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Easier to be a missionary than to stay at home?

Discussion in 'Missions, Evangelism & Witnessing' started by Goodbook, Mar 4, 2017.

  1. Goodbook

    Goodbook Reading the Bible

    +5,051
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    I was reading this book of letters home by a christian lady who went to africa from nz in the sixties.

    She only stayed about, five or six years or so.

    She left her home at 22, married her husband in africa (he was a bible salesman) and later on had two children.

    Apart from learning a new language and dealing with mice and bugs, I think she led a pretty safe and comfortable house-wife life and would have been no hardship for her compared to what women face nowadays staying at home!

    She was forever meeting up with other church people, going to dinners and organising church meetings and living in her own euro-english speaking missions bubble. She even had african servants doing all the housework for her! Several were let go and others complained they weren't paid enough. She never seemed to write with love about the african people or share any testimony abour them (since her husband seemed to be doing all the work, preaching, and SELLING Bibles not even giving them away) just keep thanking God she was able to lead such a comfortable life!

    When she left school, in the sixties, she just didn't want to be a teacher or nurse, and she didn't want to be an old maid so, I don't know, was being a missionary like a safe option? Just be a housewife in another country? It wouldn't have been much different than staying home really. Same challenges as we have mice and bugs and other diseases too. But she gets to employ servants.

    I finished this book thinking huh. Is that all?
     
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  2. Goodbook

    Goodbook Reading the Bible

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    she did move around a lot depending on her husbands work but, I don't know..people make such a big deal about missions but she didn't seem to be doing any kind of outreach there apart from supporting her husband. I mean thats fine if that's what you called to do..but..I just thought her story was rather bland and had no fire for God. It was very self-absorbed, was hoping to learn a bit about africa and the people but was all about her mundane daily life and what she ate for supper.
     
  3. LaSorcia

    LaSorcia Vanitas Staff Member Purple Team - Moderator Supporter

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    From what you've written, that doesn't sound much like missionary work, it sounds like opportunism.
     
  4. sundewgrower

    sundewgrower Well-Known Member Supporter

    +618
    United States
    Non-Denom
    Engaged
    hmm I skimmed and got it wrong.
    I'd concur and say it sounds a little opportunistic.
    When I wish to serve I usually offer to cover my expenses and not a benefit--not cast myself as a freeloader or burden.
     
  5. faroukfarouk

    faroukfarouk Fading curmudgeon

    +16,300
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    Married
    Among secularists the word missionary is one that is often denigrated. Even though secularists often spare no effort to promote their own ideas.

    I think we should be careful to find out the circumstances of someone's situation before we make conclusions.

    Regarding Bibles, we should also be careful not to assume that people's circumstances in other countries are all identical. Sometimes if a subsidized Bible is sold for a nominal sum, it may be valued more than one which is entirely free. Sometimes special discounts are given to people in particular circumstances. If national Christians are involved in the distribution of low cost Bibles, then for a foreigner to come in and give many copies away free of charge can be regarded as "dumping".
     
  6. Goodbook

    Goodbook Reading the Bible

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    Well, i dont know she as a young wife then so maybe back then God was preparing her for something better and a more active ministry but I was kinda disappointed. She would have done much the same things if shed stayed home in her own country.

    She did have a miscarriage but then many women go through that anyway.

    Also, why were people selling bibles in africa, i mean were churches buying them? She never said. It wasnt through Gideons.

    In other missions books I read people smuggled Bibles into countries and gave them away free. Isnt the gospel meant to be given freely?

    They went to congo, Nigeria etc but for the most part the letters home consisted of we went here and there and had dinner blah blah blah. We were welcomed in this and that church.

    I dont really understand what kind of work missionaries are meant to do in africa. She didnt seem to do any?! She did mention some violent things happening and things being stolen and political unrest, but since they were foreigners it never touched them.
     
  7. Goodbook

    Goodbook Reading the Bible

    +5,051
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    Read another book this time bout an aussie lady who decided to motorcycle through africa on her own.
    Well she wasnt a christian but guess what aside from staying at backpackers she could always count on a free room and meal at a mission station.

    At one of them she even sat down to read a bible.

    It got me thinking thats where the bibles need to be...at these backpackers and hostels because theres all these disllusioned with home and jobs young travellers wanting to explore the world but few bibles in places where they can connect to what they really seeking. They call the 'lonely planet' books their bibles.

    Well the Lonely planet traveller is just a modern day version of the prodigal son. Spending all their money on riotous living.

    In this book she didnt mention meeting many african christians. Muslims, but not christians. Most of the people she met were expats, or if they were african they were tour guides or those wanting to do business with her, i.e wanting a handout.

    I dont know if places like the YMCA and YWCA are even still christian?
     
  8. Goodbook

    Goodbook Reading the Bible

    +5,051
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    It does seem HIV is the biggest thing in africa to be dealing with, apart from malaria.

    Not sure why malaria tends to plague africa the most. Out of all the continents. Apart from the sahara, much of africa is extremely fertile. I just wonder what Gods been doing in africa lately.

    I heard lots of missionaries go to Uganda as theres lots of orphans there.
     
  9. vinsight4u

    vinsight4u Contributor

    +2,588
    United States
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    /nvm
     
    Last edited: Mar 8, 2017
  10. Goodbook

    Goodbook Reading the Bible

    +5,051
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    Am reading a better book about missionary life in africa its called Pig in a taxi and other African adventures by Suzanne Crocker.

    She was a missionary nurse in Togo.
     
  11. Tolworth John

    Tolworth John Well-Known Member Supporter

    +2,842
    United Kingdom
    Non-Denom
    Married
    There are a couple of online accounts I would recommend. One strangly by an atheist is 'Why Africa needs Christianity?' by Matthew Parish, despit or even because of it's title it is well worth reading.

    Then there is 'The Missionary Roots of Liberal Democracy.' Want to know the benefits of Cnristianity to society read this.
    Both you will have to track down on the net.

    If its a missionary story set in the 1950's look for 'Missing Believed Killed!' about a medical missionary caught up in the simba rebellion.
     
  12. Goodbook

    Goodbook Reading the Bible

    +5,051
    Christian
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    Why doesnt africa have any kind of infrastructure, I mean I always hear that africa doesnt even have running water or electricity, or the basic things for sanitation...? Maybe only the cities have this?

    Hospitals, schools, people looking after rubbish collection, roads, libraries etc. there seem to be many church plants but you would think the people would be able to get by it cant be all the land is infertile.
     
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