“Come up to our monastery- we’ve been waiting for you”, a Buddhist monk told Gladys and her escort. “We want to hear about the God that loves sinners.”
Gladys Aylward, missionary to China, had been traveling with a Chinese doctor to an unreached mountain village in a western province in China, on the border of Tibet. After eleven days in the wilderness, they had lost their way. Exhausted and afraid, they knelt to pray. Then, at Gladys’ suggestion, they began to sing. Their song was heard by some of the monks from the monastery on the hill up ahead, and so this monk had found Gladys and Dr. Huang, and was now inviting them to come up and stay a while to teach them.
Gladys was shocked. She knew these men lived in strict seclusion, and were never allow to speak to a woman. What made them so eager that they would disregard this rule, and how did they know that there was a God that loves sinners? The threesome ascended the hill to the monastery, and there met about 500 hundred more monks, all eager to hear of the God that loved sinners.
Later, one of them explained what had happened.
“Many years ago”, he said, “a man came by on horse back, and gave us this.” He motioned to the wall, where was tacked a piece paper worn and cracked after so many years, which had John 3:16 written on it. “All of us have read or listened to these words many times, and have committed them to memory. This was all the man brought, but from this alone we learned there was a God that loved sinners.
"For five years we sought to find where this God that loved sinners lived, but we found no information about this matter. Finally one of us made a vow that he would go and not return till he had learned more about this God. He with several others left travelled long through the mountains till they arrived in the small town of Len Chow. There they found a Christian evangelist, who told them as much as he could, and gave them each a copy of the Gospels. These they brought back to us, and together we read them.
“These words”, the monk continued, “we believe to be true. But there were many things we could not understand. One text was of great importance to us. At the end of mark’s gospel, Christ commanded His disciples to 'Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature'. We were sure that one day, one of those who had been given this command would come to tell us. We only needed to wait for them to come, and to be ready to listen when they did. when we heard your singing, we knew that you were the messengers we had been waiting for, and so we sent for you."
Gladys was too moved to speak. These men had been waiting, believing that those who knew this great God Who loves sinners, those who had tasted of His love and knew His grace, would be more than eager to be obedient to Him, and “Go into all the world, and preach the gospel…”
Our goal for the missions fair was to help us to remember to be praying for those who are still unreached with the Gospel and those who are trying to reach them, as well as to keep the Great Commission before us, so that we will be fulfilling our Lord’s command to “Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature”.
The fair starts with an international potluck dinner, featuring foods from all the countries represented. Each family brings an authentic (or nearly authentic) dish from the country they are focusing on.
This past missions fair was not only fun and educational, it was also an encouragement and a challenge to us all to be fulfilling the great Commission ourselves. We are thankful for the opportunity to put this on, and trust it was a blessing for all who came.
the 2015 Homeschool Missions Fair
will be on
February 20, at 6:00 pm
at The Family Vision Library
2020 Parkway Drive
St. Peters, MO 63376
To sign up, please send:
- Family names, children's ages
- Contact info (phone/email)
- Area of focus (country/people group)
- Oral presentation (yes/no)
After sign up, we will contact you with further detail as needed.
Hope to see you there! God bless!