- Beth @A Little Country House
- God does have a sense of humor, after years of infertility, we adopted 2 beautiful babies, I later had the "surprise baby"! In the very spare time I have, I love to decorate, paint, and make all kinds of things. I do repurpose old furniture and custom paint furniture for clients. I work with all types of vintage items. I love to make our house a home. I like to see how others do it and share what I do also. Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested in any products I have posted or if you are local to Atlanta and want a furniture face lift! Love your old junk again!
Thursday, October 17, 2013
Fields of Lovely Flowers
Elisabeth Alden Scott was born in February of 1906, soon after, her parents set off with their infant girl for mainland China. They were missionaries under the Presbyterian Church. They settled in Shangdong and had 4 more daughters. Elisabeth was later sent to boarding school in Tungchow, China. She then went to the United States to attend college and Moody Bible Institute. When she was 18, this is a prayer she wrote down in her bible, "Lord, I give up all my own plans and purposes, all my own desires and hopes, and accept Thy will for my life. I give myself, my life, my all utterly to Thee to be Thine forever. Fill me and seal me with Thy Holy Spirit. Use me as Thou wilt. Send me where Thou wilt. Work out Thy whole will in my life at any cost, now and forever."
Elisabeth grew up in China, loved it's people and longed to go back. At Moody, she met John Stam. They fell in love. He also had a heart for China and was training to go there. She graduated first and was sent to China with CIM, China Inland Missons.
She arrived in China in 1931. By this time, political unrest was spreading across the country. To simplify the over complicated times, Nationalist China was battling Communist Party China while Japan was going to war with China too. There were slaughters and war cropping up in various parts of the country. Elisabeth began working with a missionary family in Yingshong. The conditions
there were very poor. She battled unsanitary living situations. There were rats in the sleeping quarters and flies everywhere and on everything. She was a missionary child, this stuff didn't phase her. When she entered the church building and saw people filling it from morning til evening, this filled her heart. Women and children hungry to hear the gospel, showing up for a word of hope in their weary world.
Elisabeth was overjoyed to be with these people. This was her calling.
John graduated from Moody Bible Institute and left for China to start his mission. The 2 were married in October 1932. They continued to work with CIM and in September of 1934, Elisabeth had a baby girl, Helen Priscilla. They were given their reassignment as a couple. They would go to Jingde in November 1934, to relieve a missionary family who were leaving to go home on furlough. John and Elisabeth and their new baby were settling in Jingde. On the morning of December 6, 1934, the Red Army invaded the province and took the city of Jingde within a few short hours. They began searching homes and seizing and killing people. The Stams were kneeling with their servants in prayer when the soldiers entered their home. They demanded all their money and belngings and forced the Stams to write a ransom note to the CIM, demanding 20,000.00. Then they took the Stams with their infant baby. The servants tried to help the Stams but were threatened by the soldiers. John and Elisabeth were marched many miles to different locations and held. One was a post office. There a worker felt sorry for them and took a letter John had written to his people at the CIM (China Inland Mission). John explained what was happening to his co-workers, citing Phillpians 1:20, May Christ be glorified whether by life or death.. The soldiers then marched them further to another city , Miaoshou. Ironically, John and his minister friend were supposed to meet here a week later to share the gospel with this town. After 2 days of walking they were shackled in an abandoned house. The next morning, Dec. 8th the soldiers took John and Elisabeth, leaving their baby laying on a cot. They led them up to a small mountain area. John was pleading with the soldiers to release Elisabeth, but they would not. They were beheaded while the villagers looked on. Elisabeth was only 28 years old. Witnesses said that the Stam's were calm and peaceful as death came upon them.
C.L. Lo was a Chinese minister and friend of the Stam's. He arrived in Miaoshou and heard that his friends were taken captive. By the time he found where they were, he learned it was too late. He and his wife asked about the baby, Helen Priscilla. No one knew where she was, or wouldn't say out of fear. 36 hours after the Stam's died, Mr. Lo found the abandoned house they were held captive and could hear the baby crying. She was alive! He gave the infant girl to his wife, and searched for another new mother in the village who could nurse the baby girl. He then buried the Stams and as the villagers looked on this is what he said to them..
"You have witnessed what took place here , and feel pity for what has happened to our friends. You should know, however, that they are children of God, and their souls are already at rest in the bosom of their heavenly Father. It was for you that they came to China and to Miaoshou, in order to tell you about God’s great love and the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, so that you might believe in Jesus and gain eternal life. You have already heard the message they preached, and have seen their sacrifice, which is certain evidence [of their love]. Do not forget what they said: that you must repent and believe the Gospel!”
The Lo's took the baby, Helen Priscilla and returned her to her maternal grandparents.There were many villages and communities of Chinese believers who mourned the loss of John and Elisabeth and knew the impact they had made during their time in China.
A Chinese church historian, Chen Yi Ping, later wrote this public letter to Helen Priscilla when she was grown.
“We know that you wish to remain unknown and obscure. You have refused all requests for interviews, and will not read letters sent by those who cared for your parents…… In all this, we beseech you to forgive us Chinese people, who are in debt to you for the blood of your parents, your lonely childhood and adult life (for who could know of your inner world, or how you felt that night when you lay in your swaddling clothes in Miaoshou, with no one aware of what you were going through). We even owe you a gospel debt, if you have stumbled and fallen in your faith…… Please accept our heartfelt apology, and please believe that your parents’ blood was not shed in vain, for from the hard, blood-stained ground of China has sprouted fields of lovely flowers - the souls of many who have been saved.”
You can read more about John and Elisabeth Stam here: