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Cesspool or Prayer Closet

Chuck Swindoll contends that our lives are determined “not by the strength of the gale, but by the set of the sail.” In other words, our attitude is much more important than our circumstances. No one better illustrates that thinking than George Chen.


Chen lived in China and was known as the “barefoot evangelist”, an activity frowned upon by the government. He was arrested and sentenced to eighteen years of hard labor. He was assigned to working in the prison cesspool, where he spent his days knee-deep in human waste, turning it which a shovel to make compost. “They thought I’d be miserable, but actually I was happy,” said Chen. “It smelled so bad that no one could come near me, so I could pray and sing aloud all day.”


What is the worst circumstances you have ever encountered? Probably nothing like shoveling human waste with a shovel. Whatever it is can become used as a prayer closet.

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