At a seaside resort in Hawai, James Donald who knew a lot on boats was very often called by many owners to paint their boats. One such person asked James to paint his boat. He brought with him paint and brushes and began to paint the boat a bright red, as the owner suggested. While painting, he noticed that there was a small hole in the hull and quietly without making much fuss repaired it. When finished painting, he received his money and left.
The next day, the owner of the boat came and presented James with a nice fat cheque, much higher than the payment for painting his boat. James was surprised and said ‘You’ve already paid me for painting the boat Sir and it was such a small service, certainly it’s no worth paying me such a high amount for something so insignificant.’
The owner replied: ‘My dear friend, you do not understand. Let me tell you what happened. When I asked you to paint the boat, I forgot to mention about the hole. When the boat dried, my kids took the boat and went on a fishing trip. They did not know that there was a hole. I was not at home at that time. When I returned and noticed they had taken the boat, I was desperate because I remembered that the boat had a hole. Imagine my relief and joy when I saw them returning from fishing. Then I examined the boat and found that you had repaired the hole! You see, now, what you did? You saved the life of my children. I do not have enough money to pay for your small good deed. I am so thankful to you and cannot tell you how pleased I am to see my children safe and sound and all the credit goes to you. I fall short of my words.’
So, no matter who, when or how, just continue to help, sustain, listen attentively and carefully repair all the ‘leaks’ you find, because you never know when one is in need of us or when God holds a pleasant surprise for us to be helpful and be of importance to someone. You may have repaired numerous ‘boat holes’ along the way of several people without realizing how many lives you’ve saved. So keep up the good work.