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Moodys Anecdotes And Illustrations by Dwight L. Moody

The Artist and the Beggar.

I have read of an artist who wanted to paint a picture of the Prodigal Son. He searched through the madhouse, and the poor houses, and the prisons, to find a man wretched enough to represent the prodigal, but he could not find one. One day he was walking down the streets and met a man whom he thought would do. He told the poor beggar he would pay him well if he came to his room and sat for the portrait. The beggar agreed, and the day was appointed for him to come. The day came, and a man put in his appearance at the artist's room. |You made an appointment with me,| he said, when he was shown into the studio. The artist looked at him, |I never saw you before,| he said; |you cannot have an appointment with me.| |Yes,| he said, |I agreed to meet you to-day at ten o'clock.| |You must be mistaken; it must have been some other artist; I was to see a beggar here at this hour.| |Well,| says the beggar, |I am he.| |You?| |Yes.| |Why, what have you been doing?| |Well, I thought I would dress myself up a bit before I got painted.| |Then,| said the artist, |I do not want you; I wanted you as you were; now, you are no use to me.| That is the way Christ wants every poor sinner, just as he is. It is only the ragged sinners that open God's wardrobe. I remember a boy to whom I gave a pair of boots, and I found him shortly after in his bare feet again. I asked him what he had done with them, and he replied that when he was dressed up it spoiled his business; when he was dressed up no one would give anything. By keeping his feet naked he got as many as five pairs of boots a day. So if you want to come to God don't dress yourself up. It is the naked sinner God wants to save.

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