Monday, February 11, 2013

Hudson Taylor-When God Speaks

By Mary Vee

From J.Hudson Taylor's Notes

**author's note: Very little is knowing about Hudson Taylor's eleventh missionary journey other than he went to Songjiang on January 29th and it lasted two weeks. This entry will start with the twelfth missionary journey.

photo courtesy of
My new partner, William Burns, and I planned to reorganize and restock the ship with literature and fresh medical supplies while back in Shanghai. We planned to return to Songjianga and continue our ministry there, until God changed our minds.

One night while still in Shanghai, Burns and I attended a prayer meeting at Dr. Medhurst's house. A Christian captain happened to attend as well. His ship had docked after arriving from Swatow. 

Captain Bowers told about the spiritual needs of the people living in the coastal city of Swatow located six hundred miles south of Shanghai. Five miles away on Double Island, British merchants sold drugs and traded slaves. He shook his head sadly, "There are no missionaries on the island."

He then looked at Burns and me and furrowed his brows, "If these foreign business people can live there, than missionaries can live there, too. It won't be an easy life for a missionary. The corruption is great."

As he told me about the island, nothing turned my thoughts away from wanting, desiring to go. God stirred in my heart a need to tell the people about His love. But the problem was I didn't want to break up my newly formed missionary team with William Burns. How can I tell him that I need to leave and go to Swatow?  I have no right to insist he go there, especially after we made plans to return to Songjiang.

A few nights later, I still felt the burden in my heart to go to Double Island. I attended a meeting at a friend's home. While there the wife sang a missionary song. It was as if the Lord spoke out loud to me. Go, Hudson. I made up my mind to tell Burns.

As I walked away from my friend's home I asked Burns if I could speak with him. I told him how God had spoken to me about going to Double Island. I was sorry that we would have to break up our team. I went on blubbering for a few more minutes and took a breath.

To my surprise, Burns was not upset in the least. "Taylor, old man." He laughed. "I was trying to figure out how to tell you that God clearly has led me to go to Double Island. I didn't want to force you to go."

We both laughed. God had spoken to each of us separately to do the same work! We went right away to speak with Captain Bowers and told him God led both of us to go to Double Island. Captain Bowers was so pleased, he offered us both free passage which would leave in a few days.

Imagine that! I love when I get to see God's plan work together.

Next time we sail for Double Island. Oh, and please do pray for financial help. The board has cut my salary again.

J. Hudson Taylor
Missionary to China

Do you have any questions?    

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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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