christ into his business. But when he went into the
office, Wright insisted on detaining him to talk over some
of his new plans. Maxwell asked himself if this was the
Milton Wright he used to know, eminently practical, business-like,
according to the regular code of the business world, and
viewing every thing first and foremost from the standpoint
of, "Will it pay?"
is no use to disguise the fact, Mr. Maxwell, that I have
been compelled to revolutionize the entire method of my
business since I made that promise. I have been doing a
great many things during the last twenty years in this store
that I know Jesus would not do. But that is a small item
compared with the number of things I begin to believe Jesus
would do. My sins of commission have not been as many as
those of omission in business relations."
was the first change you made?" He felt as if his sermon
could wait for him in his study. As the interview with Milton
Wright continued, he was not so sure but that he had found
material for a sermon without going back to his study.
think the first change I had to make was in my thought of
my employees. I came down here Monday morning after that
Sunday and asked myself, 'What would Jesus do in His relation
to these clerks, bookkeepers, office-boys, draymen, salesmen?
Would He try to establish some sort of personal relation
to them different from that which I have sustained all these
years?' I soon answered this by saying, 'Yes.' Then came
the question of what that relation would be and what it
would lead me to do. I did not see how I could answer it
to my satisfaction without getting all my employees together
and having a talk with them. So I sent invitations to all
of them, and we had a meeting out there in the warehouse
Tuesday night. A good many things came out of that meeting.
I can't tell you all. I tried to talk with the men as I
imagined Jesus might. It was hard work, for I have not been
in the habit of it, and must have made some mistakes. But
I can hardly make you believe, Mr. Maxwell, the effect of
that meeting on some of the men. Before it closed I saw
more than a dozen of them with tears on their faces. I kept
asking, 'What would Jesus do?' and the more I asked it the
farther along it pushed me into the most intimate and loving
relations with the men who have worked for me all these
years. Every day something new is coming up and I am right
now in the midst of a reconstruction of the entire business
so far as its motive for being conducted is concerned. I
am so practically ignorant of all plans for co-operation
and its application to business that I am trying to get
information from every possible source. I have lately made
a special study of the life of Titus Salt, the great mill-owner
of Bradford, England, who afterward built that model town
on the banks of the Aire. There is a good deal in his plans
that will help me. But I have not yet reached definite conclusions
in regard to all the details. I am not enough used to Jesus'
methods. But see here."
Wright eagerly reached up into one of the pigeon holes of
his desk and took out a paper.
have sketched out what seems to me like a program such as
Jesus might go by in a business like mine. I want you to
tell me what you think of it:
JESUS WOULD PROBABLY DO IN
MILTON WRIGHT'S PLACE AS A
would engage in the, business first of all for the purpose
of glorifying God, and not for the primary purpose of
money that might be made he would never regard as his
own, but as trust funds to be used for the good of humanity.
relations with all the persons in his employ would be
the most loving and helpful. He could not help thinking
of all of them in the light of souls to be saved. This
thought would always be greater than his thought of
making money in the business.
would never do a single dishonest or questionable thing
or try in any remotest way to get the advantage of any
one else in the same business.
principle of unselfishness and helpfulness in the business
would direct all its details.
this principle he would shape the entire plan of his
relations to his employees, to the people who were his
customers and to the general business world with which
he was connected.
Henry Maxwell read this over slowly. It reminded him of
his own attempts the day before to put into a concrete form
his thought of Jesus' probable action. He was very thoughtful
as he looked up and met Wright's eager gaze.
you believe you can continue to make your business pay on
do. Intelligent unselfishness ought to be wiser than intelligent
selfishness, don't you think? If the men who work as employees
begin to feel a personal share in the profits of the business
and, more than that, a personal love for themselves on the
part of the firm, won't the result be more care, less waste,
more diligence, more faithfulness?"
I think so. A good many other business men don't, do they?
I mean as a general thing. How about your relations to the
selfish world that is not trying to make money on Christian
complicates my action, of course."
your plan contemplate what is coming to be known as co-operation?"
as far as I have gone, it does. As I told you, I am studying
out my details carefully. I am absolutely convinced that
Jesus in my place would be absolutely unselfish. He would
love all these men in His employ. He would consider the
main purpose of all the business to be a mutual helpfulness,
and would conduct it all so that God's kingdom would be
evidently the first object sought. On those general principles,
as I say, I am working. I must have time to complete the
When Maxwell finally left he was profoundly impressed with
the revolution that was being wrought already in the business.
