Monday, January 16, 2017

Jonathan Goforth-The Main Tent Support Snapped

By Mary Vee
Year: fall 1890
Jonathan Goforth-31 years old

Jonathan Goforth's Journal

Photo Courtesy
My name is Jonathan Goforth. My wife, Rosalind and I are missionaries in China. 

Donald, one of the other missionary men, and I had set out to visit the villages and cities in the area assigned to us by the mission committee.

We mostly wanted to show we were friendly to the people who lived there and see if there was a church. We wore the same clothing as the local people and tried our best to walk and talk like the locals. 

The Chinese people were fearful of all foreigners who came to their villages. To defend themselves they threw rocks, yelled, and ran foreign devils out of the town before a word could be spoken. This made visiting a bit challenging.

One day as we walked the countryside we saw a village in the distance. We walked along the road the way we saw the Chinese. We spoke to each other in Chinese. We were very careful to fit in.

In the middle of the village was a big tent, like a circus tent. The signs indicated some performance was going on. The rest of the village seemed empty, but the tent was very crowded. 

We walked close to see the performance, making sure to stand in the back row.

And then things went bad.

A Chinese woman happened to turn. She looked at our faces and screamed, "Foreign Devils. Foreign Devils!" 

All the people in hearing range turned toward us. The panic in their faces scared me. I yanked Donald's arm and said in Chinese, "Let's get out of here."

We ran for our lives. 

Rocks pelted my back and heals. The crowd shouted words that weren't nice. They didn't even know us.

A loud crack sounded. 

Rocks stopped hitting us.

The crowd's voices turned away from us.

I turned. The main support for the tent had cracked and broken in two, collapsing heavy fabric onto the people still inside. The people screamed and ran to pull men and women out of the tent.

They had forgotten all about us.

It may seem like we should have gone back to help, but in truth, we knew the people didn't want us to offer.

It took us about eighteen months to visit every village and city in the Honan region. God protected us every step of the way. 

So, it seemed time to set up a mission in Honan.

Jonathan has 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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