Experiencing God

My Connection Group with the church is going through a course called “Experiencing God.” Part of our study this week had us go back and review some of what we had been learning from previous weeks. Throughout the course, Blackaby (the author) recounts stories of Christian missionaries and some of the things they have said and done as they have responded to God’s work in their lives. Below are a couple that I really resonate with:

Oswald Smith (missionary to Canada) – “I want Thy plan, O God, for my life. May I be happy and contented whether in the homeland or on the foreign field; whether married or alone, in happiness or sorrow, health or sickness, prosperity or adversity-I want Thy plan, O God, for my life. I want it; oh, I want it!”

And, forgive the length of the text below, but it is worth it to me:

Hudson Taylor, a great man of prayer and faith, responded to God’s call to go to China as a missionary. Because his father had already died, he had to leave his widowed mother to go to China. By the end of his life in 1905, he had been used by God to found the China Inland Mission…Hudson Taylor described something of the cost he and his mother experienced as he obeyed God’s will to go to China as a missionary:

“My beloved now sainted, mother had come to see me off from Liverpool. Never shall I forget that day, nor how she went with me into that little cabin that was to be my home for nearly six months. With a mother’s loving had sho smoothed the little bed. She sat by my side, and joined me in the last hymn that we should sing together before the long parting. We knelt down, and she prayed-the last mother’s prayer I was to hear before starting to China. Then notice was given that we must separate, and we had to say good-bye, never expecting to meet on earth again.”

“For my sake she restrained her feelings as much as possible. We parted; and she went on shore, giving me her blessing! I stood alone on deck, and she followed the ship as moved towards the dock gates. As we passed through the gates, and the separation really commenced, I shall never forget the cry of anguish wrung from my mother’s heart. It went through me like a knife. I never really knew so fully, until then, what “God so loved the world” meant. And I am quite sure that my precious mother learned more of the love of God to the perishing in that hour
than in all her life before.”

Following after God and responding to God’s call on our lives can be costly to us and to others around us. I am so encouraged by these men of faith mentioned above (and a mother’s faith). Following after God and truly wanting to live for His will is worth every sacrifice. I can only hope that I am truly up to such a task.

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About mikewindley

Mike Windley is Lead Pastor of The Bridge Community Church in Morrisville, NC.
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