Friday, May 30, 2008

What God Can Do With 57 Cents

What God Can Do With 57 Cents

A sobbing little girl stood near a small church from which she had been turned away because of “it was too crowded”. “I can’t go to Sunday School,” she sobbed to the pastor as he walked by. Seeing her shabby, unkempt appearance, the pastor guessed the reason, and taking her by the hand, took her inside, and found a place for her in the Sunday School class. The child was so touched that she went to bed that night thinking of the children who have no place to worship Jesus.

Some two years later, this child lay dead in one of the poor tenement buildings, and the parents called for the kindhearted pastor, who had befriended their daughter, to handle the final arrangements. As her poor little body was being moved, a worn and crumpled purse was found which seemed to have been rummaged from some trash dump. Inside was found 57 cents and a note scribbled in childish handwriting, which read, “This is to help build the little church bigger so more children can go to Sunday School.” For two years she had saved for this offering of love.

When the pastor tearfully read the note, he knew instantly what he would do. Carrying this note and the cracked, red pocket bood to the pulpit, he told the story of unselfish love and devotion. He challenged this deacons to get busy and raise enough money for the larger building. But, the story does not end there!

A newspaper learned of the story and published it. It was read by a realtor, who offered them a parcel of land worth many thousands of dollars. When told that the church could not pay so much, he offered it for 57 cents. Church members made large donations. Checks came from far and wide. Within five years the little girl’s gift had increased to USD 250,000.00 – a huge sum for that time (near the turn of the century). Her unselfish love had paid large devidents.

When you are in the city of Philadelphia, look up Temple Baptist Church, with a seating capacity of 3,300 and Temple University, where hundreds of students are trained. Have a look too, at the Good Samaritan Hospital, and a Sunday School building which houses hundreds of Sunday scholars, so that no child in the area will ever need to be left outside during Sunday School time.

In one of the rooms of this building may be seen the picture of the sweet face of the little girl whose 57 cents, so sacrificially saved, made such remarkable history. Alongside of it is a portrait of her kind pastor, Dr Russel H. Conwell, author of the book, “Acres of Diamonds” – A True Story

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