Antiquarian Anabaptist

Apologetics from an Anabaptist perspective

The power of turning the other cheekl

I had devotions at our school this morning. Part of what I told the chlidren and their teachers was the following story from the life of Albert Tait.

Albert Tait lived on a Saulteaux Indian Reservation in North-Western Ontario. The Saulteaux (pronounced Soto) are one of the most widespread First Nations groups in Canada, called Saulteaux because French fur traders first encountered them near Sault Ste. Marie. They are also known as Ojibway, and in South-Western Ontario they are known as Chippewa.

In his younger years Albert was a drinker, a gambler and a fighter. He was a real loser, he always lost at gambling, when he started a fight he always got beat up.  He never had any joy or peace, his life was miserable.

One day Albert became a Christian. That is not the story I want to tell here, but it is the foundation for the one I do want to tell.  After his conversion Albert was no longer a loser, he settled down, married and tried to help others. Eventually he became pastor of an evangelical church in his home village.

One evening his phone rang. It was a man in his village asking Albert to come over and help him. When Albert got to the house there was a group of people gathered, the man and wife were seated on the bed and the wife was crying. Albert asked them what the trouble was, but no one would answer.

Albert opened his Bible and began to read. The man stood up, grabbed the Bible, threw it on the floor and told Albert to leave. He grabbed Albert, started pushing him across the room and finally threw him into a big empty box.  Albert got out of the box, picked up his Bible and read some verses, then left.

A week later the same man called and asked Albert to come . He apologized for fighting with him and said he needed to talk. Albert went, not knowing quite what to expect this time.

The rest of this story is quoted from The Lonely Search, the story of Albert Tait:

“Albert, I’ve wandered away from the Lord,” he said. “I want to get right with God again.”

It was a joy to lead him back to the Lord. Maybe if I had gotten mad when he was trying to throw me out of the house, he might not have asked me to help him. You have to turn the other cheek, like the Bible says. This man follwed the Lord after that.

(Taken from the book, The Lonely Search © 1990 by Owen Salway, published by Indian Life Books, Winnipeg.)

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