"> '); Prevailing Intercessory Prayer : Hudson Taylor in Early Years - Growth of a Soul | Ch. 16-25

J. Hudson Taylor in Early Years - Growth of a Soul

Dr. and Mrs. Howard Taylor

PART IV, Chapters 16-25

Shanghai and Early Itinerations



IT was a foggy Sunday off Gutzlaff Island, cold with occasional rain, as might be expected at the end of February, and the Dumfries lay at anchor waiting for a pilot to take her up to Shanghai. Through stormy weather she had held her way up the China Sea, driven out of her course by westerly gales, caught in a cyclone and blinding snow storms, but now the last stage of her long journey was reached, and the yellow, turbid water surging around her told that they were already in the estuary of a great river.

Muffled in his heaviest wraps Hudson Taylor paced the deck, doing his best to keep warm and be patient. It was a strange Sunday, this last at sea. For days he had been packed and ready to leave the ship, and hindered by storm and cold from other occupations had given the more time to thought and prayer.

" What peculiar feelings," he wrote, " arise at the prospect of soon landing in an unknown country, in the midst of strangers-a country now to be my home and sphere of labour. 'Lo, I am with you always.' ` I will never leave thee nor forsake thee.' Sweet promises ! I have nothing to fear, with Jesus on my side.

" Great changes probably have taken place since last we heard from (Mina. And what news shall I receive from England ? Where shall I go, and how shall I live at first ? These and a thousand other questions engage the mind. . . . But the most important question of all is,' Am I now living as near to God as possible-?' Alas ! I am not. My wayward heart, so easily occupied with the things of time and sense, needs continually leading back to the fold from whence it strays. Oh ! that my ' rejoicing ' may be `more abundant in Christ Jesus,' and my ` conversation' ever ` as becometh the Gospel of Christ.' "

As afternoon wore on, what were those boats in the distance-looming toward them through the mist ? One beat its way up before long, eagerly watched from the Dumfries. Yes, there was no mistaking that picturesque sail and curiously painted hull, nor the faces of the men as they came into sight. There they were, twelve or fourteen of them, blue-garbed, dark-eyed, vociferating in an unknown tongue-the first Chinese Hudson Taylor had ever seen. And how his heart went out to them ! Behind the strange, uncouth exterior he saw the treasure he had come so far to seek-the souls for which Christ died.

" I did long," he wrote, " to be able to tell them the Glad Tidings."

A little later the English pilot came on board and received a hearty welcome. There was no hope of reaching Woosung that day, still less Shanghai, fifteen miles farther up the tidal river ; but there was much he could tell them, while waiting for the fog to clear, of the long winter's doings since they had left England.

From him they learned, for example, of the troubles between Russia and Turkey that within a few weeks were to lead to the Crimean War.1 {1 This war, which was to cost England twenty-four thousand men, and to add forty-one millions sterling to the national debt, commenced on March 27, 1854, and was not concluded until two years later.}The allied fleets of England and France had already reached the scene of conflict, and nothing it was feared could avert the serious issue. But startling though it was to hear of war-clouds hanging over Europe, it was scarcely as great a shock as the news from China itself, and especially from the port at which they were about to land. Not only was the Tai-ping Rebellion still devastating province after province in its progress toward Peking ; Shanghai close at hand, both the native city and the foreign Settlement, was plunged in all the horrors of war. A local band of rebels known as the " Red Turbans " had obtained possession of the city, around which was now encamped an Imperial army of forty to fifty thousand men, the latter proving a more serious menace to the European community than even the rebels themselves.

For the rest, bad as their passage had been they had arrived ahead of vessels that set out before them, but just too late for the February mail. They must be prepared, moreover, to find everything at famine prices, for the dollar had risen from four shillings, its ordinary value, to six or seven, and would soon be higher : a discouraging outlook for one with a small income in English money !

All this and more the pilot told them, and they had time to think over his communications. Monday was still so foggy that they could not proceed, and though they weighed anchor on Tuesday morning it was only to beat up against the wind a few miles nearer to Woo-sung. But that night the fog lifted, and the young missionary pacing the deck caught sight of a low-lying shore, running far to north and south, that was no island. How it arrested him ! His prayers were answered ; the dream of years come true. He was looking on China at last, under the evening sky.

Not until 5 P.M. next day, however (Wednesday, March 1), was he able to land in Shanghai ; and then it was quite alone, the Dumfries being still detained by adverse winds.

" My feelings on stepping ashore," he wrote, " I cannot attempt to describe. My heart felt as though it had not room and must burst its bonds, while tears of gratitude and thankfulness fell from my eyes."

Then a deep sense of the loneliness of his position began to come over him ; not a friend or acquaintance anywhere ; not a single hand held out to welcome him, or any one who even knew his name.

Mingled with thankfulness for deliverance from many dangers and joy at finding myself at last on Chinese soil came a vivid realisation of the great distance between me and those I loved, and that I was a stranger in a strange land.

I had three letters of introduction, however, and counted on advice and help from one especially, to whom I had been commended by mutual friends, whom I knew well and highly valued. Of course I inquired for him at once, only to learn that he had been buried a month or two previously, having died of fever while we were at sea.

Saddened by these tidings I asked the whereabouts of a missionary to whom another of my introductions was addressed, but only to meet with further disappointment. He had recently left for America. The third letter remained ; but it had been given me by a comparative stranger, and I expected less from it than from the others. It proved, however, to be God's channel of help.

