I’m currently reading a book on David Livingstone. “David Livingstone, His Life and Letters,” by a guy named George Seever, Copyright 1957. Livingstone was definitely one of “The Greats,” if such a title means anything. He was a missionary through and through, and he endured things that modern missionaries would find unfathomable. He seemed to be a rather serious, dry person, but nothing stopped him. He lived 1813-1873. I’ll give you a couple quotes by him:
“I am spared in health, while all the company have been attacked by the fever [malaria]. If God has accepted my service, then my life is charmed till my work is done.”
Later, he had “Seven attacks of malaria in nine weeks.” However, he kept travelling while sick with malaria.
“It is not the encountering of difficulties and dangers in obedience to the promptings of the inward spiritual life, which constitutes tempting of God and Providence; but the acting without faith, proceeding on our errands with no previous convictions of duty, and no prayer for aid and direction.”
-I think by “tempting of God,” he’s referring to putting God to the test. i.e., it’s not when we encounter insurmountable difficulties (7 attacks of malaria in 9 weeks) that we’re sinning by putting God to the test, but it’s when we act without faith and proceed forward without prayer or conviction of what God wants us to do that we are testing His providence. In other words, if we go forward in obedience and encounter dificulties, there is no testing of Him involved: He is sure to come through. I think that’s what he’s saying.
“Can the love of Christ not carry the missionary where the slave-trade carries the trader?”
“I shall open a path to the interior, or perish.”
If you want to read more about David Livingstone (for free), I recommend this site: http://www.missionaryetexts.org/#davidlivingstone It has his journals, some memoirs, and a few biographies, all of which are now public domain. You can print them out and bind and read them as a book, if you want. I’m wanting to take advantage of that site more. Public domain stuff is amazing on the internet.
The quote most assicoated with him is “Dr. Livingstone, I presume.” He was deep in the jungles of Africa, and he met another Caucasian, HM Stanly. Stanly instantly knew he’d found Livingstone (because there were no other white men in those jungles) and said the above quote (so the story goes).
I sometimes feel like that in Japan, though not so much in the Tokyo area. But sometimes, you can say, “I’ll be waiting for you at the station. I’ll be easy to spot, because I’m a foreigner.”
“Mr. Stoll, I presume?”