Missionaries You Should Know

reading the bible beside the water

Gladys Aylward

Gladys Aylward was a tiny woman under five feet tall. She was a chambermaid in England, but she felt that the Lord would have her go as a missionary to China. It was impossible for her to go by boat at the time, so she decided to get to China by way of a perilous journey across Russian Siberia.

An interesting story of Gladys happened during a war in China. The Japanese were invading China, and everyone had fled beyond the Yellow River for safety. Gladys took care of one hundred orphaned Chinese children. She decided to take all these children and try to get as far as the Yellow River and cross over. For weeks they walked over the mountains, desperately trying to get away from the invaders. Finally the group reached the Yellow River, but how were they to cross over? There were no ferry boats there. Gladys did not know that the ferry boats had stopped a long time ago. Bitterly disappointed, and without any dinner, the children lay down to sleep. By the third day Gladys was desperate. What were they to do, and how could they get over the river?

By the third day, the children were hungry and complaining. Gladys felt that the Lord had let her down. In her agony she prayed and sobbed her heart out. “Lord,” she said, “I’ve done my best and it’s no good. The children are starving. Why haven’t You helped me?

“Ma, don’t cry,” said one little child whom Gladys had once rescued from a life of misery. “Ma, Moses crossed the Red Sea and it was bigger than this. God isn’t any different, and I’m going to ask Him to work another miracle,” said the child.

As Gladys listened, the child began to ask God to get them across the river. Gladys went over and put her arm around her. “God forgive me for not having the faith of a little child,” she said. Together they asked God to help them. Gladys’ gloom was gone, and they were sure that God would deliver them. After the prayer, Gladys was interrupted. It was an officer in the uniform of the Nationalist Chinese Army. “I have a boat and I can take you and the children across the river,” he said. “Praise the Lord!” said Gladys, as she rounded up the children. In relays, the children were all taken across the river. After they were all across, the officer and his boat disappeared. It was only then that Gladys realized how strange it all was. When the group arrived in the city a few hours later, the Chinese could not believe her story. “The army came away from the Yellow River weeks ago,” they said. Gladys smiled and said to herself “God isn’t any different”

“The angel of the Lord encampeth round about them that fear Him, and delivereth them.” Psalms 34:7

Previous Article: Search the Scriptures

Other Resources