The Incredible Patience of William Carey
William Carey a young Pastor stood up in front of everyone at a meeting with other Baptists in the late 1700’s. He was fighting for the importance of global missions. This man had guts, he believed every word what Jesus said in The Great Commission (Matthew 28:19-20).
“Go therefore and make disciples of all nations” William did not see that The Christian Church was obeying this command to go to every country and proclaim the Gospel. God was calling him to missions outside the country of England!
A short while later young William Carey was on a ship with his good friend, wife, three boys, and a child on the way heading to do long term missions in India. Think about that! Have you ever gone to another city, state, or country before to live for the very first time? He was going somewhere that had a whole different language and culture and had no idea what to expect. He did it all for a calling.
We all can really use this example in our lives, to trust God with everything from our family, work, school, you name it. Think of what God can do when we trust him in every aspect of our lives! I have to remind myself daily to trust our Creator.
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding.” Psalm 3:5
William and his family landed in Calcutta, India on November 11, 1793. Not knowing the culture and language became very stressful and tough for the family. He struggled finding a job, illness, loneliness and regret set in on his family, life was tough and miserable! William wrote on his struggles. But he found hope, “Well, I have God, and His word is sure.” He hoped in God amongst his misery.
William slowly began to learn the language there and soon was preaching in small groups of people. In the process of doing that he also began translating the Bible into Bengali. His family once again suffered. William’s son got Dysentery and quickly died, while William caught Malaria. His joy, love, trust, and hope did not stop for God!
God began to work! William and his family moved to another location close by to be under the protection of the Danes during the English control of India. God answered his prayer! William again began to translate the Bible into Bengali. It was now 1800, after seven years of missionary work he baptized the first believer that he led to Christ. In 1802 he finished translating the New Testament in Bengali.
This is what is most fascinating to me, that there were no converts for seven years! What I pick up from this story is that we will never understand God completely. Wherever you are at with God, takes patience. You could be asking yourself while you were reading this some of these questions. Why do bad things happen, didn’t God want him there? Why did God wait seven years to convert someone?
What I have gathered in God’s word and through my experience’s is that we do not understand God completely! We do understand some of God’s intents and motives. God will always do the best thing for us! We will not truly understand this concept, but once again God has a perfect intent and will.
I find helpful a piece of an article from therebelution.com that may help these questions:
And so, though God is far from human — as far as ‘mortal’ and ‘immortal’ implies — we often treat God as we would another human. We expect to see Him, hear Him. We expect Him to make sense to us. When He does something which hurts us, we expect Him to explain Himself before we can continue in our relationship.
But when God puts pain in our lives He mostly doesn’t follow up with a prompt explanation. In fact, it may be years before we realize why He put us through that ordeal.
Yes, God is not human. In contrast, He is perfect. That means His power and His plan for our lives, His wisdom and His love for us, are perfect. That means that the ‘explanation’ for everything — good or bad — that happens in our lives is that it is part of His perfect plan.
God used William Carey’s pain and trust for God’s glory. Later William Carey went onto teach in Calcutta, translate with his press crew 215 languages and dialects in India, and led another 700 people in India to our Creator. I look up to William Carey, he set a great example of what missions should look like… worship.
As you move on with your hour, day, weekend, week, month, year and life, listen to God. You know his voice, what’s your calling?
"Expect great things; attempt great things."