This letter then in hand, he left the British Consulate near the river to find the London Mission compound at some distance across the Settlement. On every side strange sights, sounds and smells now greeted him, especially when the European houses gave place to Chinese shops and dwellings. Here nothing but Chinese was to be heard, and few if any but Chinese were to be seen. The streets grew narrower and more crowded, and overhanging balconies above rows of swinging signboards almost hid the sky. How he found his way for a mile or more does not appear ; but at length a mission-chapel came in sight, and with an upward look for guidance Hudson Taylor turned in at the ever-open gateway of Ma-ka-k'iuen.1{1 The name of the London Mission Compound on Shantung Road, familiar and beloved. The three characters mean, " Medhurst Family Enclosure."}

Several buildings stood before him, including a hospital and dwelling-houses, at the first of which he enquired for Dr. Medhurst to whom his letter was addressed. Sensitive and reserved by nature, it was no small ordeal to Hudson Taylor to have to introduce himself to so important a person, the pioneer as well as founder (with Dr. Lockhart) of Protestant missionary effort in this part of China, and it was almost with relief he heard that Dr. Medhurst was no longer living on the compound. He too, it seemed, had gone away.

More than this Hudson Taylor was unable to make out, as the Chinese servants could not speak English, nor could he understand a word of their dialect. It was a perplexing situation until a European came in sight, to whom the new arrival quickly made himself known. To his relief he found he was talking with Mr. Edkins, one of the junior missionaries, who welcomed him kindly and explained that Dr. and Mrs. Medhurst had moved to the British Consulate, as the premises they had occupied were within sight and sound of constant fighting at the North Gate of the city. Dr. Lockhart, however, remained ; and while he went to find him, Mr. Edkins invited the stranger into one of the Mission-houses.

It was quite an event in those days for an Englishman and especially a missionary to appear in Shanghai unannounced. Most people came by the regular mail-steamers once a month, whose arrival caused general excitement. None was expected then, and even the Dumfries was not yet in port ; so that when another of the L.M.S. people came in, during Mr. Edkin's absence, Hudson Taylor had to explain all over again who and what he was. But Alexander Wylie soon set the shy lad at ease, and entertained him until Mr. Edkins returned with Dr. Lockhart.

It did not take long for these new friends to understand the situation, and then there was nothing for it but to receive the young missionary into one of their own houses. They could not leave him without a home, and the Settlement was so crowded that lodgings were not to be had at any price. Dr. Lockhart, happily, had a room at his disposal. He was living alone, Mrs. Lockhart having been obliged to return to England, and with genuine kindness welcomed Hudson Taylor as his guest, permitting him to pay a moderate sum to cover board-expenses.

This arrangement made, Mr. Edkins took him to see Mr. and Mrs. Muirhead, who completed the L.M.S. staff in Shanghai, and introduced him also to Mr. and Mrs. Burdon of the Church Missionary Society, who had rented an unoccupied house (belonging possibly to Dr. Medhurst) on the same compound. The Burdons invited him to dinner that evening. They were young and newly married, having only been a year or two in China, and from the first were drawn to Hudson Taylor in a sympathy he warmly reciprocated.

" The fireside looked so homelike, their company was so pleasant and all the news they had to tell," he wrote, " so full of interest that it was most refreshing. After prayer at ten o'clock I returned to Dr. Lockhart's, who kindly gave me a room and made me quite at home to enjoy once more a bed on shore." 1 {1 It is a matter of no little interest to think of Hudson Taylor on his arrival as welcomed by this group of distinguished missionaries. " There were giants ... in those days," and certainly the L.M.S. had their share ! Among the honoured names on the long roll of its missionaries few take a higher place than Medhurst, Lockhart, Wylie, Muirhead, Edkins, and Griffith John who joined them a few months later." Most of the large cities in Kiang-su and North Cheh-kiang first heard the Word of Life from this band of devoted young men . who in the years before 1860 were associated with the pioneer evangelist to central China, Dr. Medhurst" (A Century of Missions in China, p. 7).Of Dr. Lockhart it need only be said that he was the first medical missionary from England to China. He landed in Canton four years after Dr. Peter Parker from America, and accompanied Dr. Medhurst when, in 1843, he commenced missionary operations in central China.At the time of Hudson Taylor's arrival, Dr. Medhurst and Dr. Lockhart had already been eleven years in Shanghai. Both were in middle life. Dr. Medhurst being fifty-eight and Dr. Lockhart forty-three years of age. Mr. Wylie was a man of thirty-nine, and a widower. Messrs. Edkins and Muirhead were thirty-one and thirty-two respectively, and had been in Shanghai already six and seven years : the important centre in which they were still to be fellow-labourers after more than half a century had gone by. The literary as well as evangelistic labours of these men were most remarkable. Dr. Medhurst was proficient in eight or ten languages, and published fifty-nine works in Chinese, six in Malay, and twenty-seven in English. Dr. Lockhart wrote and translated valuable books on medicine and medical-missions. Alexander Wylie “acquired French, Russian, German, and the Manchu and Mongol languages while in charge of the L.M.S. Press in Shanghai, and published numerous works of great value both in English and Chinese." The venerable and beloved Dr. Muirhead, during his fifty-three years of incessant evangelistic and pastoral labours, " translated the first considerable work on Geography ever published in Chinese ... and was the author also of many theological works, and a member of the Bible Revision Committee." While the well-known Dr. Edkins, who survived them all, with " an extraordinary gift for languages and a profound knowledge of Chinese," was one of the leading sinologues of his day. The Rev. J. S. Burdon also continued for nearly half a century in missionary labours in China. He was the first representative of the Church Missionary Society to commence work in Peking, which became his headquarters for eleven years. " He translated the Prayer Book and a Bible History, and published several lesser works, besides aiding in the translation of the Scriptures." In 1873 he was consecrated third Bishop d Victoria, Hong-kong, which responsible office he held for more than twenty years. A remarkable group of men, reinforced by a remarkable addition in the coming among them of Hudson Taylor. }

