Bringing Friends to Jesus
To Sabbath School teachers: This story is for Sabbath, September 24.
en-year-old Wellington loved flying kites in Brazil.
First, he picked up his kite and walked outside of his house in the city of Maua. Everyone knows that you cannot fly a kite in a house. That would be silly.
Then Wellington looked for an open space without any nearby houses, trees, or power lines. He didn’t want the kite to get caught on anything. A big, grassy park was a great place to fly a kite, but sometimes he flew the kite in the street.
The big challenge was getting the kite to fly up in the sky. Wellington was quite good at it. He stood with his back to the wind, held up the kite, and let out the line. If the wind was strong enough, the kite went right up into the air. Wellington then let the kite fly away from him and pulled it back toward him, let the kite fly away from him, and pulled it back toward him. This caused the kite to fly higher and higher. Then he just watched the kite fly merrily in the sky.
One day, during school vacation, Wellington was flying his kite on the street near his house. As he watched the kite soar far above him, and a man and a woman walked up. They said that they were the directors of a Pathfinder club at a nearby Seventh-day Adventist church.
“Would you be interested in becoming a Pathfinder?” the man asked.
“We do fun activities and learn about Jesus from the Bible,” the woman said.
Wellington had never heard about Pathfinders before. His family was Christian, but they were not Adventists. He was curious to learn more about Pathfinders.
With his parents’ permission, he signed up to join the Pathfinder club at the beginning of the school year.
Wellington enjoyed learning about Jesus and doing fun activities at the Pathfinder club. It was even more fun than flying a kite. He especially loved learning about Jesus, and he wanted to know more.
So, he started studying the Bible with someone at the church. For three years he studied the Bible. Then, when he was 13, he decided to give his heart to Jesus and get baptized. His whole family came to the church to watch his baptism. From that time on, Wellington knew that he had made the best decision of his life.
Wellington loved the church members, and the church members loved him. He worshiped with them at the church every Sabbath.
But after a while, he noticed that some Pathfinders stopped coming to church on Sabbath. Then others stopped coming. Soon it seemed like there were hardly any young people coming to church on Sabbath. There weren’t very many older people, either.
Wellington was worried. He wondered if the church would have to close. What could he do? He prayed.
“Please, God, do a miracle,” he said.
As he prayed, he realized that perhaps he could do something himself. Maybe he could help. He remembered the man and woman who had invited him to learn the Bible at the Pathfinders club when he was 10. He decided that if boys and girls did not want to come to church on Sabbath, then he would take church to them.
The next Sabbath morning, Wellington and a friend knocked on the door of one of the youths who had stopped coming to church.
“Good morning!” Wellington said. “I would like to have Sabbath School with you in your home today.”
The next Sabbath, he and his friend went to another home.
After three months, five boys and girls had returned to church to worship on Sabbaths. After six months, 22 boys and girls were attending Sabbath School every week at the church.
Wellington was so happy! God had saved the church and, more important, God was saving many boys and girls at the same time. Wellington felt like he was a kite, flying high in the sky.
“I praise God, who held my hand,” Wellington says. “Today, I don’t live without Him.”
Part of today’s Thirteenth Sabbath Offering will help open a new church in Wellington’s city of Maua, so more boys and girls can learn about Jesus. The Thirteenth Sabbath Offering will also help open seven other churches in the South American Division: three more in Brazil, and another four in Bolivia. Thank you for planning a generous offering.