The VIRUS That Changed Our Lives Forever: The Story of Arthur E. Gordon
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- Format: Folded Tract
- Size: 3.5 inches x 5.5 inches
- Pages: 6
- Version: KJV
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The full text of this tract is shown below in the KJV version. (Do you want to print this tract in a different version than the one listed? Contact us and let us know what you're looking for—we may be able to create the alternate version for you at no charge.)
During the 1940s and 1950s, polio would paralyze or kill over half a million people worldwide every year.
The Fear was Overwhelming!
My father was the young new pastor of a small Baptist Church in Williamsburg, Ohio in August 1955. Our happy family consisted of my Dad (31 years old), my Mom (32 years old), my two brothers (Jack 6 years old, Jim 3 years old) and myself (Joyce 2 years old).
One morning our lives turned upside down, never to be the same again. When my brother Jack woke up that day, he was unable to swallow and struggled breathing. My parents were horrified. Their worst fears were confirmed. He had polio.
Jim and I also contracted the virus. Jack and I ended up having to be admitted to the hospital and then to a convalescent home for several months. My dad was concerned that he might have the virus as well but was told by the doctors that he probably just had sympathetic symptoms because of his three children having the virus. But 10 days later he could not get out of bed. Some men from the church had to come to our home and carry my dad to the car and drive him to the hospital, where he was confirmed to have the disease as well. Four out of five of us had polio. My Mom was the only one in our immediate family to escape the virus. It seemed like a hopeless situation.
Dad ended up totally paralyzed from the neck down. He could not walk. He could not move anything but his head. And he couldn’t even breathe on his own.
Jack had issues with his legs and arms, his breathing and his swallowing. I couldn’t lift my arm, and they weren’t yet sure of the extent of the damage Jim might have.
But in his own words, here is what Dad decided to do:
“God’s purpose at first was not clear. I wondered what it all meant. Then one day a Scripture verse came to mind which I had learned long before.”
“Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct thy paths.” Proverbs 3:5-6
“I resolutely determined, then and there, to do what these verses enjoined. I began to trust the Lord for the present circumstances and ceased trying to understand the reasons.”
And Dad did just that. He used his disability to reach others with the Gospel of Christ. He was in the hospital for 13 months. It began in an iron lung, where he almost died when the power went off one day. Since he couldn’t breathe on his own, he lost consciousness and came very close to death before they were able to get the power back on. From that moment on, he was sure that God kept him alive for a purpose.
He began to take every opportunity to tell his nurses how Christ loved them enough to pay for their sins by shedding His blood on the Cross for them. Several accepted Christ as Savior as a result.
Encouraged by what God was doing, he decided to go a step further. He took a writing course while he was in the hospital, and a year after being released to go home, he began typing a monthly devotional paper, by holding a stick in his mouth. It was sent out to more than 5,000 people in the US and foreign countries. He named the paper TRIUMPH. The name was inspired by a verse from the Bible.
“Now thanks be unto God, which always causeth us to triumph in Christ, and maketh manifest the savour of His knowledge by us in every place.” 2 Corinthians 2:14
We don’t always understand why God allows things like this to happen in our lives, but He has a purpose. If you are facing fears and struggles in your life, trust in Christ. Lean on Him as my Dad did. God loves you and He wants to help you through every trial in life.
Dad continued sending out the TRIUMPH paper to encourage others until his death from cancer 26 years later in 1981. He is finally walking again, but now on the streets of gold with his Savior, Jesus Christ!
Written by Joyce Gordon Landis
Jesus Christ is our only Hope during Times of Crisis! So how can you accept God’s free gift of salvation and be assured of an eternal home in heaven? Simply accept His only Son, Jesus Christ, and His payment for your sin by His death on the cross and His resurrection from the grave.
Here is what the Bible says about it:
“The blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanseth us from all sin.” 1 John 1:7
“If thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised Him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.” Romans 10:9
“Whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.” Romans 10:13
“Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out.” Acts 3:19
God promises eternal life to all who believe on His Son, Jesus Christ, and call on Him for salvation.
“For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” John 3:16
Don’t Wait. Accept Him Today!!