Here then was an answer to many prayers, the solution of many ponderings. For the moment he was provided for under favourable circumstances, and though he could not long trespass upon the doctor's hospitality, it would afford him at any rate a little while in which to look about and make permanent arrangements. With good courage, therefore, he arose next morning to see what could be done. The Dumfries would be coming in and he must have his luggage brought ashore, then procure necessary books and a teacher to commence as soon as possible the study of the language. It was his first whole day in China.

" My pleasure on awakening," he wrote to his sister, " and hearing the cheerful song of birds may be better imagined than described. The green corn waving in the fields, budding plants in the garden, and sweetly perfumed blossoms on some of the trees were indeed delightful after so long at sea."

Breakfast over he went to the Consulate, and though disappointed to find only one letter (on which he had to pay no less than two shillings postage) it was a letter from home, containing enclosures from both mother and sisters.

" Never. did I pay two shillings more willingly in my life," he assured them, " than for that letter."

Soon the Dumfries was reported, and with a Chinese helper he managed to get his things brought up to Dr. Lockhart's. It was a peculiar sensation to be marching at the head of a procession of coolies through the crowded streets, all his belongings swinging from bamboo poles across their shoulders, while at every step they sang or shouted " Ou-ah Ou-ay " in varying tones, some a third above the rest. They were not really in pain or distress, although it sounded like it ; and by the time some of the copper cash he had received in exchange for a Mexican dollar had been distributed amongst them, he had had his first lesson in business dealings with the Chinese.

Then came the daily service in the hospital, conducted on this occasion by Dr. Medhurst, and Hudson Taylor listened for the first time to Gospel preaching in the tongue with which he was to become so familiar. In conversation afterwards, Dr. Medhurst advised him to commence his studies with the Mandarin dialect, the most widely spoken in China, and undertook to procure a teacher. Evening brought the weekly prayer-meeting, when Hudson Taylor was introduced to others of the missionary community, thus ending with united waiting upon God a day full of interest and encouragement.

But before the week closed he began to see another side of Shanghai life. The journal tells of guns firing all night, and the city wall not half a mile away covered with sentry lights ; of sharp fighting seen from his windows, in which men were killed and wounded under his very eyes ; of a patient search for rooms in the Chinese part of the Settlement, only emphasising the fact that there were none to be had ; of his first contact with heathenism ; and of scenes of suffering in the native city which made an indelible impression of horror upon his mind.

Of some of these experiences he wrote to his sister ten days after his arrival On Saturday [March 4] I took a walk through the Market, and such a muddy, dirty place as Shanghai I never did see ! The ground is all mud ; dry in dry weather, but one hour's rain makes it like walking through a clay-field. It scarcely is walking-but wading ! I found that there was no probability of getting a house or even apartments, and felt cast down in spirit.

The following day, Sunday, I attended two services at the L.M.S., and in the afternoon went into the city with Mr. Wylie. You have never seen a city in a state of siege, or been at the seat of war.. God grant you never may ! We walked some distance round the wall, and sad it was to see the wreck of rows upon rows of houses near the city. Burnt down, blown down, battered to pieces-in all stages of ruin they were ! And the misery of those who once inhabited them, and now at this inclement season are driven from house, home and everything, is terrible to think of.

At length we came upon a ladder let down from the wall, by which provisions were being conveyed into the city. We entered also ... and had a little conversation with the soldiers on guard who offered us no opposition. For a long time we wandered through the city, Mr. Wylie talking with people here and there, and giving them tracts. We went into some of the temples and had conversation with the priests, who also received tracts from us. Everywhere we seemed welcome. . . .

As we passed the West Gate, we saw that the mud with which it had been blocked was cleared away. Hundreds of the Rebel soldiery were assembled there, and we met many more going in that direction. They were about to make a sally upon the Imperialists, who would not be expecting it from that quarter.

We then proceeded to the L.M.S. Chapel, and found it crammed with people. Dr. Medhurst was preaching, after which six bags of rice were distributed among the poor creatures, many of whom must perish but for this assistance, rendered daily, as they can do nothing now to earn a living. Some of the windows smashed in the Chapel, and the lamps broken by passing bullets tell of the deadly work that is going on... .

By the time we came to the North Gate they were fighting fiercely outside the city.. One man was brought in dead, another shot through the chest, and a third whose arm I examined seemed in dreadful agony. A ball had gone clean through the arm, breaking the bone in passing. We could do nothing for him unless he would come to the hospital ; for, as Dr. Lockhart said, who came up just at the moment, they would only pull our dressings off.

