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Conversion of D. L. Moody: The Prince of Evangelists

compiled by Hy. Pickering

D.L. MoodyD. L. Moody, the famous Evangelist, when eighteen years of age, was a boot salesman in his uncle's store in Boston. His Sunday School teacher was a Mr. Kimball, and he had set his heart on winning the young man for Christ. After praying about the matter, he arranged to visit him at the boot store. "I was determined," to use his own words, "to speak to him about Christ and about his soul, and started down to Holton's boot store. When I was nearly there I began to wonder whether I ought to go in just then during business hours. I thought my call might embarrass the boy, and that when I went away the other clerks would ask who I was, and taunt him with my efforts in trying to make him a good boy. In the meantime I had passed the store, and, discovering this, I determined to make a dash for it, and have it over at once. I found him in the back part of the building wrapping up shoes. I went up to him at once, and putting my hand on his shoulder, I made what I felt afterwards was a very weak plea for Christ. I don't know just what words I used, nor could Mr. Moody tell. I simply told him of Christ's love for him, and the love Christ wanted in return. That was all there was. It seemed the young man was just ready for the light that then broke upon him, and there in the back of that store in Boston, D. L. Moody gave himself and his life to Christ."

Forty years afterwards, when preaching in Boston, Mr. Moody himself thus described the effect of his conversion upon his life: "I can almost throw a stone from Tremont Temple to the spot where I found God forty years ago. I wish I could do something to lead some of you young men to that same God. He has been a million times better to me than I have been to Him. I remember the morning on which I came out of my room after I had first trusted Christ. I thought the sun shone a good deal brighter than it ever had before. I thought that it was just smiling upon me, and as I walked out upon Boston Common and heard the birds singing in the trees, I thought they were all singing a song to me. Do you know? I fell in love with the birds. I had never cared for them before. It seemed to me that I was in love with all creation. I had not a bitter feeling against any man and I was ready to take all men to my heart. If a man has not the love of God shed abroad in his heart he has not yet been regenerated."

Mr. Moody's experience was the same as that of the poet who sung:

"Heaven above is softer blue,
  Earth around is sweeter green;
Something lives in every hue
  Christless eyes have never seen.

"Birds with gladder songs o'erflow,
  Flowers with brighter beauties shine,
Since I know, as now I know,
  I am His, and He is mine.


Copied for WholesomeWords.org from Twice-Born Men: True Conversion Records of 100 Well-Known Men in All Ranks of Life compiled by Hy. Pickering. London: Pickering & Inglis, [193-?]

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