21 Stories of Faith: Real People, Real Stories, Real Faith (A Life of Faith)

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But instead, Saenz called the stranger back and said, "I'll take care of the groceries, don't worry about it. Saenz contacted the daughter and bought her and her family enough groceries to get them through the end of the month , allowing Crutchfield to pay her mortgage. There are people who make a habit of this sort of thing, by the way. In Tennessee, a group of nine women have been running a secret charity for decades , just prowling around the city looking for strangers who'd had their power turned off, or who had just had a death in the family, whatever.

Then they'd sneak by their home in the wee hours of the morning and drop off envelopes of cash and a freshly baked cake. Over the decades they've dispensed nearly a million freaking dollars this way. The problem with dreaming of being Batman is that in real life, spending your family fortune on martial arts training and grappling hooks wouldn't really do anybody any good. Stopping street crime requires a justice system, not vigilantes, and in the real world, supervillains work in offices behind a moat full of lawyers.

There are ways to put your fortune to good use, however, without throwing a single bat-shaped shuriken at anyone. Washington Post "Of course, lil' Jimmy. I'll sucker punch the Joker twice for you. Take Lenny B. Robinson, the Baltimore businessman who has poured more money than some of us make in a year into a full Batman costume and other gear to go entertain sick kids.

He even bought a black Lamborghini and decked it out with bat symbols though we suspect he would have done that anyway. Via Washington Post "In fact, doing that was the only reason I got rich in the first place. Yes, he's rich and he can do this kind of thing, but it's still nice to see an example of a rich guy giving back when you hear so much about pro athletes and such blowing their fortunes on bullshit. Hey, speaking of which There was an assistant coach with the Los Angeles Clippers named Kim Hughes who was diagnosed with prostate cancer. The doctor who was approved under his insurance plan was going to require him to wait a few months to do the surgery, and Hughes didn't want to it would be risky, and that would require him to miss a good part of the upcoming season.

He found another doctor willing to do it sooner, but the insurance company let him know that they wouldn't be paying for it. Via LA Times "Kim, can you lick my phone? It was a good thing he didn't wait -- the cancer, it turns out, was already starting to spread. That is, until several Clippers players heard about the situation and told him not to worry about the bill.

They just paid it themselves. Though we guess all of this is small potatoes compared to Bill Gates. Billion, with a "b. But then, he and fellow billionaire Warren Buffett convinced 57 billionaires around the world to give away half of their money to people in need , and got them to sign a pledge saying so.

If you're sitting there thinking, "Yeah, but those guys can afford it! That's how they got rich, after all.

Right now, go to your nearest rich guy's mansion and ask for half his money. All you'll get is a bill two weeks later for the electricity the bodyguards used Tasering you. Most of us have a secret fantasy where we'll get the perfect excuse to act like a dick in a situation where nobody will blame us. That's why we love revenge movies, like the ones starring Liam Neeson where he or his family is wronged and he goes on a completely justified murderous rampage. It's not just that we fantasize that we'd respond like a destructive god of vengeance if wronged -- it's that we want to be wronged just so we have an excuse.

It's also why we love sitcom smartasses and Dr. House types, because we wish that we too had the perfect insult ready to whip out on the next person who deserves it. So here's one of those perfect smackdown situations that actually happened: Imagine you spend your entire life in the military as an officer who leads units in multiple wars.

In 40 years of service, you rise through the ranks to become a general, and the vice chief of staff of the U.

So one day you're at a fancy Washington dinner with the president of the United States and other bigwigs. As you pass one table, one of the liberal women Obama has working in his administration glances back at you and tells you to go get her a glass of wine. Via Wikipedia "And don't drop any of those stupid patches in it.

The man was General Peter Chiarelli , the woman was Obama adviser Valerie Jarrett, and the situation was an all-time setup for a smackdown of epic proportions. What did Chiarelli do? Well, he immediately figured out what had happened -- the waiter's uniforms were identical to what the officers were wearing, minus a couple of dozen medals. She just saw him out of the corner of her eye and mistook him for a server.