A little farther on we met some men bringing in a small cannon they had captured, and following them were others dragging along by their tails (queues) five wretched prisoners. The poor fellows cried piteously to us to save them, as they were hurried by, but, alas, we could do nothing ! They would probably be at once decapitated. It makes one's blood run cold to think of such a thing.

Dr. Medhurst, who left the city first, waited a little while for us to overtake him, and as we did not come, went on alone. Shortly after, a cannon-ball struck two men on the very spot where he had been standing, and wounded them so seriously that I fear one if not both will die. When we reached home we found they had been brought to the hospital, and traces of blood seen on the way were thus explained. It makes one sad indeed to be surrounded by so much misery ; to see poor creatures so suffering and distressed, and not be able to relieve them or tell them of Jesus and His love. I can only pray for them. But is not He all-mighty ? He is. Thank God we know He is ! Let us then pray earnestly that He may help them.

All this was intensely painful to a sensitive nature, and Hudson Taylor doubtless felt it the more that it was so unexpected. Trial and hardship he had looked for, of the kind usually associated with a missionary's lot, but every thing was turning out differently from his anticipations. External hardships there were none, save the cold from which he suffered greatly ; but distress of mind and heart seemed daily to increase. He could hardly look out of his window, much less take exercise in any direction, without witnessing misery such as he had never dreamed of before. The tortures inflicted by the soldiery of both armies upon unhappy prisoners from whom they hoped to extort money, and the ravages perpetrated as they pillaged the country for supplies, harrowed him unspeakably. And over all hung the dark pall of heathenism, weighing with a heavy oppression upon his spirit. Many of the temples were destroyed in whole or part and the idols damaged, but still the people worshipped them, crying and praying for help that never came. The gods, it was evident, were unable to save. They could not even protect themselves in these times of danger. But in their extremity, rich and poor, high and low, turned to them still, for they had nothing else.

Seeing which, it can be easily imagined how Hudson Taylor longed to tell them of One mighty to save. But not a sentence could he put together so as to be understood. This enforced silence was a keen distress, for he was accustomed to speaking freely of the things of God. Ever since his conversion five years previously he had given himself as fully as possible to the ministry' of the Gospel. And now for the first time his lips were sealed, and it seemed as if he never would be able in that appalling tongue to tell out all that was in his heart. This again could not but react on his own spiritual life. The channels of outflow to others were sealed, and it was a little while before he realised that they must be kept all the more clear and open toward God. His eagerness to get hold of the language made him devote every moment to study, even to the neglect of prayer and daily feeding upon the Scriptures. Of course the great enemy took advantage of all this, as may be seen from early letters to his parents in which he unburdened his heart

" My position is a very difficult one," he wrote soon after his arrival. " Dr. Lockhart has taken me to reside with him for the present, as houses are not to be had for love or money. . . . No one can live in the. city, for they are fighting almost continuously. I see the walls from my window . . . and the firing is visible at night. They are fighting now, while I write, and the house shakes with the report of cannon.

" It is so cold that I can hardly think or hold the pen. . . . You will see from my letter to Mr. Pearse how perplexed I am. It will be four months before I can hear in reply, and the very kindness of the missionaries who have received me with open arms makes me fear to be burdensome. Jesus will guide me aright.... I love the Chinese more than ever. Oh to be useful among them ! "

To Mr. Pearse he had written about his arrival, and continued on March 3....

I felt very much disappointed on finding no letter from you, but I hope to receive one by next mail. Shanghai is in a very unsettled state, the Rebels and Imperialists fighting continually, This morning a cannon fired near us awoke me before daybreak, shaking the house and making the windows rattle violently.

There is not a house to be obtained here, or even part of one ; those not occupied by Europeans are filled with Chinese merchants who have left the city. The Pilot told me they will give for only three rooms as much as thirty dollars a month, and in some instances more. The missionaries who were living in the city have had to leave, and are residing with others here in the Settlement at present ; so that had it not been for the kindness of Dr. Lockhart I should have been quite nonplussed. As it is I scarcely know what to do. How long the present state of things may last it is impossible to say. If I am to stay here, Dr. Lockhart says that the only plan will be to buy land and build a house. The land would probably cost from a hundred to a hundred and fifty dollars, and the house three or four hundred more. If peace were restored, Dr. Lockhart thinks I could rent a house in the city at from two to three hundred dollars per annum.. So that in any case the expense of living here must be great. I do not know whether it would be less at Hong-kong or any other port ? . , .

Please excuse this hasty, disconnected letter with all its faults. It is so cold just now that I can scarcely feel pen or paper. Everything is very dear, and fuel costs at times an almost fabulous price. Owing to new arrivals, coal is now at thirty dollars [nearly £10] a ton. Once more I must beg you to excuse this letter, . , . and please reply with all possible expedition that I may know what to do.

May the Lord bless and prosper you. Continue to pray much for me, and may we all, sure of Jesus' love when everything else fails, seek to be more like Him.... Soon we shall meet where ... sorrow and trial shall be no more. Till then may we be willing to bear the cross, and not only to do but to suffer His will;

" The cold. was so great and other things so trying," he continued to his parents a week later, " that I scarcely knew what I was doing or saying at first. Then, what it means to be so far from home, at the seat of war, and not able to understand or be understood by the people was fully realised. Their utter wretchedness and misery, and my inability to help them or even point them to Jesus, powerfully affected me. Satan came in as a flood ; but there was One who lifted up a standard against him. Jesus is here, and though unknown to the majority and uncared-for by many who might know Him, He is present and precious to His own."





