Monday, April 16, 2012

Hudson Taylor-The Ship Worker's Promise

By Mary Vee

Hudson Taylor's Thoughts

God has shown me twice He would provide for my needs. That I could trust Him.

But before I left for China, I still wanted to know if God would provide all my needs without my asking anyone other than Him for food, a bed, and the strength to do His will.

One day I received a letter from my father offering to pay all my housing costs in London while I attended medical school. He really didn't have any extra money to give, but he wanted to help. A day or so later I received a letter from the Committee of Chinese Evangelism Society. They too wanted to help pay my living expenses while I went medical school.

What a wonderful surprise. 

I wrote my father and the committee back and told each one I would pray about their gift. In my father's note I told him about the committee's idea, and I did the same for the committee. 

I prayed for a couple of days, wanting to make sure my decision would be exactly what God had in mind.

During the prayer, it occurred to me, by turning down both gifts I would have to trust God to supply whatever I needed. The more I prayed, the more I knew this was what God wanted me to do.

I wrote my father, thanking him for his gift, but God had not led me to accept his help. And then I wrote the committee and told them the same message. Each would think I had accepted the other's gift. Neither would know I had put my needs completely in God's care. And neither would feel bad that I didn't have any way to support myself other than trusting in God.

In my heart, I understood God wanted to show me He would always take care of me in China.

I didn't receive a large amount of money in an envelope or in any other mysterious way. Life became a struggle. Many days I had no food.

My cousin shared an apartment with me. The money he paid for rent helped me to buy some food and pay rent. I also learned to survive with little food, mostly bread, apples, and water and I walked the eight miles each day to get to my classes at the hospital. 

One day a woman in my apartment building asked me to pick up her husband's pay. Normally his pay would be put in the bank for him and a fee would be charged. By picking up the money the couple could save money. As a ship worker who needed to stay on board, he couldn't pick up the money. The woman knocked on my door one morning. "The landlady wants the rent today. I don't know what to do. My husband won't receive his pay until this afternoon." I gave her my food money knowing that after school I could pick up the money from the shipping clerk.

When I arrived to pick up the money the clerk told me the ship worker had run away to search for gold. Hmm, I thought. The lady would not be able to give me the money back for food and I won't have the allowance. Well, God. This will be a wonderful moment to see Your answer to this problem.

I walked away humming a song that came to mind. Not one worry popped in my mind. I knew, I simply knew God would take care of me. 

You'll have to come back next week to see what happened next.

J. Hudson Taylor

What questions do you have?

Photo courtesy of

Research resources: J. Hudson Taylor, An Autobiography by J. Hudson Taylor; It is Not Death to Die, a new biography of Hudson Taylor by Jim Cromarty; Hudson Taylor Founder, China Inland Mission by Vance Christie; J. Hudson Taylor, A Man in Christ, by Roger Steer, and Hudson Taylor's Spiritual Secret by dr. & Mrs. Howard Taylor.

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