Daily Topic for January 03, 2012
Part of what is difficult about frontier mission work is the motivation. There have been times in Church history when mission work was misused by people who used it to expand the political power of an empire. For example, the Russian and the Spanish empires both used mission work to expand their influence among newly-conquered peoples. But in each case there were missionaries who wanted to glorify God, rather than an empire.
Pray that our hearts will be pure as we pray for the unreached, so that God will give us the power to keep His Kingdom first and foremost in our hearts.
Rowland and his friend Tom met with Haile Selassie, the soon-to-be-emperor of Ethiopia, who wanted the mission to establish medical work in that East African country. Within a few months, SIM and other missions were allowed to open stations in formerly forbidden areas.
However, the Italian military forced missionaries out when they invaded Ethiopia. The Church had no missionaries, but only the Holy Spirit to rely upon. During this time of occupation, the Church grew tremendously. By 1941 “there were over 70 groups of believers meeting regularly for worship.” When Rowland left Ethiopia there had only been three partly organized churches with about 150 believers. Now jails were filled with Christians who gathered for prayer and worship, and they soon won many to Christ. The prison warden would release Christians because they created too many converts!
Once more Bingham planned to return to Ethiopia, leaving on his 70th birthday. This time he would use a new method of transportation, a commercial airline! In December of 1942, he went to his office to work. There he suffered a massive stroke and died four days later. Letters poured in from around the world. Bingham told people that, “he did not have a great deal of faith, but that he had a little faith in a great God, and that great God would not let His causes fail.”
Pray for God to raise up others with “little faith” in our Great God.