IT was April 4, a day long to be remembered in Shanghai on account of " the battle of Muddy Flat," an engagement between foreign troops and the Imperial soldiery. And a regular battle it was, the Chinese force amounting to fifty thousand men.

For some time the attitude of the latter had been increasingly menacing toward Europeans, several of whom, including Dr. Medhurst, had narrowly escaped with their lives. Under cover of operations against the native city, the Imperial Camps had been moved nearer and nearer to the Settlement, until the foreign community with all they possessed was well within range of. Chinese guns. Startled by the danger of their position, the Consuls agreed to require the removal of the camps to a greater distance, and when the time-limit having expired-their demand was not complied with, felt there was nothing for it but to open fire.

And then it was only too evident that the Chinese were prepared to resist. A sharp return fire poured upon the attacking force, many of whom fell before it. Still, superior discipline and arms carried the day, and the handful of Europeans, volunteers and marines from the gun-boats, succeeded in scattering the astonished army and setting fire to the deserted camps.

After this, relations were so strained that it was hardly safe for Europeans to venture beyond the protection of their own guns. At first, indeed, it seemed as though retaliation would be attempted, and the Settlement was barricaded and an extra gun-boat sent up. But no attack was made. The dislodged soldiery vented their rage upon the poor, defenceless villagers instead, and there the matter ended.

All this was not only a keen distress of mind to Hudson Taylor ; it did not a little to add to the trial of his position. For just before the battle of Muddy Flat the way had seemed more hopeful. He had made several excursions with older missionaries in the populous plain around Shanghai, and had been much impressed with the friendliness manifested. Everywhere the foreigners and their message seemed welcome, the distracted villagers finding in their presence some hope of escape from the cruelty of both Rebel and Imperial soldiers. This had encouraged the thought that away altogether from the Settlement he might find a home of his own right among the people. The danger involved would not have deterred him for a moment, and hardships would have been welcome that enabled him to -live within his income and be independent. Besides, he longed to be more in touch with the suffering poor around him, and to do what little he could to help them. With his teacher, he might be useful medically and in other ways, and still give a large part of his time to study. His hopes had risen with each fresh visit to the country, and he had been on the lookout for a suitable place in which to settle.

But now all this was at an end, and even preaching excursions had to be discontinued. Foreigners were obliged to remain strictly within the limits of the Settlement, and missionary work was much hampered in consequence. A journey Mr. Edkins had planned, in which Hudson Taylor was to have been his companion, had to be given up, greatly to the disappointment of both missionaries.

" Had we started as we intended," wrote the latter, " or had this affair happened a day or two later, we should probably have been seized and beheaded by the Imperialists in revenge. But God is ever with us. On His watchful protection we rely. He never forgets, never changes....

" It is of course impossible to go at. all into the country now, so there seems no chance of my getting a place of my own at present.... I would give anything for a friend with whom to consult freely. My position is so perplexing that if I had not definite promises of Divine guidance to count upon, I do not know what I should do. There is, I fear, no probability of my being able to keep within my salary under present circumstances. If I had quarters of my own I could live on rice (not bread, that would be too expensive) and drink tea without milk or sugar, which is cheap enough here. But that I cannot do now. Things are increasing in expense all the while and dollars are getting dearer. They were at six and a penny when last I heard, and if we are involved in further hostilities may rise to double that price and yet have no more purchasing, value. Well, He will provide... .

" They are building barricades in the Settlement to-day [April 8], and instead of seven roads into it are going to have only three or four. I think we are safe . . . but the poor people round us are in a sad state. My teacher said yesterday

"'I have great fear. Turning to the right hand I fear the Rebels, and on the left the Mandarin soldiers fill me with alarm. Truly these are hard times to live in.'

" What the poor man says is indeed true.... I tried to comfort him as well as I could. Nothing gives me so much delight as speaking even a few words for Jesus, and I hope I shall soon be able to do so more freely."

It may seem exaggerated, at first sight, to dwell much upon the trials of Hudson Taylor's position. True he was at the seat of war, but as far as circumstances permitted he was living in safety and even comfort. He was so well off, apparently, that one wonders at the undertone of suffering in his letters, until a little consideration reveals another side of his experiences. The assistance received from Dr. Medhurst and other L.M.S. missionaries was of the greatest value, and yet it gave rise to a distressing situation. If he had belonged to their Society and had been preparing to work with and for them, nothing could have been better. But as it was, he felt almost like an unfledged cuckoo-an intruder in another bird's nest. That his companionship at every meal in solitary tete-a-tete was somewhat wearisome to his generous host, he could not but feel. Not that he received anything but kindness from Dr. Lockhart and his associates. But he was not as they were, highly educated and connected with a great denomination and important work. The preparation providentially ordered for him had been along different lines, and his religious views made him singular, while his position as a missionary was isolated and open to criticism.

He had been sent out, hurried out almost by his Society, before his medical course was finished, in the hope of reaching the Rebels at Nanking. Misled by optimistic reports about the Tai-ping Movement, the Secretaries of the C.E.S. had taken a position that to practical men on the field seemed wholly absurd. It is just as natural for missionaries to be critical, apart from restraining grace, as for others, and it was not long before Hudson Taylor discovered that the Chinese Evangelisation Society, with its aims and methods, was the butt of no little ridicule in Shanghai. It was keenly painful as The Gleaner came out month by month to hear it pulled to pieces in this spirit, although he could not but acknowledge that many of the strictures were deserved. This did not make it easier, however, for the Society's representative in that part of China, especially when for the time being he was dependent upon those who spoke and felt so strongly.

