Inspiration from a Poor Scottish Farmer

From this month’s ASLA Newsletter. I love these short bios on people that shows you the unexpected connections and twists of life.


A poor Scottish farmer was out walking one day when he heard a plaintive cry for help coming from a nearby bog. He ran to assist and found a boy mired almost to the waist in the black muck. Extending his walking stick, the farmer pulled the boy out. The next day an elegantly dressed man came to the farmer’s small hut, offering a reward that the Scotsman refused. Just then the farmer’s young son came to the door. Seeing him the nobleman made the Scotsman an offer. “Let me take you son and give him a good education. If the lad is anthing like his father, he’ll grow into a man you can be proud of.” The Scotsman liked this and shook hands on the bargian. In time, the boy graduated from St. Mary’s Hospital Medical School, London. He later became Sir Alexander Fleming, the discoverer of penicillin. Years later the nobleman’s son was stricken with pneumonia, but was saved through the use of penicillin. The nobleman was Lord Randolph Churchill, and the son was Winston Churchill.

Remember the times in life when you have received an assist, boost or encouragement when you were in need and be grateful to others. Receiving is just as important as giving.

2 Responses to “Inspiration from a Poor Scottish Farmer”

  1. Ricky Aguas says:

    Hi Mike,
    Last night as I sat down to eat my dinner almost 10pm, my wife laid the Costco magazine down on the table and told me to read an article that included your story.

    It was inspiring. I was eating so late because I am stretched for time with my wife on bed rest and 5 kids and 2 dogs to care for the late hours are ‘my’ time for now. I’m writing from Southern Calif. Your story was interesting too because I saw the 2nd plane hit the WTC from my 15th floor window in Jersey City’s Newport Pavonia area. I heard the 1st plane hit and saw the 2nd. I worked for Insurance Services Office [ISO] then and still have my 7WTC badge, our corp office location till May prior to the attack. I know 2 people who died. We moved from NY [Rockland County] to here July 05. I also liked your story because although I’ve been in IT since 1993 [currently as a network engr], I don’t see this career any more than a means to an end which makes me very sad at times because I am passionate about things I enjoy. Although I went to college for 3 yrs, it was not for IT. I got into IT unintentionally. It was a good paying career for many years and I am blessed to be in this place with no degree when most of my peers have post grad degrees. As a Christian, I believe God is intimately involved with my life but I do believe there is something more that awaits me as far as my vocation goes. I don’t know how, what, and where but I feel the fire inside about that calling. Yes, I know your services could probably help me a great deal in helping me get clarity and instruction but with my current financial struggles it is not an option. I do believe God will light my way.

    Have you ever read Purpose Driven Life or Max Lucado’s Cure for the Common Life: Living in Your Sweet Spot. Awesome books for life coaching with a biblical view.

    Best Wishes to you for all you do,

    ps…I loved the article you posted about Chuchill and was going to save it so I could use it in a future sermon or something but I went to verify it and found it to be fictitios…fyi.

    Also liked the Charles Swindoll article.

    If ever in the city, try to swing by and attend one of the services at Time Square Church [Mark Hellinger Theater – 51st & Brdwy]. Very powerful messages.

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