JRF’s #35 – Deny Yourself by Steve Gallagher

I was given this short book(let?) at last years’ Desiring God Conference, Finish the Mission.

It is a collection of 20 short biographical excerpts ranging from the early church to the 20th Century that highlight extraordinary examples of Christian missionary faithfulness, even faithfulness unto death.  We have been reading a chapter every saturday morning as a family.  It has been convicting and steeling to be reminded of the faithfulness of those who truly understood the value of the Gospel for themselves and for the lost, and literally loved those trapped in darkness to death.

When missionary to China, Jack Vinson was asked by his executioner, “I am going to kill you.  Aren’t you afraid?”  Vinson simply replied, “Kill me, if you wish.  I will go straight to God.”  Inspired by Vinson’s sacrifice Presbyterian minister wrote a poem entitled “Afraid? Of What?” that went on to become the theme of all missionaries in China during that period.

Afraid?  Of What?

To feel the Spirit’s glad release?  To pass from pain to perfect peace, 

 The strife and strain of life to cease? Afraid – of that?

Afraid? Of What?

Afraid to see the Savior’s face, To hear His welcome, and to trace

The glory gleam from wounds of grace?  Afraid – of that?

Afraid? Of What? 

A flash, a crash, a pierced heart; Darkness, light, O Heaven’s art!

A wound of His a counterpart! Afraid – of that?

Afraid? Of What?

To do by death what life could not – Baptize with blood a stony plot, 

Till souls shall blossom from the spot? Afraid – of that?

About JRF 145 Articles
A broken sinner saved by the gracious work of Jesus Christ. Husband to the greatest woman of all time. Seriously. Father of 2-4 children (we're in the process of adoption). Navy chaplain. I enjoy surfing, SCUBA, basketball, and exploring. I also like to read and write and want to get better at both.

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