Proverbs 24: 11,12 “Rescue those being led away to death; hold back those staggering toward slaughter. If you say, ‘But we knew nothing about this,’ does not he who weighs the heart perceive it? Does not he who guards your life know it? Will he not repay everyone according to what they have done?”
1 Timothy 6:17-19 “Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment. Command them to do good, to be rich in good deeds, and to be generous and willing to share. In this way they will lay up treasure for themselves as a firm foundation for the coming age, so that they may take hold of the life that is truly life.”
William Borden grew up at the turn of the last century as heir to the family fortune that included Borden Foods, a company that his grandfather founded just prior to the civil war. His grandfather had made a fortune selling condensed milk to the Union army and then selling processed milk to consumers. He then expanded his leadership role in the dairy industry when he pioneered the use of glass milk bottles in 1885, then evaporated milk in 1892, and going international by selling milk products into Canada in 1895.
This success provided William Borden’s early years to be years of privilege. He grew up at his family’s mansion on the famed Gold Coast of Chicago. He was set up for a life of fame and power. He was a handsome and extremely bright young man, and a gifted athlete. He attended Yale University and was elected president of Phi Beta Kappa and excelled in several collegiate sports, especially wrestling and crew. He also became the master of his own sailing yacht.
In 1906, the direction of his life took a turn that no one expected. William traveled to Nashville to attend a convention of the Student Volunteer Movement. It was there he heard a missionary statesman share about the Great Commission. It was the first time that he grappled with the gravity of millions never hearing about the saving love and power of Jesus. On his returning to Yale, he committed to a life of foreign missions. After graduating from Yale in 1909, Borden attended Princeton Theological Seminary, graduating in 1912.
Borden dedicated his life to reach the Uyghur people in western China, but on his way to China he contracted spinal meningitis in Cairo Egypt, and so he never reached his intended goal. On his death bed at the age of 25, he wrote a note and placed it under his pillow that read, “No Reserve, No Retreat, No Regrets.”
William Borden echoed what the Apostle Paul said in Philippians, “As for me, to live is Christ and to die is gain.” While we can never know the number of our days, we know that a life fully dedicated to Jesus is never lived in vain. We can never know what his life would have produced had he landed in Western China, but we do know that his bold declaration of “No Reserve, No Retreat, No Regrets,” has inspired hundreds of others to give more, not give up and leave the results of a fully dedicated life to God.
All for Jesus!
P.S. One of our key mBridge ministry partners is on the front lines in Ukraine. If you want to support someone who is not only supporting the refugee’s from the war with humanitarian assistance, but also someone who is sharing the love of Jesus, go to mbridge.global/donate and donate to Solid Rock. 100% of your donation will go directly to help those effected by the war in Ukraine.