God, With Great Demonstration Of Love, Forgives The Truly Repentant

Mr. Moody shares a personal story of his mother's unwavering love for her son who had left home and become a wanderer. Despite his absence, she prayed for him and hoped for his return, even setting a chair for him at Thanksgiving. When he finally returned, she forgave him without hesitation, reminding us that God too will forgive those who ask for mercy.

Following excerpt from 55% into Moody's Anecdotes and Illustrations by D. L. Moody
I can give you a little experience of my own family. Before I was fourteen years old the first thing I remember was the death of my father. He had been unfortunate in business and failed. Soon after his death the creditors came in and took everything. My mother was left with a large family of children. One calamity after another swept over the entire household. Twins were added to the family, and my mother was taken sick. The eldest boy was fifteen years of age, and to him, my mother looked at, as a stay in her calamity, but all at once that boy became a wanderer. He had been reading some of the trashy novels, and the belief had seized him that he had only to go away to make a fortune. Away he went. I can remember how eagerly she used to look for tidings of that boy; how she used to send us to the post office to see if there was a letter from him and recollect how we used to come back with the sad news, "No letter." I remember how in the evenings we used to sit beside her in that New England home, and we would talk about our father; but the moment the name of that boy was mentioned she would hush us into silence.

Some nights when the wind was very high, and the house, which was upon a hill, would tremble at every gust, the voice of my mother was raised in prayer for that wanderer who had treated her so unkindly. I used to think she loved him more than all the rest of us put together, and I believe she did. On a Thanksgiving day--you know that is a family day in New England--she used to set a chair for him, thinking he would return home. Her family grew up and her boys left home. When I got so that I could write, I sent letters all over the country but could find no trace of him. One day while in Boston the news reached me that he had returned. While in that city, I remember how I used to look for him in every store--he had a mark on his face--but I never got any trace.

One day while my mother was sitting at the door, a stranger was seen coming toward the house, and when he came to the door he stopped. My mother didn't know her boy. He stood there with folded arms and a great beard flowing down his breast, his tears trickling down his face. When my mother saw those tears she cried, "Oh, it's my lost son," and entreated him to come in. But he stood still. "No, mother," he said, "I will not come in till I hear first you forgive me." Do you believe she was not willing to forgive him? Do you think she was likely to keep him long-standing there? She rushed to the threshold and threw her arms around him, and breathed forgiveness. Ah, sinner, if you but ask God to be merciful to you a sinner, ask Him for forgiveness, although your life has been bad--ask Him for mercy, and He will not keep you long waiting for an answer.

