The First Encounter with the Good News


Do you remember the first time you heard about the gift Jesus gave us through his death and resurrection? Can you remember when it clicked for you? I remember the moment clearly when I decided, at ten years old, to give my life to Christ. It was a deep pull within me. I knew that I loved Jesus and wanted to serve Him wherever life took me. It was an overwhelming and beautiful moment of recognition that my life would be forever committed to the Lord.


Recently at a church conference in Tanzania, a young child had their first encounter with the good news of Jesus. Perhaps he just came because he heard there were snacks. Or maybe his parents were outside at the adult portion of the conference. Whatever life was like for him, whatever struggles or poverty he was facing, he ended up sitting in a classroom on a warm day in the middle of August at a Christian conference.


The teacher began sharing a Bible story and she could see him listening with rapt attention from his seat. The impact of this Bible story seemed to spread from his fingers to his toes. This was news to him. This was important. As she came to the end of the lesson, she could see the little boy was almost in tears. She asked the children if anyone wanted to know more about Jesus and his hand shot into the air with all the force his little self could hold. With tears streaming down his face, he not only ate the food provided for the children, but he swallowed the good news of the gospel whole.


God had spoken to the heart of this little Tanzanian boy and the impact was evident. On that day, 25 children said that they wanted to learn more about Jesus. Thankfully, they have access to local pastors and Christian adults to continue their learning and foster their relationship with God.


What a beautiful day it is when the Lord touches our hearts and changes our lives.