I had a waking vision years ago while attending a worship conference at Christ for the Nations in Dallas. Our…
Last week we learned from the examples of Jesus and Paul, that which is done to the glory of God has its eternal consequences, the resurrection guarantees it. In conclusion, would like to finish the story on this wise…
Some time ago I did a post entitled Robert and Mary. I would submit to you how discouragement can sometimes deceive us. If you remember the story…Robert Moffat was hired by James Smith, owner of Dukinfield Nurseries despite Mr. Smith’s misgivings. He knew that Robert was handsome which would certainly attract his daughter and he also knew that Robert, more than anything, wanted to be a missionary. Which in his mind was a recipe for disaster.
Just as he feared one day while working in the gardens Robert met Mary and found they had a commonality—she was a Christian too who also held interests in missions work. Hiding this from her parents she’d been secretly praying two years before that God would send her to Africa.
Robert and Mary quickly became attached and when the couple announced to their families their plans of marriage and leaving England as missionaries to South Africa, the reaction was one of utter violence. Robert’s parents agreed, but the Smiths refused consent. After exhausting all attempts at pleading and imploring—which failed. With a broken heart, Robert decided to abandon any hopes of marriage to Mary and left for the mission field alone. “From the clearest indications of his providence,” he wrote his parents, “he bids me go out alone. It is the Lord, let him do what seemeth him good.” So on October 18, 1816, Robert Moffat sailed for South Africa, leaving his heart behind. On the field, he suffered intense loneliness. “I have many difficulties to encounter, being alone,” he wrote his parents. Back in England, Mary was miserable too. After three long years, she finally told Robert in a letter she’d given up all prospects of joining him.
But unexpectedly sometime later the tide turned. Mary sent this letter. “They both yesterday calmly resigned me into the hands of the Lord,” she wrote, “declaring they durst no longer withhold me.” Mary quickly packed her trunks, bid her parents a fond goodbye with no expectation of ever seeing them again, and left for South Africa. There she and Robert were married before a handful of friends on December 27, 1819. And there they labored side-by-side for 53 years, becoming one of the greatest husband and wife teams in missionary history.
A great story, it has a happy ending so what does discouragement have to do with this? Glad you asked.
Here is the rest of the story. Many years before, a faithful Scottish minister was approached by one of his deacons who said to him, “Something is very wrong with your ministry. You preach every Sunday, but in the past year only one person has been added to the church and he was just a boy.” The old man listened intently with tearful eyes. “God knows I have tried to do my duty,” he said. “I can trust Him for the results.”
“Yes, yes,” said the deacon, “but by their fruits, you shall know them.” The old minister was nearly overcome with hurt and despair. In the course of an entire year, no growth, no visible results – except for one boy. But you see that “one boy” was Robert Moffat.
You may have toiled for the kingdom and not reaped the harvest you thought, don’t be discouraged. Because it is in the matter of the things men don’t see that are visible to God. Never forget “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.” (Romans 8:28 KJV) So all things that you don’t see are those invisible things that are working according to His purpose. Such as the story of Robert Moffat and many other stories in your life that could be that same analogy. Beloved stay encouraged! No matter what it looks like your labors are not in vain for the Lord!
May the Blessings of the LORD be with you today and always. Thank you so much for your continued readership and support.….Blessings and Peace!
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