Many have heard about the famous missionaries, and they sure deserve their accolades, but today I want to write about a different type of missionary. I seek not only to write but to honor the "Unknown Missionary".
That is unknown to the world, but known to God.
About four years after the church was born, persecution began to scatter many believers abroad. Wherever they went they began to spread the good news about Jesus the Messiah. Some references are made to them in the Bible, but their names are seldom recorded.
Down through the ages many have followed their example, and have taken the gospel unto farther away lands. This activity has continued until today.
No one has any idea of how many missionaries have gone and still are going into the un-reached parts of the globe. But there is no doubt that they constitute a great multitude.
These were men and woman who took the words of Jesus literately, and they did go unto the uttermost parts of the earth.
These pioneers left families and friends, and departed unto far away and unknown lands. They left by ship, by horseback or just walked.
They went through dense jungles, burning deserts, and dizzying mountains, taking the Bible as their companion and comfort.
These courageous souls faced many dangers. They confronted treacherous rivers, wild beasts, torturous weather, and hostile natives. Many gave their lives along the way. They did all this and more, all for his name sake.
Some were poor missionaries which received little or no support from missionary organizations. They relied upon the Lord to supply their necessities.
Some were not excellent with words, but what they lacked in oratory skills they made up with enthusiasm.
While other men were content to lead ordinary lives, these extraordinary souls were going forward leading a life of danger, hardship and faith, but they wouldn't have it any other way.
Their lives were hard indeed, they had to adapt to different weather, the food was different, they had to learn a new language, and they had to understand a different culture.
While other men were busy amassing fortunes, and building great estates; these missionaries were busy building the kingdom of God. They clearly understood that material possessions would eventually fade, but the kingdom of God will be forever.
They built small communities of believers, and worshiped in small cottage churches. Their worship was simple, but the spirit of God moved mightily among them.
These were men and women that spent their lives for the furtherance of the Gospel. They labored in obscurity all their lives. They toiled hard and long until their years were ended.
Their names were forgotten, even by some of their descendants, but God knows and remembers them, and will surely recompense them.