He realised the weaknesses of the C.E.S., or was coming to, no less clearly than they did ; but he knew and respected many members of the Committee, and to some (including the Secretaries) he was attached with grateful love. This put matters in a very different light. Fellowship with them in spiritual things, at Tottenham and elsewhere, could never be forgotten, and even when feeling their mistakes most keenly he longed for their atmosphere of prayer, their love of the Word of God and earnest zeal for souls.

The influence of the world was tremendously strong in Shanghai, even in missionary circles. It was the heyday of the Settlement, as regards financial and commercial opportunities. True, a temporary check had been imposed by the local rebellion, and it was still a question as to how long the disturbed state of things might continue. But the native city once again in the hands of the Imperialists, business would boom and the price of land go up, carrying all commercial undertakings forward on a flood-tide of success. And so it proved before twelve months were over. Many a fortune was to be made in Shanghai in those days, and lavish expenditure on luxury, with its attendant evils, were to be found on every hand. Among the Europeans hardly a man of advanced age was to be seen, for it was a new world to Western enterprise, entered only within the last twelve years. 1 {1 The Treaty of Nanking, opening the " Five Ports " to Western commerce, had only been signed twelve years previously, in 1842.}

Those were the good old times when every Englishman in China was youthful, the great firms princely, the hospitality unbounded, and the prospect of achieving fortune with ordinary industry and luck appeared to every young fellow as assured. 2 {2 Sir Thomas Sutherland, G.C.M.G. ; article entitled "Far Eastern Shipping, Fifty Years Ago," in The London and China Express for November 27, 1908: Fiftieth Anniversary Number. The next paragraph continues : Exchange was constant at not less than .4s. 6d. for the dollar and 6s. 8d. for the tael. The current rate of interest was twelve per cent. per annum. Alas 1 a change came over the spirit of the dream a few years later, when the telegraph reached China and the centre of gravity in trade was in large measure transferred to Europe. No longer could China merchants store their silk and teas in London with the tolerable certainty that if they held their merchandise long enough the price would rise to meet their demands. Following the telegraph, the opening of the Suez Canal and the rapid development of steam-shipping changed completely the character of Eastern trade. But I am anticipating events that were undreamed of in China or India fifty years ago." }

Such a state of things was not without its effect on the missionary community. The great expense of living necessitated increased salaries ; and it was unavoidable that there should be a good deal of intercourse with government officials, to whom the missionaries were useful as interpreters, and with officers from the gun-boats stationed-, at Shanghai for the protection of the Settlement. Without finding fault with anything or any one in particular, there was a general spirit of sociability that surprised Hudson Taylor a good deal. It was not what he had expected in missionary life, and fell far short of his ideal.

He himself, on the other hand, did not entirely accord with the current conception of what a missionary should be. He was bright and fairly educated, but had no university or college training, had taken no medical degree, and disclaimed the title Reverend given him at first on all hands. That he was good and earnest could easily be seen ; but he was connected with no particular denomination, nor was he sent out by any special Church. He expected to do medical work, but he was not a doctor. He was accustomed, evidently, to preaching and an almost pastoral care of others, and yet was not ordained. And strangest perhaps of all, though he belonged to a Society that seemed well supplied with funds, his salary was insufficient and his appearance shabby compared with those by whom he was surrounded.

That Hudson Taylor felt all this, and felt it increasingly as time went on, is not to be wondered at. He had come out with such different expectations ! His one longing was to go inland and live among the people. He wanted to keep down expenses and continue the simple, self-denying life he had lived at home. To learn the language that he might win souls was his one ambition. He cared nothing, nothing at all about worldly estimates and social pleasures, though he did long for fellowship in the things of God. With a salary of eighty pounds a year, he found himself unable to manage upon twice that sum. So he was really poor, poor and in serious difficulty before long ; and there was no one to impress the fact upon the Committee at home or make them understand the situation.

Then too he was lonely, unavoidably lonely. The missionaries with whom he lived were all a good deal older than himself, with the exception of the Burdons who were fully occupied with their work. He could not trespass on their kindness too frequently, and having no colleague of his own found it impossible to speak of many matters connected with the Society and future developments that were on his heart. Soon he learned to mention such affairs as little as possible, but he did long for some one with whom to bring them before the Throne of Grace.

Much as he felt his position, however, it was well for the young missionary that he could not hive off just then or attempt to live on rice and tea minus milk or sugar. He would have done it had he been his own master. He would have done anything along lines of self-sacrifice to make the money given for missionary purposes go as far as possible. But in that unaccustomed and trying climate it would have been a dangerous experiment during the hot season. And more than this-were there not higher purposes in view in the providential limitations imposed upon him at this time ? He longed to be free and independent, and the Lord saw fit to keep him in the very opposite position, letting him learn from experience what it is to be poor and weak and indebted to others even for the necessaries of life. For His own, His well-beloved Son there was no better way ; and there are lessons still that only can be learned in this school.

