I would like to share with you the story of a remarkable young man who died tragically last week.
Zac Young was a 19-year-old passionate follower of Jesus, who this year was completing an internship with Youth for Christ.
There was no doubt, God was using this young man powerfully. He shared his faith everywhere he went, demonstrating the radical love of Jesus and helping others find faith. He had a genuine gift of evangelism, coupled with a bold yet authentic lifestyle. His goal was to reach millions around the world for Jesus.
How could God allow someone so devoted to Him to die so young?
And then, on November 30, while on a surf trip with three mates, Zac became the victim of a fatal shark attack.
All this information makes his sudden death all the more difficult to comprehend.
How could God allow someone so devoted to Him to die so young? Some will choose to say Zac’s death merely reveals the illusion of faith for what it is, a foolish hope. But to deny God, would be to deny Zac’s life, what he lived for and the fruit of his faith. In fact, Zac’s life revealed Jesus to anyone who cared to see it.
Zac knew that the true Christian life is not a calling to comfort, security and protection but a calling to lay down ones life in response to the love of God.
And God’s fingerprints were all over Zac’s story.
Stuck in a downward spiral of drug and alcohol addiction, Zac sought God resulting in a transformational encounter. He then felt called to start a bible study at his school, a big step for him at the time.
Zac stepped out with bold faith and courage and began leading a bible study at his school. This small act of obedience took Zac’s relationship with Jesus to a new level, and the fruit followed. Through the next 18 months Zac brought numerous people to Jesus, he prayed for healings and witnessed healings, he challenged, encouraged and inspired everyone around him.
Zac’s life revealed Jesus to anyone who cared to see it.
He wasn’t perfect but he was authentic.
I once went for a short drive with Zac. As he drove, he wondered out-loud if the young couple driving in front of him knew Jesus and he prayed that they would know His life transforming love.
When he was attacked, the three mates who were with him, as young as 14, came to his aid. Zac reportedly told them he loved them, and then prayed for their protection before losing consciousness.
This was a faith built on solid rock.
Zac’s life continues to impact people. In the past week, in his community and beyond, we’ve seen a number of young people commit their lives to Jesus as a result of Zac’s life.
Zac only had two years on earth as a Christian. It is my hope, as I know it would be Zac’s that his story does not leave you in despair but that it would inspire you to surrender everything to Jesus and allow Him to use you to impact this world.
To make every moment count.
In his own words
Zac Young was a 19 year old passionate follower of Jesus undertaking an internship with Youth for Christ when he was tragically killed by a shark attack off NSW on 30th November 2013.
This video was recorded 3-months prior to his death. In it Zac talks about his journey to becoming a Christian and about a bible study he launched at his school. This small act of obedience took Zac’s relationship with Jesus to a new level, and the fruit followed. Through the next 18 months Zac brought numerous people to Jesus, he prayed for healings and witnessed healings he constantly challenged, encouraged and inspired those around him.
His story continues to inspire…