Stories That Talk

I wonder why Larry Miley survived, and Eunice Glass didn’t.

Wiley and Eunice Glass were Southern Baptist missionaries in Hwanghsien, China, in the early years of the twentieth century. They lived in a two-story house in Hwanghsien, with bedrooms on the second floor, and a living room, dining room, and study below. There was no plumbing. Light was by kerosene lamp, water by well, transportation by pony.

Eunice gave birth to a beautiful little boy, but he grew ill and died. When another son died, she grew overanxious about Bently, their surviving son, and about their two young daughters. But it was Eunice herself who next fell ill. She had been soaked while crossing a bay, and Wiley took her to the mountains to recover. Local women brought eggs and milk, and the weather was beautiful. The children played happily on the mountainside. But Eunice grew weaker.

Her condition was finally diagnosed as tuberculosis, and when winter forced them back to their old house, Eunice told them that she had “come home to go home.” She instructed her husband how to care for the children and she occasionally mustered her strength to sort through keepsakes. She grew painfully thin, surviving only on raw eggs. And then she was buried beside her two sons in the International Cemetery in Chefoo.

How did Wiley press on? By appropriating 1 Peter 1:13. It became his survival verse and gave him strength sufficient for his days. He leaned on it, and it never wavered under his weight.

Why did one missionary survive while another didn’t? Only the Sovereign God—who orders all for our good—holds the answers to those kinds of questions. Christians, it seems, don’t live by explanations but by promises. “Therefore,” Peter said, “gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and rest your hope fully upon the grace that is to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ.”

A faith that can’t be tested can’t be trusted.

as told by Robert J. Morgan

Published by Intentional Faith

Devoted to a Faith that Thinks

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