The Fragrance Of Christ
When I was saved, during a mighty movement of the Spirit of God in Glasgow, Scotland, a young lady was also saved. Her name was Helen Ewan. She was just a slip of a girl, but at the very threshold of her new life in Christ, she crowned Him as absolute Lord, and was filled with the Spirit – a definite experience.
The rivers of living water simply flowed from that young girl’s life (John 7:37-39). When she died at the age of 22, all Scotland wept. I know hundreds of missionaries all over the world wept and mourned for her.
She had mastered the Russian language and was expecting to labor for God in Europe. She had no outstanding personality; she never wrote a book, nor composed a hymn; she was not a preacher, and never traveled more than 200 miles from her home. But when she died, people wrote about her life story. Although she died so early in life, she had led a great multitude to Jesus Christ.
She arose early each morning about 5 o’clock to study God’s Word, to commune, and to pray. She prayed for hundreds of missionaries. Her mother showed me her diary – one of her diaries – and there were at least 300 different missionaries for whom she was praying. It showed how God had burdened that young heart with a ministry of prayer. She had the date when she started to pray for a request and then the date when God answered her petition. She had a dynamic prayer life that moved God and moved man.
I was talking one day with two university professors in London City. We were talking about dynamic Christianity, when one of them suddenly said, "Brother Stewart, I want to tell you a story." And he told me that in Glasgow University there was a remarkable young lady, who, wherever she went on that campus, left a fragrance of Christ behind her.
For example, if the students were telling dirty stories, someone would say, "Shhh! – Helen is coming – quiet." And then she passed by and unconsciously left the power behind her. The university professor told me how in their prayer meetings they could always tell when this young lady entered the room. She did not even need to take part in the prayers. The moment she entered the room the whole of the meeting was revolutionized by the mighty power of God.
"And," said that professor, "she led many of those students to Jesus Christ." She was the greatest power for God that he ever knew in his life.
I said, "Sir, that could only be one person. That was Helen Ewan." He said that was the name of the young lady.
I have been out on the streets of Glasgow at midnight, in the awful cold winter night, giving out my tracts and doing personal soul winning, and as I have been going home, I have seen Helen Ewan with her arms around a poor, drunken harlot, and telling her of Jesus and His love.
Friends, she led a great multitude to Jesus Christ. And when I went many years later to the place of her burial, one of the grave diggers said, "Preacher, I’ll never forget when that young lady was buried here. When I was burying that body, I felt the presence of God all over this place."
One night we were all having a special evening together, young people rejoicing in the Lord, and having a good time, when my wife said, "Is that Helen Ewan’s photograph on the mantelpiece?"
Suddenly there was a dead silence, and she said, "Jim, have I said anything wrong?" All the laughing ceased, and one by one, without anybody saying a word, we dropped down on our knees and began to pray. Think of it, years after she had gone home to Heaven, her name was so powerful. Oh, friends, I believe that this spiritual life is for every child of God!
"Be filled with the Spirit" (Eph. 5:18).