Gypsy Smith & The Spirit of Remembrance (1)

“But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.” ~ John 14:26

The following is a blurb from the life of evangelist, Gypsy Smith (1860-1947). It is an account of how his mother was saved. Note that in this account, while Smith’s father explains things about the Gospel to her, I do not think that at this point he himself was saved. I will have to double-check. Anyway, the excerpt is taken from Chapter 2, My Mother found in his biography which is online at Gypsy Smith, His Life and & Work.

Mother knew she was dying. Our hands were stretched out to hold her, but they were not strong enough. Other hands, omnipotent and eternal, were taking her from us. Father seemed to realise, too, that she was going. He sat beside her one day and asked her if she thought of God. For the poor gipsies believe in God, and believe that He is good and merciful. And she said, “Yes.”

“Do you try to pray, my dear?”

“Yes, I am trying, and while I am trying to pray it seems as though a black hand comes before me and shows me all that I have done, and something whispers, ‘There is no mercy for you!'”

But my father had great assurance that God would forgive her, and told her about Christ and asked her to look to Him. He died for sinners. He was her Saviour. My father had some time before been in prison for three months on a false charge, and it was there that he had been told what now he tried to teach my mother. After my father had told her all he knew of the Gospel she threw her arms around his neck and kissed him. Then he went outside, stood behind the waggon, and wept bitterly. When he went back again to see her she looked calmly into his face, and said with a smile: “I want you to promise me one thing. Will you be a good father to my children?” He promised her that he would; at that moment he would have promised her anything. Again he went outside and wept, and while he was weeping he heard her sing –

“I have a Father in the promised land.

My God calls me, I must go

To meet Him in the promised land.”

My father went back to her and said: “Polly, my dear, where did you learn that song?”

She said: “Cornelius, I heard it when I was a little girl. One Sunday my father’s tents were pitched on a village green, and seeing the young people and others going into a little school or church or chapel – I do not know which it was – I followed them in and they sang those words.”

It must have been twenty years or so since my mother had heard the lines. Although she had forgotten them all these years, they came back to her in her moments of intense seeking after God and His salvation. She could not read the Bible, she had never been taught about God and His Son, but these words came back to her in her dying moments and she sang them again and again. Turning to my father, she said, “I am not afraid to die now. I feel that it will be all right. I feel assured that God will take care of my children.