There was a Baptist pastor during the American Revolution, Peter Miller, who lived in Ephrata, Pennsylvania. He enjoyed the friendship of George Washington.
In Ephrata also lived Michael Wittman, an evil-minded sort who did all he could to oppose and humiliate the pastor.
One day Michael Wittman was arrested for treason and sentenced to die. Peter Miller traveled seventy miles on foot to Philadelphia to plead for the life of the traitor.
“No, Peter,” General Washington said. “I cannot grant you the life of your friend.”
“My friend!” exclaimed the old preacher. “He’s the bitterest enemy I have.”
“What?” cried Washington. “You’ve walked seventy miles to save the life of an enemy? That puts the matter in different light. I’ll grant your pardon.” And he did.
Peter Miller took Michael Wittman back home to Ephrata, no longer an enemy but a friend.
Thanks to Lynn Jost for sharing this story.
Happy Birthday, President Washington! We are so blessed to live in the wonderful country you founded.
When did you go out of your way to plead for someone who was in trouble?