I’ve seen that several bloggers are participating in a 31 Days series hosted by Nesting Place. The basic idea is to choose a topic that you write about each day of October. I thought, “Hmm, that sounds interesting…but what in the world would I write about?” Then it hit me this morning: I love to read missionary biographies or stories: when I first started my blog I did a series for a few weeks on different missionary stories or anecdotes, and I have been doing the same in a church ladies’ newsletter for years. What a great opportunity to share some of those here! Some times it will be an overview of a person’s life: some times it will be just one incident or anecdote.
Why missionary stories? Because it increases my faith to see men and women “of like passions as we are” who learn, grow, overcome, and are used by God. I wrote more about reading missionary biographies before, and an excerpt from that is:
We learn history for a number of reasons, among them: to better understand our current times, to appreciate our heritage, to avoid repeating mistakes. There are heroes in our national history who inspire us to a love of country and duty and courage. There are heroes of our spiritual heritage who inspire us in love and dedication to God and to greater faith in remembering that the God they served and loved and Who provided for and used them is the very same God we love and serve today and Who will provide for us and use us. Though times and culture change, human nature at its core doesn’t change much, and God never changes.
This poem, which I first saw in Rosalind Goforth’s book, Climbing, embodies my own thoughts and feelings as well.
If you have gone a little way ahead of me, call back-
It will cheer my heart and help my feet along the stony track;
And if, perchance, Faith’s light is dim, because the oil is low,
Your call will guide my lagging course as wearily I go.
Call back, and tell me that He went with you into the storm;
Call back, and say He kept you when forest’s roots were torn;
That when the heavens thunder and the earthquake shook the hill.
He bore you up and held where the very air was still.
O friend, call back, and tell me for I cannot see your face;
They say it glows with triumph, and your feet bound in the race;
But there are mists between us and my spirit eyes are dim,
And I cannot see the glory, though I long for word of Him.
But if you’ll say He heard you when your prayer was but a cry,
And if you’ll say He saw you through the night’s sin-darkened sky-
If you have gone a little way ahead, O friend, call back-
It will cheer my heart and help my feet along the stony track.
I hope you’ll join me as we look to those who have gone on before us and learn from them.
I’ll be using this post as a directory to list the posts in the series.
Day 1: This post
Day 2: Rosalind Goforth; Answer to a Mother’s Prayer.
Day 3: Adoniram Judson’s Conversion.
Day 4: Adoniram Judson’s biography: To the Golden Shore.
Day 5: John Paton, Missionary to Cannibals.
Day 6: Darlene Deibler Rose: Missionary POW.
Day 7: Gracia Burnham and God’s Grace in Captivity.
Day 8: Isobel Kuhn Learns to Put God First.
Day 9: Isobel Kuhn’s Marriage: Whom God Hath Joined.
Day 10: Don Richardson: How to minister to a culture that values treachery?
Day 11: Amy Carmichael: With All Our Feebleness: Victory Through Pain and Illness.
Day 12: Amy Carmichael Learns to Die to Self.
Day 13: Amy Carmichael and Singleness.
Day 14: Gladys Aylward: The Small Woman With Big Faith.
Day 15: Mary Slessor and the Power of a Woman’s God.
Day 16: Spirit of the Rainforest: A Yanomamo Shaman’s Story
Day 17: Eric Liddell: Olympian and Missionary.
Day 18: Dr. John Dreisbach: Modern Missionary Statesman and Surgeon.
Day 19: The “Cambridge Seven”
Day 20: William Carey: “Attempt great things for God. Expect great things from God.”
Day 21: Rosalind Goforth, A Woman “Of Like Passions” As We Are.
Day 22: J. O. Fraser: Pianist and Engineer Turned Missionary.
Day 23: Dallas and Kay Washer, Candles in the Darkness.
Day 24: Margaret Stringer: Missionary to Cannibals With a Merry Heart and a Faithful Spirit.
Day 25: Clint and Rita Vernoy: On Ethnocide and Raising Children in the Jungle.
Day 26: Verda Peet: Sometimes I Prefer to Fuss.
Day 27: Jim Elliot’s Journals.
Day 28: Hudson Taylor, Pioneer Missionary.
Day 29: Not Only Preachers Are Called To Be Missionaries.
Day 30: Different ways to support and encourage missionaries.
Day 31: Thoughts on pedestals and missionary biographies with a list of my favorites.
You can see what other people are writing about for this 31 day challenge here: there are nine different categories.
(Photo courtesy of MorgueFile)