Immediately after seeing her mistake, she probably assumed that she had just ruined her career.

A Miracle of the Lord: A True Story of Faith

But Chiarelli? He went and got her some wine, just like she asked. Then they all laughed about it. Getty Silently quieting the urge to send her to Guantanamo. There is a similar famous story where a woman at a Utah airport saw a big black man at the curb and assumed he was an airport employee. She did not find this out, in fact, until after he carried out her bags and had to explain why he couldn't accept her tip.

But probably my favorite example of this was a Major League baseball pitcher named Armando Galarraga. The guy has had a mediocre career, spending most of it in the minor leagues. But in he got called up out of the minors by the Detroit Tigers and pitched one of the greatest games in the history of the sport. Getty That's him, straining under the weight of the standard pound American baseball. He reached the final out in the ninth inning, having pitched a perfect game -- he allowed no hits and no walks. Understand, this is something that had only happened 19 times in the last century.

So before you say, "Ah, it's just a game, who cares? That perfect game would follow him for the rest of his life. The vast majority of even the greatest Hall of Fame pitchers play their entire careers without ever doing it, and here this year-old nobody was about to pull it off, in miracle fashion. He just had to get one more out. He made the pitch. The batter hit a little ground ball. The fielder threw it to first base, the runner was out by a mile. Via Huffington Post "His shadow touched the plate! It counts! But first base umpire Jim Joyce wasn't paying attention and declared the runner safe , ruining the perfect game, and ruining the one great achievement of Galarraga's life the very next batter would get an out, ending the game.

The crowd went nuts, sounding like they were about to riot. Galarraga's reaction to having the crowning achievement of his life ruined by an incompetent umpire? He said, "Nobody's perfect. Everybody's human.

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I understand. Joyce was working the next Tigers game, and Galarraga made it a point to carry the lineup card out, part of every pregame ritual. He shook the umpire's hand.

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Joyce was crying. Via LA Times "By the way, just so you know, I played with my nuts for about an hour before coming out here.

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In Germany, it was widely known that things were about to get very bad for the Jews. Seeing the approaching shitstorm, some Jewish families secretly sneaked their children out of the country, sending them to America on ships. A pair of year-old German girls -- Edith Westerfeld and Gerda Katz -- met on one of these boats, and for two weeks during their journey, they became friends.

Two girls, heading to New York, while a black wave of horror was about to crush the lives they left behind. Upon arrival in America, they went their separate ways -- one to Chicago, the other to Seattle -- and never saw each other again. For most of a century, anyway.

Then, 73 years later, Westerfeld's daughter was talking to a classroom full of middle school kids about the Holocaust. She told this story, about the ship and her mother and her mother's long-long-lost friend. Nobody needs to stay lost.

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Getty Then they showed her how to watch all the porn she could ever want for free. So, while we think of Internet-using year-olds as spending all of their time spamming racist comments on YouTube, this class spent four solid days tracking down Gerda Katz. They found her, still alive, and got her in touch with Westerfeld. After more than seven decades, those two girls on the boat spoke to each other, and later met up in person, in Seattle. The Internet, it turns out, is actually pretty good for this stuff.

In , a woman living in Malaysia took to her webcam and asked for help finding the mother she had left behind in America 32 years earlier , after her father had taken her away. She uploaded the video to YouTube and, months later, her mother's nephew and his girlfriend were sitting around vanity searching their own names when this weird YouTube video came up.

The nephew forwarded it around to the rest of the family. They got in contact with the woman from YouTube, Halimah Hajar, and said yes, your mother is still around, and she has a whole family now. A couple of webcam conversations later, they bought her a one-way ticket to come to the USA.

Faith and Testimony

She was hesitant, because she had been raised as a Muslim and heard that Muslims weren't welcome in the U. She was home. In China, meanwhile, they've set up a whole system for doing this. Child kidnappings are rampant there, and in a country of 1.