"Going After the Right Man"

On being yourself.

A. A. LEISKE, Moderator, American Religious Town Hall, Television Progra

"11:30 A:M.—flying near Detroit. We are staving in the air, unable to land because of the weather. I offered a prayer for a safe landing. Just received word we are flying to New York and we don't know when we are going to land." These are the words I find in my diary of March 29, 1954, which I wrote during a blinding snow­and-sleet storm on our flight between Mil­waukee and New York.

On that day I was flying from Minneapolis to Detroit, but when we arrived at our destina­tion we could not land because of the storm. The pilot was instructed to turn back and land at the airport in Milwaukee. When we arrived there the storm had preceded us. The pilot was then ordered to try to make New York.

The plane was tossed helplessly to and fro in the great storm like a kite. The inward fears of the passengers on the ship could be felt in the atmosphere. Realizing that anything might happen, I decided to write a note in my diary to Mrs. Leiske regarding some personal matters, in case I should not return. Then I also de­scribed my personal observation of the storm, and how I felt in such an uncertain situation.

Having finished my message, I picked up a book and began to read. The chapter I was reading was entitled "Going After the Wrong Man." The last paragraph closed with a number of pointed questions to the reader such as: "Which of you is going after the wrong man? . .. The man of might, bruising your way to recognition? . . . Is it the man of knowledge . . . to seize your fellows and squeeze them as ripe grapes into your cup? These are the wrong men. You are the man you should be after."

This was a pointed message for an air traveler in a plane that was trying to make a successful landing through dark, rolling clouds of ice, snow, and destructive winds. I found myself at that moment in deep reflection, with a real consciousness of having been after the wrong men—men whom I felt had done me great harm. But as I reflected I realized they had done me great good—just as had the brothers of Joseph when they sold him into Egypt. It was a very hard experience at the time, but later Joseph recognized that the Lord had used his brothers for his (Joseph's) own good.

I began to go after the right man—myself­and to enumerate all the great blessings that had come to me through what had seemed at the time to be the hardness of my friends. Then I understood the meaning of the statement by the servant of the Lord: "Could Christians real­ize how many times the Lord has ordered their way, that the purposes of the enemy concerning them might not be accomplished, they would not stumble along complainingly. Their faith would be stayed on God, and no trial would have power to move them."—Prophets and Kings, p. 576.

After a silent season of prayer in that storm-tossed ship in the heavens, I wrote a letter to the men who had had a hand in guiding my destiny. I expressed my sincere appreciation for their help in directing my course to a far greater joy and capacity of service, in reaching mil­lions instead of hundreds with the truth of God for this hour. These blessings would not have passed my way if I had been left in the valley with my contentment undisturbed.

This is what I wrote to those whom the Lord has used to direct me along right avenues:

DEAR FRIEND:

Today as I was being tossed to and fro in the heavens in my flight to a landing field in New York, I read a chapter in my devotional book, Going After the Wrong Man; and as I viewed myself in the light of my life's experi­ences I thought of all the people I know who have been steppingstones in helping me to my higher experiences. You came to my mind as one who has been a great blessing in my life and I decided I must take time to say Thank you.

This letter is the result of my meditation and reflection on men who have helped to guide my destiny. I just want to pause long enough this side of heaven to say Thanks to you, my brother, for your inspiration and help on my path toward the kingdom of God. Your in­fluence and life, in crossing my pathway, has been a great help and blessing to me.

Thanks again.

Your friend,

A. A. LEISKE


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A. A. LEISKE, Moderator, American Religious Town Hall, Television Progra

December 1958

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