Scripture Verse

I am…the bright morning star. Revelation 22:16


Ina D. Ogdon (1872–1964)

Words: Ina D. Og­don, 1913. Ear­ly in her life, Og­don had hoped to preach on the Chau­tau­qua cir­cuit. However, her fa­ther’s ill­ness forced her to aban­don her plans for an ev­an­gel­is­tic ca­reer in or­der to care for him at home.

She wrote these en­cour­ag­ing words show­ing how one can serve the Lord in ma­ny dif­fer­ent ways and cir­cum­stances. In oth­er words, make the best of where God has put you.

Music: Charles H. Ga­bri­el (🔊 pdf nwc).

Charles H. Gabriel (1856–1932)


One of the stor­ies of [this] song has to do with a man so far away from its au­thor that, un­der any oth­er con­di­tions, it is al­most im­pos­si­ble that their lives should have had any con­tact.

He is the head of a na­tion­al bu­si­ness. He is a big man in the world of fi­nance, not on­ly in this coun­try but in oth­ers. Un­til a year ago he was just a splen­did think­ing ma­chine. Peo­ple were afraid of him. His em­ploy­ers, even men high in his con­fi­dence, found it dif­fi­cult to talk to him. Those in sub­ord­in­ate po­si­tions trem­bled when he looked their way, for he ne­ver did so un­less he had found a flaw in their work.

He was the kind of man who has been des­cribed in fic­tion but whom you do not oft­en see—a man of ir­on and steel. So far as hav­ing emo­tion, or an un­self­ish in­ter­est in hu­ma­ni­ty, he might as well have been a clev­er piece of high tem­pered mech­anism. One of his bu­si­ness as­so­ci­ates said once that he was so un­feel­ing, so im­per­son­al, so uny­ield­ing that he seemed in­hu­man.

One night in his won­der­ful car, he hap­pened to be driv­ing past the Bil­ly Sun­day Ta­ber­na­cle. There, by the grace of God, as he de­clares, one of his tires was punc­tured. While the chauf­feur was re­pair­ing the break, he sat in his car, ob­serv­ing the thou­sands who were crowd­ing in­to the build­ing. He felt no cu­ri­os­ity, he said. He had, for so long, trained his mind to fo­cus it­self on­ly on such mat­ters as re­lat­ed to his own bu­si­ness af­fairs, that there were ma­ny oc­cur­renc­es ev­en in his home ci­ty to which he ne­ver gave a thought.

The punc­ture was a bad one, and he grew a lit­tle bored. The thou­sands and thou­sands who kept pour­ing in­to the ta­ber­na­cle riv­et­ed his at­ten­tion, de­spite his strug­gle not to be in­ter­est­ed. He be­gan to won­der what the build­ing was, and what was go­ing on in­side. Then his chauf­feur re­port­ed that he would have to put on an emer­gen­cy tire.

The chauf­feur fin­ished his work, and looked in­side the car for his em­ploy­er, but he was not there.

A boy who was stand­ing near told him that the oth­er had gone in­to the ta­ber­na­cle. The chauf­feur was so sur­prised that he near­ly faint­ed, for he had ne­ver known his em­ploy­er to at­tend any meet­ing but a Board meet­ing of fi­nan­ciers.

Among those who hit the trail that night was the man of ir­on and steel. He sat down in his turn to wait for us to write down his name, his ad­dress, and his church pref­er­enc­es, as we al­ways do, and to one of the work­ers who ap­proached him for that pur­pose he gave some­thing of his re­mark­able sto­ry.

Some con­verts seemed dazed by the ex­pe­ri­ence through which they have just gone, and some are so hap­py that they can­not help cry­ing, but the man of steel was sim­ply more ef­fi­cient, more com­posed, and more keen than usu­al. He had al­rea­dy an­al­yzed his own change of heart, and want­ed to tell about it.

I don’t sup­pose a man like you can real­ize how I could have be­come so cold and in­dif­fer­ent to ev­ery­one, and ev­ery­thing in the world as I have be­come, he said. “I be­gan my bu­si­ness life when I was a ve­ry young man. All I thought about was mon­ey. I saw that ma­ny men failed to get mon­ey be­cause they stopped for oth­er things, and I de­ter­mined that I would so train my mind that it would not rec­og­nize the ex­is­tence of any­thing else but mon­ey. I suc­ceed­ed. I taught my­self to look on those around me as so ma­ny sha­dows out of which I could ex­tract what I want­ed.

“I have not mar­ried, and so fa­mi­ly life did not have an op­por­tu­ni­ty to soft­en me. I don’t think I ev­er loved a per­son in my life, cer­tain­ly not since I was a man. I have ne­ver given a thought to friend­ship in my life, I ne­ver read books that dealt with sen­ti­ment, I ne­ver read any­thing in the news­pa­pers but the fi­nan­cial re­ports, I care no­thing for mu­sic or the arts.

When I came here to­night I did not ev­en know what was go­ing on. I had to wait out­side while my chauf­feur put on a new tire, and I was bored. I list­ened, to­night, for the first time, to men talk­ing about the things I have al­ways re­fused to con­si­der—God and Hu­ma­ni­ty. Then came that song, ‘Bright­en the Cor­ner,’ and in its sim­ple me­lo­dy and mes­sage I heard some­thing that fin­ished my de­ci­sion. I’m go­ing to be­gin the job of bright­en­ing the cor­ner on bu­si­ness lines!

The de­gree and ex­tent to which he kept his word is com­mon talk in his home ci­ty and state. He is a man now to whom his as­so­ci­ates go for help when they are in tight plac­es. He has giv­en roy­al­ly to ev­ery hu­ma­ni­ta­ri­an cause which has come to his no­tice. He is a pow­er, now, in that church of which he was mere­ly a nom­in­al mem­ber for so ma­ny years. And in his of­fice, among his as­so­ci­ates and his em­ploy­ees, he is the friend, the ad­vis­er, the sym­pa­the­tic, ev­er rea­dy list­en­er, who is all but adored by those who know him.

Rodeheaver, pp. 7–11


Do not wait un­til some deed
Of great­ness you may do,
Do not wait to shed your light afar,
To the ma­ny du­ties
Ever near you now be true,
Brighten the cor­ner where you are.


Brighten the cor­ner where you are!
Brighten the cor­ner where you are!
Someone far from har­bor
You may guide across the bar;
Brighten the cor­ner where you are!

Just above are cloud­ed skies
That you may help to clear,
Let not nar­row self your way de­bar;
Though in­to one heart alone
May fall your song of cheer,
Brighten the cor­ner where you are.


Here for all your tal­ent you
May sure­ly find a need,
Here re­flect the bright and Morn­ing Star;
Even from your hum­ble hand
The Bread of Life may feed,
Brighten the cor­ner where you are.