Living in Chicken Coops: A Guide to Producing Generous People

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I found myself thinking about my grandfather the other day. Actually, I find myself thinking about him a lot. He’s been gone a little over ten years now.

Theodore Roosevelt Murray left a mark on the world as big as his name. A former Marine who fought in World War II, he faced life leading with his chin. Growing up, I thought that if for some reason grandpa had to face off against John Wayne … John Wayne was going to be in a world of hurt. Tough guy. Man’s man.

When traveling, he often slept on picnic tables in rest areas and cooked hot dogs on the engine block of his old blue Ford station wagon. He had fists like anvils and a glare that reduced grown men to stammering incoherence.

But the other side of my grandfather that impressed me even more was his faith. Ted Murray was devout. He not only cared deeply about his faith, he actually lived his life as though his faith mattered more than anything else in the world. Sell everything you own and give it to the poor?

Yeah. He and my grandmother did that. Without knowing any Spanish, they packed up a few things and drove down to Mexico to build a home to raise abandoned children. And the year that it took them to build that children’s home they spent living in a renovated chicken coop.

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