But for such circumstances early in his missionary career, Hudson Taylor would never have been able to feel for others as it was necessary he should. By nature he was resourceful and independent to a fault. He had sacrificed, as we have seen, the hope and ambition of years, breaking off his medical curriculum before he could obtain a degree, simply that he might be free to follow the guidance of the Lord as it came to him personally, untrammelled by obligations even to the Society with which he was connected. And now at the very opening of his new life in China, he found himself cast upon the generosity of strangers, shut up to a position as little welcome, possibly, to them as to himself, and from which there seemed for a long time to come no hope of escape.

As spring advanced, his journal gave evidence of more trial and depression of spirits than could be attributed to the climate. His eyes, never strong, became inflamed through the sunshine and excessive dust, and he suffered also a great deal from headache. In spite of this he worked at Chinese on an average five hours every day, besides giving time to necessary correspondence. To Mr. Pearse he wrote as fully as possible, trying to supply information that would interest readers of The Gleaner, as well as detailed statements of the condition of things around him with a view to the future conduct of the work.

From these letters one sees how much he was beginning to feel the monotony of a young missionary's life, occupied mainly with study. There was little of interest to write about, now that he was practically restricted to the Settlement, and it is clear that he was passing through that stage of weariness and disillusionment in which so many, drifting away from the Lord, lose spiritual usefulness and power. What, missionary does not know the temptation at such a time to let go higher ideals and sink to the level about one? Prayer becomes an effort and Bible reading distasteful, and the longing creeps in for stimulus of some kind-if it be only that of gossip or novel-reading. Then the way is open for a fault-finding, critical spirit, for dissatisfaction and irritability, and gradually for worse backsliding still. And all this, so often, has its first beginnings in the almost unendurable monotony from which the young missionary finds it difficult if not impossible to escape.

" Pray for me, pray earnestly for me," wrote Hudson Taylor to his mother early in April, " you little know what I may be needing when you read this."

And to Mr. Pearse a few days later: May the Lord raise up and send out many labourers into this part of His vineyard and sustain those who are already here. No amount of romantic excitement can do that. There is so much that is repugnant to the flesh that nothing but the power of God can uphold His servants in such a sphere, just as His blessing alone can give them success.

Thanks to good judgment and sensible home-training, Hudson Taylor was in less danger than many young missionaries during those months of language study. From early childhood he had been encouraged, as we have seen, to take an interest in " nature study," his butterflies and insects being always housed with consideration though at some cost to his parents in their limited surroundings. This stood him in good stead, for now he not only knew the value of such recreation, but also how to take it up.

" Ordered a cabinet for insects," runs the journal for April a5, " and worked at Chinese and photography.

" April 28: Very warm again. Worked at Chinese five hours. Had a bad headache all day. Caught a few insects as a commencement of my collection.

" April 29: At Chinese six hours. After dinner took a walk in search of nocturnal insects. Had some difficulty in getting into the Settlement again, the gates being closed."

" To-day," he wrote to his mother in May, " I caught sight of a large black butterfly with swallow-tail wings, the largest living butterfly I have ever seen. . . . At first I thought it must be a small bird, although it seemed to fly so strangely. But when it settled on a tree and I saw the splendid creature, it nearly took my breath away .. . it was so fine !

" I intend also to collect botanical specimens, but at present have no convenience. . . . There are some trees here that have a strange look to our eyes, being covered with blossoms before a single leaf appears. Among the wild plants I see many old friends-the violet, forget-me-not, buttercup, clover, chickweed, dandelion, hemlock, and several common herbs. There are also wild flowers that are new to me and very pretty."

In addition to working hard at Chinese this summer he was diligently keeping up other studies, medicine and chemistry especially, that he might not lose the benefit of his hospital course. The classics he gave as much time ' to as possible, and he seems always to have had some useful book on hand dealing with history, biography, or natural science. The following is a typical entry in a journal letter to his sister

Before breakfast read Medicine, then Chinese nearly seven hours. After dinner, Greek and Latin exercises, each an hour. After poring over these things till one can scarcely see, it is a comfort to have a fine, clear, large-type Bible, such as Aunt Hardey gave me, It is quite a luxury. Well, all these studies are necessary. Some of them, the classical languages of Europe, ought to have been mastered long ago ; so it is now or never with me. But the sweetest duties of the day are those that lead to Jesus-prayer, reading and meditation upon His precious Word.

Summer was now upon them-those hottest months of the year when one lives in a perpetual Turkish bath, and mosquitoes, prickly-heat, and sleeplessness have to be reckoned with, as well as a temperature that for weeks together scarcely falls below 80° F. at night. It is easy to write about it, but who that has not lived through such days and nights can imagine how much grace it takes to bear the discomfort and distress without. irritability, and keep on steadily with work when all one's courage seems needed just to endure.

All through this trying season, however, Hudson Taylor kept up his studies, never falling below his average of five hours at Chinese every day. Once or twice he went into the country with Mr. Burdon, risky as it was to attempt it.

" These are troublous times," he wrote, " but we must do something "

And their faith that the Lord would help them was rewarded by the welcome met with from the village people, who were only too glad to see them out again.

" I think I may say I have one friend now," he added, telling of a happy evening with Mr. and Mrs. Burdon after one such excursion. " But I do not want to go over there too often, as I am only one of his circle and he has a wife for company. I feel the want of a companion very much. The day is spent with my teacher, but my evenings generally alone in writing or study."

