Bringing the Text to Life
Winston Churchill had just delivered his tremendous "Blood, Sweat and Tears" speech. Harold Nicholson heard it, went home and wrote in his diary: "Winston makes a very short statement, but to the point." (Harold Nicholson, Diaries and Letters 1930-64, ed. Stanley Olson [New York :Atheneum, 1980], 83.)
A newspaper editor in Harrisburg, 35 miles away from Gettysburg, heard Lincoln's Gettysburg Address. He wrote in his paper the next day: "We pass over the silly remarks of the President; for the credit of the nation, we are willing that the veil of oblivion shall be dropped over them and that they should no more be repeated or thought of."
One of the worst things that can be said of people is that greatness passed by, and they did not recognize it. Yet in the words of Henry David Thoreau:
The morning wind forever blows;
The poem of creation is uninterrupted;
But few are the ears that hear it.
Every one of us here this morning has at one time felt that morning wind blowing by; every...