Monday, June 27, 2016

Jonathan Goforth-Reading and Riding

By Mary Vee
Year: February 1864
Jonathan Goforth


Jonathan Goforth's Journal





Photo Courtesy
My name is Jonathan Goforth. God called me to be a missionary to China, and I went. But before I went...

My parents moved from Yorkshire, England to Ontario, Canada. The pioneer life really suited them. Farms. Small communities. Huge family. Yep. That was us.

I was the seventh child born of the eleven children in our family. I'm kinda surprised they didn't go for an even dozen.

My dad worked two large farms. He was up before the sunrise and home by dark. I knew he worked hard. I just wish he had more time for us.

Mom took care of the house, meals, laundry. All of those details. She also made sure we kids read from the Good Book. I mostly listen as a young child and hadn't realized all I had learned from my older brothers. Before I started school I read a Psalm to the family. This didn't make me smart. Just kid number seven.

I loved to hang out with my uncle Tom. As a five-year-old, I fit in tiny places. One day, Uncle Tom invited me to go with him to Market. The wagon was loaded down with grain and ready to go. He squeezed me between two bags of grain, pointed his finger at me and said, "Stay there."

So I did.

Sitting on top of the grain sacks gave me a good view of the countryside. The five mile trip with a heavy wagon took the horses a long time to travel. I waved at a few people I knew then grabbed on to a sack of grain, as best as I could with small hands, to keep from tumbling over.

Several hard rains had chiseled deep ruts in the dirt roads. I must admit, the rocky ride was great fun. We bobbled right and left, up and down. I waved my hat in the air and laughed. 

That is, until a huge hole sucked the wagon wheel and wouldn't let go. The wagon jolted like a horse in a rodeo. Even though I held on with all my strength, I flew from my safe place right out of the cart and between the front and back wheels.

The horses neighed and yanked the cart free, bringing the back wheel straight for me. Uncle Tom leaned over with his large hands and grabbed a hold of my shirt. The wheel slammed against my hip as he pulled then lost leverage. He pulled again, yanking me free from that wheel. 

In another instant, my hip would have been powder. Uncle Tom let go of me and tugged on the reins. "Hold up. Hold up there I say." The horses had been spooked pretty bad and needed a little time to calm down.

Now that I look back on that day, I see God took care of me. The job He had in mind for me needed someone who could walk. So even though I was thrown from the cart, God kept me safe and helped Uncle Tom to rescue me.

I have many stories to share. Come back each Monday to find out what happened next.



Resources Used for This Series
Being, Janet, and Geoff Benge. Jonathan Goforth: An Open Door in China. Seattle. WA: YWAM Pub., 2001.Print
Doyle, G. Wright. Builders of the Chinese Church: Pioneer Protestant Missionaries and Chinese Church Leaders. Eugene Oregon: Pickwick Pub, 2015. Print.
Goforth, Jonathan, and Rosaline Goforth, Miracle Lives of China, London" Marshall, Morgan & Scott, 1931, Print.
Goforth, Jonathan. "By My Spirit" Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1942. Print
Goforth, Rosalind. Climbing; Memories of a Missionary's Wife. Chicago: Moody Pub, n.d. Print
Goforth, Rosalind, How I Know God Answers Prayers; The Personal Testimony of One Life-time, New York: Harper & Brothers, 1921. Print
Goforth, Rosalind. Jonathan Goforth. Minneapolis, MN: Bethan House, 1986. Print
Goforth, Rosalind, How God Answers Prayer: The Mighty Miracles of God from the Mission Field of Jonathan Goforth. USA: Revival, 2016. Print Original copyright not stated.
Jackson, Dave, and Neta Jackson. Mask of the Wolf Boy: Minneapolis, MN: Bethany House, 1999. Print.
McCleary, Walter. An Hour with Jonathan Goforth: A Biography. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 1938. Print.
Meloche, Renee Taft., and Bryan Pollard. Jonathan Goforth: Never Give up. Seattle, WA: YWAM, 2004. Print.

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