As a man from London walked down George Street in Sydney, Australia, a white-haired man stepped out of a doorway, gave him a tract and asked: “If you died tonight, would you go to Heaven?”
“I was astounded by those words” said the man. “Nobody ever asked me that before. All the way back to London, I thought about what he said. I told a friend about it, and he led me to Christ.” This man went on to become a preacher. Years later, at a conference in Australia, he asked a woman he was counselling about her relationship with Christ. She said: “I used to live in Sydney. A few months ago, I was back there, and while shopping on George Street, a white-haired gentleman stepped out of a doorway, offered me a tract and asked, “If you died tonight, would you go to Heaven?” I was so disturbed, I went into a nearby church, talked to a minister, and he led me to Christ.” The London preacher wasn’t surprised, because he had experienced the same thing.
After the conference, he went on to preach in Perth. After the service, he rejoined the senior elder for a meal. During the conversation, he asked the elder: “How were you saved?” The elder said, “I grew up in this church, but never made a commitment to Christ. While on a business trip to Sydney three years ago, a white-haired man stepped out of a doorway on George Street, gave me a tract, and asked ‘If you died tonight, would you go to Heaven?’ I told him that I was a church elder, but that didn’t impress him. When I returned to Perth. I told my pastor about * this man’s question, and he led me to Christ. He told me he’d long been concerned about my relationship with Christ.” The London preacher then flew back to England to speak at the Keswick Convention in the Lake District. He mentioned these testimonies about the white-haired man on George Street. At the end of the meeting, four elderly pastors came to him and said: “We got saved 25 years ago through that same white-haired man on George Street.
He then flew to the Caribbean for another conference, and again told how he and others got saved through the work of this man on George Street. After his message, three missionaries came to him and said, “We also got saved 15 years ago through that same man on George Street.” From the Caribbean, he went to Atlanta. Georgia to speak at a chaplain’s convention. During a meal with the Chaplain General, the London preacher asked how he got saved. The chaplain said, “It was a miracle. I was on an American ship in the Pacific. We docked in Sydney harbour and as usual we sailors got drunk. We got on the wrong bus and ended up on George Street. As I stumbled off the bus, a white-haired man confronted me with a tract and a question: “Sailor, if you died tonight, would you go to Heaven?” The fear of God shocked me sober. Back on the ship, I talked to the chaplain, and he led me to Christ. I went into the ministry and now I’m Chaplain General over one thousand chaplains all bent on soul-winning.”
Six months later, the London preacher went to a convention of 5000 Indian missionaries in northeast India. At the end, the Indian missionary in charge took him to supper in his humble home. During the meal, the preacher asked him: “How did you, a Hindu, come to Christ?” He answered: “I travelled worldwide for the Indian Diplomatic Mission. While in Sydney, I did some last-minute shopping for gifts for my family. As I walked down George Street, a white-haired man offered me a Gospel tract and asked: “If you died tonight, would you go to Heaven?” I thanked him for the tract, but his question disturbed me. When I returned to India, I went to an Indian priest. He couldn’t help, but said: “To satisfy your curiosity, talk to the village missionary.” I did, and he led me to Christ. I quit Hinduism, left the diplomatic service and began to study for the ministry. Now, by God’s grace, I am in charge of all these missionaries and we’re winning thousands for Christ.”
Eight months later, this London preacher was again preaching in Sydney. He asked the minister there if he knew an elderly, white-haired man who handed out tracts on George street. He said: “Yes, his name is Genor, but he doesn’t do it any longer. He’s too frail.” The preacher wanted to meet him, so they went to his apartment. An old man welcomed them and offered them tea. The London preacher told of his own conversion, and of all the people he’d met since then who were saved after their encounter with the white-haired man on George Street.
The old man listened with tears running down his cheeks. Then he told his own story: “I was a reprobate sailor on an Australian battleship. In a crisis, one of my mates, a Christian whom I ridiculed many times, was there for me, and led me to Jesus, and my life changed from night to day. I was so grateful that I promised Jesus I’d witness for Him to at least ten people a day. I’ve done this for 40 years, hi my retirement, the best place was on George Street because of the crowds. Many people took the tracts, but in 40 years of doing this work, I haven’t heard of anyone coming to Jesus until today.”
By my calculation, that little white-haired man influenced at least 146,000 people to come to Jesus. I believe God was showing that London preacher just the very tip of this Gospel iceberg. Only God knows how many more were won to Christ and went on to serve Him. Mr. Genor died just weeks after receiving this encouragement. Can you imagine the reward he received in Heaven for his faithful service? During his life, his story never appeared in any Christian magazine. He was only known by a few believers in Sydney, but I assure you he’s well known in Heaven. Just imagine his welcome when he heard these words: “Well done, good and faithful servant… Enter into the joy of your Lord” (Matthew 25 verse 23).
Article by Dave Smethurst and submitted by Alec Legge.