Synopsis: Lift Your Eyes by Clyde E. Nichols is a daily devotional that contains a scripture reading and short story for each day of the year.
Nichols, a pastor in Temple, Texas, tells us in his forward that he collected favorite scriptures from his congregants and assigned a day for each one accompanied by an anecdote to meditate on and hopefully increase the reader's understanding and appreciation for the scripture and the God they serve.
Some of the stories are personal reflections from Pastor Nichol's own life while others are stories, both humorous and serious he probably collected over the years. Many of the stories are taken from history and are about famous but also little known Christians of the past.
For instance, I had heard of the story about Corrie Ten Boom preaching forgiveness than being confronted with the necessity of practicing what she preached when a former guard from the concentration camp where she had been a prisoner came up and extended his hand to her in friendship.
Others I didn't know such as George Matheson, a Scottish minister who became blind at the age of seventeen but still went on to become an accomplished minister, giving all his sermons by memory.
Some will tug your heart strings like the elderly lady taking a taxi to hospice (February 19th) while others will inspire like the man who finally got up enough gumption to read his Bible in front of his cursing drinking co-workers (March 9)
All the stories are thought-provoking and designed, along with the Scripture, to increase the reader's intimacy with and focus on our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
There's a fascinating story about a man named Butch O Hare . This story is too good not to repeat in its entirety.
The Story Of Two Men
I want to tell you a couple of stories about two men. Butch O’Hare was from Chicago. He was a navy pilot during World War II. In the Pacific his squadron had taken off from its carrier on a mission.
A few minutes away from the carrier, he realized his plane had not been serviced. His fuel was too low to make it to the target. Radioing his squadron leader, he turned back.
On his way, he spotted fifty Japanese bombers flying straight for the American fleet. Nobody knew they were coming. The American fleet would be devastated. All the planes had been sent off.
Butch O’Hare remembered his father who had chosen God and honor first over all.
He whispered a quick prayer and then dived toward the fifty Japanese bombers. When his machine guns ran out of ammunition, he began suicide dives disabling as many planes as he could.
He disorganized the entire Japanese flight, until the other American planes he had radioed turned and came back to help.
Later, he learned that he had shot down five Japanese bombers and heavily damaged any number of others. He was the first navy aviator ever to receive the Congressional Medal of Honor.
When you fly into Chicago today, you land at O’Hare Airport, named after the young man who that day saved thousands and thousands of American sailors.
Easy Eddie was also from Chicago. He was part of Al Capone’s mob. The lawyer who kept the mob out of jail, he never got his hands dirty.
Everybody thought well of Easy Eddie. Even after Al Capone went to jail, the mob kept going because Easy Eddie kept it going.
One night a friend gave him a Bible. Putting his feet up, he read.
Before long he realized that he was going to hell and that everything he was living for was the work of Satan.
That night he gave his heart to Christ. The next morning he walked into the FBI headquarters and turned state’s evidence. It brought down the mob.
Within a year, Easy Eddie was gunned down in the streets.
What do these two stories have in common? Easy Eddie’s last name was O’Hare. He was Butch O’Hare’s father.
That's just a sampling. If you like that story then you need to get this book.
My opinion: This is a wonderful addition to any believer's Bible study library. It's a great resource for daily meditation and quiet time.
Thanks to Janette Fuller for providing me with a free copy of Lift Up Your Eyes. For more information you can visit her site at http://janettefuller.blogspot.com/2011/04/once-in-lifetime.html