Binding Broken Hearts

Introducing Jesus to Those Who Need Him Most

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The Value of One - Part 4

It started with a Bible tract on a boring afternoon during the holidays. The teenage boy had nothing to do. So he went through the house looking for some entertainment.

This teenage boy was raised in a Christian home. His grandparents and great grandparents had served the Lord wholeheartedly. However, the teenage boy walked away from God and wanted nothing more to do with Him. His mother watched him walk away, but she never stopped praying for her son.

During that boring afternoon while perusing his father’s library, he came across a beautifully designed Bible tract that caught his attention. Intrigued by the cover, he sat down in an utterly unspiritual state to read it. He determined he would read only until the tract became overly preachy. Then he would go find something else to break the boredom.

Meanwhile in another part of the country, this boy’s mother suddenly felt the need to pray earnestly for her son. She was on holiday visiting friends, and she excused herself and went to her room. There she knelt down and stayed on her knees until the urgency disappeared.

As the teenage boy read the tract, he felt compelled to read it entirely. And by the time he was done, he “perceived that on account of what the Lord Jesus had done and suffered, Divine justice was satisfied, and by believing on Him who bore the wrath and curse due to sin, he was saved and had eternal life.”

Who was this teenage boy? J. Hudson Taylor.

This one teenage boy in the hands of God became the leader of the China Inland Mission in the late 1800’s. Through his efforts, a revival started in England, Australia, and the United States resulting in 1,000 missionaries volunteering to go to China to preach the gospel. Hundreds of thousands of people were brought to Christ through the efforts of the China Inland Mission.

What man of you, having a hundred sheep, if he loses one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the wilderness, and go after the one which is lost until he finds it? And when he has found it he lays it on his shoulders, rejoicing. And when he comes home, he calls together his friends and neighbors, saying to them, “Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep which was lost!” I say to you that likewise there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine just persons who need no repentance. Luke 15:4-7

Think for a moment. What if the person who left the tract at the Taylor home had thought there was no need to leave a tract at a Christian’s home? What if the tract had been carelessly designed and thus would not have caught Hudson Taylor’s eye? What if Hudson Taylor’s mother had not obeyed the urgent impulse to pray for her son at the exact moment he was reading the tract?

Remember, God values the “one.” God may ask us to leave a tract in a place where we think there is no need of the gospel. We need to do it anyway. God may ask us to pray urgently for someone at a time that may seem inconvenient for us. We need to do it anyway. God may ask us to put a little more effort into creating gospel materials that reflect the excellence of His kingdom, and this effort may take more time and/or resources that we don’t think we have. We need to do it anyway. We must never make assumptions about people’s need for or interest in the gospel. We need to share with all whom God places in our path. We may never know on this earth the vast ripple effect that will be created by one person in the hands of God. But we will know in heaven!

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