That Snotty-Nosed Squirmy Boy


When Charles Spurgeon was a child, an itinerant preacher named Richard Knill stayed at his grandfather?s parsonage.? Upon spying the boy, he asked if they could meet the next morning.

…in my grandfather’s garden…in the sweetest way, he told me of the love of Jesus, and of the blessedness of trusting in Him and loving Him in our childhood.? With many a story he preached Christ to me, and told me how good God had been to him, and then he prayed that I might know the Lord and serve Him.? He knelt down in that arbour, and prayed for me with his arms about my neck…. on three successive days he taught me, and prayed with me; and before he had to leave, my grandfather had come back from the place where he had gone to preach, and all the family were gathered to morning prayer.? Then, in the presence of them all, Mr. Knill took me on his knee, and said, “This child will one day preach the gospel, and he will preach it to great multitudes.? I am persuaded that he will preach in the chapel of Rowland Hill, where (I think he said) I am now the minister.”

Mr. Knill gave the young Spurgeon a sixpence to learn the hymn, ?God Works in a Mysterious Way? and made him promise to have it sung when he preached in Rowland Hill.? Years later, after Spurgeon had been preaching for some time in London he was unexpectedly invited to speak at? – Rowland Hill.

All unsought by me, the minister ? invited me to preach there.? I went on the condition that the congregation should sing, “God Works in a Mysterious Way” — which was also done.*

Thank you,? all who serve in children?s ministry.? Thank you, all who teach in Christian and public schools.? Thank you mothers laboring at home to educate your children.? Thank you,? every parent seeking to teach your children about Jesus and have them in public or Christian schools. May this story inspire you.? May this story encourage every parent, struggling to raise their children to love Jesus.? That snotty-nosed squirmy boy who keeps asking to go to the bathroom may be the next Charles Spurgeon.

*From C.H. Spurgeon Autobiography: Volume I: The Early Years

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I’m a pastor at Saving Grace Church in Indiana, PA. I’m married to Kristi, have 5 kids, and a growing number of grandkids. I enjoy songwriting, oil painting and coffee, not necessarily in that order.