As he passed out of the store he caught something of the
new spirit of the place. There was no mistaking the fact
that Milton Wright's new relations to his employees were
beginning even so soon, after less than two weeks, to transform
the entire business. This was apparent in the conduct and
faces of the clerks.
he keeps on he will be one of the most influential preachers
in Raymond," said Maxwell to himself when he reached
his study. The question rose as to his continuance in this
course when he began to lose money by it, as was possible.
He prayed that the Holy Spirit, who had shown Himself with
growing power in the company of First Church disciples,
might abide long with them all. And with that prayer on
his lips and in his heart he began the preparation of a
sermon in which he was going to present to his people on
Sunday the subject of the saloon in Raymond, as he now believed
Jesus would do. He had never preached against the saloon
in this way before. He knew that the things he should say
would lead to serious results. Nevertheless, he went on
with his work, and every sentence he wrote or shaped was
preceded with the question, "Would Jesus say that?"
Once in the course of his study, he went down on his knees.
No one except himself could know what that meant to him.
When had he done that in his preparation of sermons, before
the change that had come into his thought of discipleship?
As he viewed his ministry now, he did not dare preach without
praying long for wisdom. He no longer thought of his dramatic
delivery and its effect on his audience. The great question
with him now was, "What would Jesus do?"
Saturday night at the Rectangle witnessed some of the most
remarkable scenes that Mr. Gray and his wife had ever known.
The meetings had intensified with each night of Rachel's
singing. A stranger passing through the Rectangle in the
day-time might have heard a good deal about the meetings
in one way and another. It cannot be said that up to that
Saturday night there was any appreciable lack of oaths and
impurity and heavy drinking. The Rectangle would not have
acknowledged that it was growing any better or that even
the singing had softened its outward manner. It had too
much local pride in being "tough." But in spite
of itself there was a yielding to a power it had never measured
and did not know we enough to resist beforehand.
Gray had recovered his voice so that by Saturday he was
able to speak. The fact that he was obliged to use his voice
carefully made it necessary for the people to be very quiet
if they wanted to hear. Gradually they had come to understand
that this man was talking these many weeks and giving his
time and strength to give them a knowledge of a Savior,
all out of a perfectly unselfish love for them. Tonight
the great crowd was as quiet as Henry Maxwell's decorous
audience ever was. The fringe around the tent was deeper
and the saloons were practically empty. The Holy Spirit
had come at last, and Gray knew that one of the great prayers
of his life was going to be answered.
And Rachel her singing was the best, most wonderful, that
Virginia or Jasper Chase had ever known. They came together
again tonight, this time with Dr. West, who had spent all
his spare time that week in the Rectangle with some charity
cases. Virginia was at the organ, Jasper sat on a front
seat looking up at Rachel, and the Rectangle swayed as one
man towards the platform as she sang:
as I am, without one plea,
But that Thy blood was shed for me,
And that Thou bidst me come to Thee,
O Lamb of God, I come, I come."
Gray hardly said a word. He stretched out his hand with
a gesture of invitation. And down the two aisles of the
tent, broken, sinful creatures, men and women, stumbled
towards the platform. One woman out of the street was near
the organ. Virginia caught the look of her face, and for
the first time in the life of the rich girl the thought
of what Jesus was to the sinful woman came with a suddenness
and power that was like nothing but a new birth. Virginia
left the organ, went to her, looked into her face and caught
her hands in her own. The other girl trembled, then fell
on her knees sobbing, with her head down upon the back of
the rude bench in front of her, still clinging to Virginia.
And Virginia, after a moment's hesitation, kneeled down
by her and the two heads were bowed close together.
But when the people had crowded in a double row all about
the platform, most of them kneeling and crying, a man in
evening dress, different from the others, pushed through
the seats and came and kneeled down by the side of the drunken
man who had disturbed the meeting when Maxwell spoke. He
kneeled within a few feet of Rachel Winslow, who was still
singing softly. And as she turned for a moment and looked
in his direction, she was amazed to see the face of Rollin
Page! For a moment her voice faltered. Then she went on:
as I am, thou wilt receive,
Wilt welcome, pardon, cleanse, relieve,
Because Thy promise I believe,
O Lamb of God, I come, I come."
The voice was as the voice of divine longing, and the Rectangle
for the time being was swept into the harbor of redemptive