Indeed he was ill, near to death. But God had mercy on him, and not only on him but on me also, lest I should have sorrow upon sorrow. I am the more eager to send him, therefore, that you may rejoice at seeing him again, and that I may be less anxious.
Introduction to Betty's tesitmony:
James 1:18 says, "by the excercise of his will he brought us forth by the word of truth."
This is what God did in my life. I did not grow up in a Christian home, but when I was 10 years old, our family briefly atended a church that had a Sunday School for children where the Bible was taught. My first Sunday there, the 4th grade teacher gave us a challenge: memorize the names of books of the Bible in order, recite them to the class, and you will be rewarded with a Bible with your name embossed in gold on the front. I took up the challenge and 6 weeks later, for the first time in my life, there was put into my hands a Bible with my name embossed in gold on the front of it.
I could not have known as a 4th grader the eternal significance of this moment. But the reality was that my life from this point forward would be forever changed.
How can you measure the impact of the word of God in the heart of a child? It is an eternal work of God. His word does not return to him void. Yet eternal fruit can sometimes take decades to be produced.