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Circus Acrobat Zealous for Christ

Circus Acrobat Zealous for Christ

JANUARY  11,  2021    |    2.5  MINUTE  READ

For those who have a heart to take the Gospel to those who haven’t yet heard it, sometimes it may seem like the only option is to abandon other occupations and focus solely on evangelism. We know, however, that God has given each of us unique passions and gifts that He wants to use to draw others to Him. In this article, which was originally published in a 1950 edition of The Call to Prayer, we are reminded that God calls some of us to do missions work while in an occupation that we might consider “non-traditional ministry.” He calls some of us to be nurses, some to be teachers, and yes, some even to be circus acrobats. This article has been adapted for the blog.

Fan, a circus acrobat, left his home in Shantung in north China many years ago, when he was just a teenager. With him were his father and some other relatives. They attached themselves to various circuses that took them as far as Africa.

Eight years ago, Fan began to hunger for a knowledge of something, or someone. He was then located in Egypt, and someone in Cairo told him to go to a Bible society and get a Bible, which would show him the way to life eternal. Later he procured a Bible in Jerusalem. Here and there along his journey he had been learning things about Jesus. But now, owning a Bible, he made the momentous discovery that Jesus Christ was his Savior.

The Spirit of God uses the humblest believer to introduce his companions to the Savior.

Two years ago, Fan’s work brought him to Calcutta, where he learned more about the Christian way and was baptized as a Christian.

I met him three months ago in a testimony meeting. He rose and in his Shantung dialect related how the Lord was working for him. In his acrobatic troupe, which is performing some hundreds of miles in the interior of India, there are fifteen Chinese. Since the Lord has saved him, twelve others of the troupe have accepted Christ. Fan is their leader and gathers them for prayer and Scripture reading each week. What a sight that must be! Thirteen acrobats meeting in their tent to worship God thousands of miles from their homeland!

The day after the testimony meeting, Fan left Calcutta to join his troupe. His visits to the city are rare, but apparently when he comes, he spends a great deal of time with the small Christian group.

Acquaintance with this man impresses us with these thoughts:

  • Within man there is a hunger to find reality.
  • The Word of the Lord is the light that Heaven uses to lead souls to salvation.
  • Christ can save and keep a man in any environment.
  • The Spirit of God uses the humblest believer to introduce his companions to the Savior.

We thank God that the Holy Spirit is working in men’s hearts, even in the strangest ways and in the strangest places. If we are true in our witness, we can believe that God will work and that men will be called out of sin and into His service. Our witness and prayer may not be appreciated or recorded in human annals, but, as God is true, it will, like “bread cast upon the waters,” be found after many days (Ecclesiastes 1:11, author paraphrase). It is our duty to be true in witness and prayer.


PRAY: Think about those in your life who feel unfulfilled by their current circumstances. Pray that God would use them right where they are—or lead them where they should be—to reach others for Him.

GO: What has God made you good at? How might you use that as ministry? If you’re not sure what that could look like, we’d love a chance to help! Connect with someone on our team at

Author Bio: Rev. William Smith and his wife, Evangeline, spent more than forty years serving across Asia—with WGM and other organizations—in countries including China, Taiwan, and India, among many others.

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