Moody’s Anecdotes and Illustrations

Publisher:Rhodes & McClure
Library:Project Gutenberg

Scripture Testimony Index stories in this book

A blind man who was told he would never see again, became a servant of the Lord and printed the Bible in 12 different languages, in raised letters for the blind to read. He had a congregation of three million people, and though he was physically blind, he had eyes for his soul and could see a bright future with God.
A young minister claimed that salvation is attained by Christ's life, not by His death. When asked about passages related to Christ's death, he said he never preaches them and instead focuses on moral essays to refine people. Moody argued that abandoning the doctrine of Christ's sacrifice on the cross makes religion a sham, as the whole teaching of the Bible is centered around Christ's death for our sins.
A little boy used to travel five miles every Sunday to attend a mission Sunday-school because he felt loved there. When asked why he didn't attend a closer school, his powerful reply was, "Because they love a fellow over there."
Moody shares a story of a young boy who was misbehaving in Sunday school, but Moody showed him love and kindness, which eventually led the boy to become a Christian. The boy's mother, who had previously resisted Christianity, was moved by her son's transformation and also became a Christian.
Dwight L. Moody tells the story of his experience preaching to prisoners in a New York City prison, where he found every inmate to be innocent of any wrongdoing. The inmates all had excuses for being there, and Moody was discouraged until he found a man who believed he was truly lost and cried out for mercy. Moody shared the good news of salvation through Jesus with this man, who eventually found joy and peace.
Mr Moody recalls an incident while preaching in Glasgow where he urged the audience to accept Christ and meet him at the "marriage supper of the Lamb". Three sisters and another young lady were convicted of their sins and accepted Christ. However, one of them fell ill with scarlet fever the next day and passed away soon after, but not before telling her family that she was going home to be with Jesus and died a happy Christian.
Moody recalls a time when a pantheist tried to lure him away from Christianity after he had just converted. The pantheist argued that God was everywhere and nowhere, which left Moody feeling lost until he realized that the Bible provided evidence of heaven and God's influence on earth.
Moody reflects on a past preaching experience where he made a mistake by giving his audience a week to think about what they would do with Jesus. On the night of the sermon, a fire broke out in Chicago and destroyed the building where he preached, scattering the audience. Moody learned that a most vital lesson to never put off the day of salvation.
Moody's kindness and hospitality to a complete stranger helped the stranger accept the Lord Jesus into his life. Much later, when even Moody had forgotten this stranger, he received a letter from the thankful brother.
During a meeting in Edinburgh, an usher pointed out a notorious sceptic and suggested Mr Moody put him out. Instead, Moody approached the man and asked if he could pray with him, but he refused. Moody prayed for him anyway, and a few months later, the infidel became troubled and asked a Christian barrister to pray for him. The sceptic later found Christ and is now doing good work.
A woman's unbelieving husband wouldn't allow religion to be talked about and rejected her prayers. But the woman continued to pray at 12 o'clock every day for a year, and even after her faith began to waver, she persisted for six more months until her husband was finally moved to pray and ask for forgiveness for his sins.
Mr. Moody shares a personal story of his mother's unwavering love for her son who had left home and become a wanderer. Despite his absence, she prayed for him and hoped for his return, even setting a chair for him at Thanksgiving. When he finally returned, she forgave him without hesitation, reminding us that God too will forgive those who ask for mercy.
During a sermon in London, preacher Mr Dawson declared that there was not a single person in the city that Christ could not save. Later, a young lady asked him to help a young man who believed he couldn't be saved, leading Mr Dawson to find the man in a garret in the East End. Mr Dawson shared the gospel with the man, who eventually found peace in Christ, and Mr Dawson even managed to reconcile the man with his father before he passed away.
A failed businessman was on the verge of ending his life when the Lord, in the voice of his late mother, spoke to him, encouraging him to pray whenever he got into trouble. That Voice delivered him from taking his own life and led him to the Saviour.
One cold winter night after the Chicago fire, D.L. Moody preached about grace and asked the audience if they wanted to hear more about it. To his disappointment, everyone left except for one poor man who had lost everything due to his drinking problem and wanted to learn more about grace. Moody talked to him and they prayed together, and the man eventually became an earnest worker for the faith; the grace of God transformed his life.
Having done his best to lead his son to the Lord, it was a father's pleasure to hear that his dying son feared not death but was rather looking forward to uniting with his Saviour.
A Christian lady takes her wealthy friend to visit an old bed-ridden saint living in a dirty and dark garret. Despite the unpleasant surroundings, the saint remains cheerful and reminds them that "it's better higher up," teaching us to look beyond our present circumstances and towards the joy that awaits us in heaven.
Mr Moody recalls the incredible scene where a dying soldier hears his name being called in the roll of heaven and answers, passing into the presence of God; making a mockery of death as a result.
A former drunkard, rejected by his family, found salvation through a good Samaritan lawyer and went on to become a leader in a young men's meeting in New York, inspiring others to seek salvation and fight against the works of the devil.
A young boy's courage in the face of persecution from his own father, was enough witness to his father. Soon, he too wanted what his son had.
DL Moody shares about a woman who despite being bedridden for ten years, poor and in poor health, continued to praise her God. Full of gladness and love for God, she trusted in His provision for her every need, finding reasons to praise Him even in her difficult circumstances.
A mother in Philadelphia was heartbroken over her two sons who were on the path to ruin, and she asked a group of Christians to join her to pray for them. The very next day, both sons had separate encounters with the Lord and found their way to Christ, returning home happy and sharing their newfound faith with their mother. They later testified in a young converts' meeting, sharing their story of transformation and the resulting joy in their home.
It took months but a mother's consistent prayers caught up with her worldly military son and he surrendered his life to the Lord.
A little cripple on her deathbed was distressed because she could not actively labor for God among the lost. Her clergyman advised her to pray for them and write their names down, and she did so. Later, a revival sprang up in the village, and when the little cripple died, a roll of papers was found under her pillow bearing the names of fifty-six persons, every one of whom had been converted.
A man, rejected by two secret societies due to his bad character, found hope at a prayer meeting where he heard that Christ had come to save sinners. He believed in Christ and was saved, despite having no character to recommend him, and was grateful that Christ did not reject him.
During the beginning of a war, a hard-hearted landlord demanded rent from a family whose father had joined the army and couldn't pay. After the landlord threatened to evict them, the mother began to weep, but her young daughter prayed to God for a little home, and miraculously, their landlord's heart was touched, and they never had to pay rent again.
Mr. Moody shares a story about a man who wanted to become a Christian but was too afraid of what his companions would think. Despite Mr. Moody's efforts to help him, the man kept putting it off until he got sick and was on his deathbed. Sadly, he died without making the most important decision to accept Christ as his Lord and Saviour.
Mr. Moody's attempt at preaching the gospel to a stranger on the street was met with anger and a rain of curses. But days later, the same man, under conviction of sin, came to Mr. Moody seeking guidance for his salvation, having been plagued by guilt since their encounter. They prayed together, and the man became a Christian, eventually going off to war with a newfound faith.
During his time in London, a wealthy doctor in his seventies asked D.L. Moody to come and see him privately about his soul. The doctor's wife had been praying for him for fifty years, to no avail. But eventually, with Moody's guidance, that prayer was answered; the doctor accepted Christ and made a public confession of his faith to his family, bringing great joy and relief to his daughter and loved ones.
A young lady in distress of mind could not find peace despite having promise after promise quoted to her from the scripture. It was only when she revealed her bitterness towards another young lady that Mr Moody realized that she needed to forgive to receive salvation. As she and her offender knelt together and forgave each other, joy beamed on their souls, their difficulties vanished and salvation was gladly received.
At the Brooklyn Rink, a reporter known for his drunken brawls and infidelity spoke scoffingly about the Christian faith. However, after attending one of Mr Moody's addresses on love and sympathy, he experienced a powerful conversion, giving up his previous life and embracing the newness of life in Christ Jesus.