In his book, Time Power,
Charles Hobbs tells the story of a scullery maid who went to hear a
speech by the naturalist Louis Agassiz. After the speech, she waited
to speak to him and marveled at his opportunities. The professor
replied, “Have you never received an opportunity?” She said she was
just a scullery maid and had not. He asked her where she worked and she
mentioned the kitchen.” He asked “Where do you put your feet?” She
replied in a puzzled way, “On the floor.” He asked again, “What is
the floor made of?” She replied with exasperation, “Bricks.” “Write
me a letter about the brick,” said the great scientist. She took up the
challenge and learned everything she could about the brick, it’s
composition how it was made, etc. She wrote a thirty-six page letter
to Agassiz about the brick. Later she received a check in the mail.
The great professor had turned in her letter to a journal and they
published it. At the bottom of his note of explanation, he asked,
“What is beneath the brick?” She picked up the brick and saw an ant.
She later wrote a book that was published. It was all about ants.
J. Michael Shannon is professor of preaching at Cincinnati Bible College in Cincinnati, OH.