|photo courtesy of visualbiblealive.com|
Jeannie clanked dishes in the kitchen. I'd better wake earlier from now on to be the helper she wanted.
Jeannie made a bowl of boiled dough strings and vegetables for me. "Today you'll clean the courtyard, I'll work inside. As soon as repairs are finished, we'll open the inn and tell our guests about Jesus. I've hired Yang to cook. We need to work quickly. Many people have never heard about Jesus."
My body ached from the two day mule ride through the mountains. I didn't want her to know. She might decide to send me back to England. After Jeannie's husband died she decided to stay in China to serve God. She rented this old inn at a cheap price. Before long God gave her the idea to open the inn then tell her guests about Jesus.
We worked hard every day with few breaks. I don't know how she kept up with the busy schedule. Yang taught me Chinese, ordered supplies, cooked meals, and helped with repairs.
During one of my lessons, Yang took me to the market. Even though I had black hair and was short like the people in Yangcheng, they stared, threw mud, and called me a foreign devil. I ran back to the inn, crying to Jeannie about what had happened.
"Gladys, these people have never seen a foreign person. It will take time to earn their trust."
Before I could speak many Chinese words, we'd finished the work. The next day Jeannie reviewed our jobs. "Gladys, you'll stand outside the gate and pull in the first mule of each mule train. Yang will teach you what to say."
He taught me this simple phrase: "We have no bugs. We have no fleas. Good, good, good. Come, come, come." It took me the entire morning to say the words without help.
I went to the gate and waited. Soon a muleteer came. He glanced at the inn then rode past. After two more muleteers refused to enter, I grabbed the head of the next mule and pulled it into the courtyard while saying the words Yang taught me.
The owner of the mule looked at me, screamed, and ran away. His partner stayed with the mules in our courtyard. Soon the owner returned to the inn. He peeked inside and found his partner and the mules safe. He came inside where Jeannie told Bible stories, for free.
I can't wait to tell you about Yangcheng. See you next week.
(since photos of Glady's life are difficult to find, photos of China's countryside will be used. These free photos are available at http://www.visualbiblealive.com/ )