One of my favourite authors, Warren Wiersbe, wrote this illustration in his newsletter, Prokope. It goes something like this, “Britain’s King George V was to give the opening address at a special disarmament conference, with the speech relayed by radio to the U.S. As the broadcast was about to begin, a cable broke in the New York radio station, and more than a million listeners were left without sound. A junior mechanic in the station, Harold Vivien, solved the problem by picking up both ends of the cable and allowing 250 volts of electricity to pass through him. He was the living link that allowed the king’s message to get through.”
Wow! What unbelievable dedication and commitment of this man. I almost couldn’t believe it so I went and did a bit more digging on Saturday night and came across this news article from The Huntsville Daily Times, January 21st 1930. The journalist writes, “His arms twitching with shocks from electric current, Harold Vivian, a young radio engineer, literally spliced with his body a broken link in the vast hookup and made it possible to listeners in on 59 North American radio stations to hear King George’s speech today…”
“…Vivian, chief control operator, grasped the wires together in his hands to restore the circuit. Leakage of current through his body to the floor shook his arms with spasms, but he held on without a break for 20 minutes until new wires could be connected.”
The king’s message got through; whatever it took! That’s how we get to impact the world“
The Early Church was characterised by zeal for the message, “Christ died, Christ rose again and repent for the forgiveness of sins.” Nothing could hold them back, not persecution, not suffering, not even death.
Because of this constant bold proclamation of the Gospel to a world that stands in wilful opposition to it they faced hardships and persecution but they were unperturbed. They pressed on still harder because they knew they were the link between the king and the people, the chosen conduit by which our glorious Lord and Saviour chooses to make the message of the Kingdom known. They literally stood in the gap and picked up the cable.
Not so much us today. We’re apathetic with the proclamation of Gospel. We’re negligent in the study of the Word. We’re like uncommitted bystanders who expect others to do the heavy lifting. We’re no longer bold with the king’s message. Our impact is negated by our lethargy, our witness repressed by our slough.