A Blessed Blunder

At a gospel meeting in Des Moines I had preached as, clearly as I could the glorious Word of the Christ of the cross. Afterward I spied a young man who evidently sought to elude me. To him I made my way.
After a brief conversation I persuaded him to come with me into a small adjoining room. Here I learned that it was through a "mistake" that he had "blundered" into the meeting. But surely God by His Spirit was leading.
The young man was a Jew and, as he thought, on his way to a concert. The brightly lighted gospel hall appeared to him to be the place he sought for an evening's entertainment. The preaching was just beginning as he found a seat, and an immediate departure would have been embarrassing. He decided to "tough it out" and escape as soon as possible.
As to the Christian preacher's message that night, perhaps little was heard by the unwilling listener. He was utterly indifferent to Christianity, and almost insulting in his attitude toward me. In my frustration I looked earnestly to the Lord for guidance. I knew that He alone could give the right word.
"My word... shall not return unto Me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing where to I sent it." Isa. 55:1111So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it. (Isaiah 55:11).
Taking a small Testament from my pocket, I held it out to the young man. I said: "If you will promise me that you will get on your knees this night and read this verse I have marked, I will make you a present of the Book."
The verse was John 5:2424Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life. (John 5:24): "Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth My word, and believeth on Him that sent Me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life."
Glad to be rid of me so easily, the young fellow agreed and was soon on his way. Did he really get away?
It was several years later that a news item came to my attention: "Albert Nathan," I read, "a converted Israelite, is holding Bible studies in B—."
"Nathan"? That was the name of my Jewish listener! That night being a free one for me, I went to take the place of a listener. As I slipped into a rear seat, the announced speaker saw me. Hurrying down the aisle, he kept calling out: "I kept my promise! I kept my promise!"
As he grasped my hand, he exclaimed: "I got away from you, but I couldn't get away from God. I kept my promise to you; and that night on my knees I read the precious words of John 5:2424Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life. (John 5:24). Through it and through both my New Testament and the Old, the God of Jacob has by His Spirit brought me to know His Son Jesus as my Savior and my Lord. Going into that hall was the most blessed blunder I ever made."