Harper Collins announced with great sorrow the passing of Sarah Young, author of Jesus Calling devotionals series. With deep reverence and heartfelt appreciation, President and CEO Mark Schoenwald expressed how Sarah’s profound connection with God resonated with people from all walks of life, leaving an unparalleled global impact through her work.
A Lasting Impact: The Jesus Calling Phenomenon
Sarah Young’s ‘Jesus Calling’ series has left an indelible mark on the world, having sold over 45 million copies in 35 languages. Originating in 2004 with ‘Jesus Calling: Enjoying Peace in His Presence’, this 365-day devotional has become a cornerstone of spiritual enrichment. Written in the unique style of personal reflections from Jesus to the reader, the devotional’s origins in Sarah’s prayer journals exemplify her commitment to fostering a deeper connection with both Jesus and the Bible.
Diversification of Faith: Expanding the Jesus Calling Brand
The ‘Jesus Calling’ brand evolved over time, embracing children’s devotionals, Bible storybooks, podcasts, and a mobile app. Laura Minchew, Senior Vice President of HarperCollins, extols how the brand transformed lives across generations. From aiding individuals in their darkest moments to enlightening young minds about Jesus, the brand has achieved an enduring impact that transcends time.
Journey of Faith: Sarah Young’s Spiritual Path
Sarah Young’s spiritual journey began with her studies in philosophy and her encounter with Francis Schaeffer’s work. The turning point arrived with her immersion in the Christian community of L’Abri Fellowship in France, where she found her faith. This paved the way for her pursuit of Biblical Studies and Counselling, leading to her meeting with Stephen Young, her future husband. Their missionary work in Japan further enriched their shared spiritual journey.
From Nashville to Global Success: The Making of ‘Jesus Calling’
Sarah and Stephen’s move to Australia marked the beginning of an impactful journey. Sarah’s decision to revisit and revise her personal devotional journals, which culminated in ‘Jesus Calling’, was a pivotal moment. Despite criticism of the unique writing format, where Sarah presented her reflections in the voice of Jesus, the devotionals became unexpected bestsellers, demonstrating their profound influence on readers.
A Silent Prayer Warrior: Sarah’s Lifelong Dedication
Sarah’s commitment to praying daily for the readers of ‘Jesus Calling’ was a testament to her deep faith and sense of responsibility. Amid health struggles, including Lyme disease and cancer battles, she continued to dedicate time every morning for these prayers. Her quiet determination to stay out of the spotlight, coupled with her rare interviews, showcased her humility and unwavering focus on her ministry.
A Legacy Beyond Words: Sarah’s Enduring Impact
While ‘Jesus Calling’ achieved remarkable commercial success, it was never about sales for Sarah. Michael Aulisio, Vice President and Publisher of the Jesus Calling brand, emphasizes that her true aim was to lead readers into deeper relationships with God. Sarah’s profound influence defies measurement, and her words will forever shape spiritual journeys and draw individuals closer to their faith.
A Fond Farewell: Sarah Young’s Enduring Legacy
As we remember Sarah Young, her legacy will live on through her husband, two children, and six grandchildren. Sarah Young’s work ‘Jesus Calling’ will continue to touch lives worldwide and provide comfort, guidance, and an intimate communion with God. Sarah’s remarkable journey from Nashville to becoming a beacon of faith underscores her enduring impact on countless lives, leaving an indelible mark on the world of Christian devotionals.
Sarah Young’s passing marks the end of a remarkable journey that began with a young woman’s quest for faith and understanding. Her devotionals have provided millions of people worldwide with strength, solace and spiritual connection through Sarah’s words of faith. Reflecting back on her life and legacy reveals Sarah’s influence extends far beyond words – it speaks volumes to faith’s transformative power as well as to its lasting legacy in our world today.