William Carey was a man on a mission. He and his wife, Dorothy, started life together as shoe makers in the obscure village of Paulepury, England. He worked hard and was diligent in ministry, study, and preparation to be a missionary to India. In the late 1700s, they finally set sail to India in pursuit of their life theme, “Expect great things from God; attempt great things for God!”.
William was met with seven years of serious financial difficulties, the death of a child, the serious illness of his wife, as well as contracting malaria himself … hardly the description of success. It seemed as though he was walking “through the valley of the shadow of death.” Continuing on made no sense at all. The weight and stress of it all would have been enough to derail many, but not this man on a mission.
Like the Careys, some things you may experience this week might not make sense. Financial lack, family tensions, a sick family member—the stress and weight might seem to be too much. It will be hard to remain faithful, unless you are a man or woman passionate for our God, and His mission. If you are walking in the valley this week, I want you to know you have a host of wonderful Foursquare missionaries and pastors around the world praying for you. They are praying:
- That in difficulty, His presence is promised and near as we invite the Holy Spirit to fill, flow, and quench our thirst.
- That His rod and staff comfort us, as we allow His strong Shepherd’s hands to hold, soothe and strengthen us.
- That His mission and calling for our lives not be obscured by shadows, but we would hear the Shepherd’s tender voice giving comfort and direction, guiding us through the many distractions and deceptions around us.
After remaining faithful through 41 years of enormous challenges, William and Dorothy served and led in the translation of the whole Bible into seven languages (and parts into 209 languages!), in social reform of issues such as infanticide, and in the establishment of a college and seminary which are still training leaders to this day.
The result was that they changed the history of missions and the church. Just as they did, let’s together “Expect great things from God, and attempt great things for God!.”
“Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.” (Psalm 23:4)