Letters, of course, were a great comfort, and much time was given during his first year in China to correspondence. Strangely enough the months of June and July brought him the peculiar trial of hearing nothing from home mail after mail when he was especially longing for news. How this happened never quite appeared, for he had been written to regularly, but the letters never reached him, or if they did it was out of their proper order and long after they were due. This, combined with the great heat and the effects of a brief but serious illness, tried him to a degree that can only be understood by those who have been in similar circumstances.

" When last mail came in," he wrote to his mother in the middle of June, " after walking a mile and a half to the Consulate on a broiling hot day and waiting nearly two hours, which lost me my `tiffin' or midday meal, I had the pleasure of bringing up letters and papers for every one at the Mission except myself. When I found there really was nothing for me, the disappointment was so great that I felt quite sick and faint and could scarcely manage to walk home, for it was reported that we should have no other mail for six or eight weeks."

Another trial of those summer months, and one he felt still more keenly, was his financial position, overlooked apparently by the Society. The first quarter since his arrival in China was now at an end, and on making up his accounts he was more than troubled. His balance in hand was so small that it would be necessary to draw again very soon, and he had already spent more than a hundred and thirty dollars. At that rate his salary would be exhausted before half the year was over, and what would the Committee say and think ?

With anxious care he explained to Mr. Pearse every item in these accounts, the first he ever sent home from China, revealing touching details as to needs he had not supplied because of his desire to save expense as far as possible.

" I feel quite oppressed when I think of what a cost I am to the Society," he wrote, " and yet how little good I am able to accomplish."

And just then, to add to his perplexity, news reached him in a round-about way that seemed a climax to his troubles. The Society was sending another missionary to Shanghai, and not a bachelor like himself, but a married man with a family. Dr. Parker, a Scotch physician who had applied to the C.E.S. before Hudson Taylor left England, was already on his way to join him and might be expected in a few months. Glad as the young missionary would have been of such tidings under other circumstances, with Shanghai in the condition in which it was the outlook was cause indeed for concern. Dependent himself for shelter upon the generosity of others, what arrangements could he make for a married couple with three children ? He hardly dared mention it to those with whom he was living, and yet the news would soon be the talk of the Settlement whether he kept silence or not.

Anxiously he awaited letters from the Committee explaining the situation. Surely they would send him notice, in view of all he had written, of such an addition to their staff, and instruct him fully how to act. But mail after mail came in with no reference to Dr. Parker's coming. Repeated requests for directions as to how to arrange for himself had as yet received no answer, and before summer was over Hudson Taylor saw that he must act on his own initiative.

Meanwhile comments and questions were not wanting that made the position more trying. " Is it true that a medical man is about to join you, with a wife and family? When did you hear it ? Why did you not tell us ? Have you bought land? Why do you not begin to build?" And so forth ! To all of which no satisfactory reply was forthcoming. At first in his perplexity Hudson Taylor suffered as only a sensitive nature can ; but when the talk was at its worst and the summer heat almost unbearable, the Lord himself drew near and comforted him.

" As you know," he wrote to Mr. Pearse in July, " I have been much tried since coming here, `pressed beyond measure' almost at times. But the goodness of God is never-failing ; and the last few days I have enjoyed such a sweet sense of His love, and such a personal application of some of the promises as though they were written or spoken directly to me, that the oil of joy has indeed been given me for mourning. I feel sure that dear friends in England have been specially remembering me in prayer, and I am truly grateful. Oh, continue to pray for me ! I am so weak that difficulties seem overwhelming, and oft times I have to cry with Peter, `Save, Lord; I perish.' But never does that cry go up in vain. He has a balm for every wound, and is always ready to calm the troubled waters of the soul. I long much for the time when I shall be able to spread the knowledge of His grace among this people in their own tongue. May that time be hastened and an effectual door opened before me.. :

" I hope I may be able to find a home of some kind for Dr. and Mrs. Parker on their arrival, though I cannot see how or where it will be. All the houses seem more than filled already, and new missionaries are expected out. I think it seems necessary that you should at once consider and decide upon the question of building. If we are to establish a Mission in Shanghai there is no alternative. No one can have a greater objection to building than I have, or see its disadvantages more clearly. But the question lies at present within narrow limits. There is only a given space in which we are permitted to live, i.e. the Settlement, and in it all the houses are occupied or shortly will be. We may or may not find those who, having been at the expense of building for themselves, are willing to accommodate us for a time, to their own inconvenience ; but this cannot be a permanent state of things, Those who are best able to judge see no hope of a restoration of peace for years to come ; but we are all very shortsighted when we look into futurity."

The more he thought over the situation, the more he felt that there was nothing for it but to seek a native house in the Chinese part of the Settlement, in which to receive the travellers who were drawing nearer every day. So in spite of overpowering heat and his lack of a sedan-chair, he set about the weary search once more. It was four or five months now since he had hunted for quarters on his first arrival without finding even a room available, and if anything the conditions seemed worse than before. Nothing he could begin to think of was to be found, and but for a growing rest of heart in God, Hudson Taylor would have been almost in despair. As it was, he was learning precious lessons of his own helplessness-and of Almighty strength.

To Miss Stacey in Tottenham he wrote during those August days: How sweet is the thought that we have not an High Priest who cannot be " touched with the feeling of our infirmities," but One who was " in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin." Nothing is more sure than that we are wholly unable to sympathise with those in whose circumstances we have never been placed. How delightful then is the reflection that though our friends can only in part enter into our joys and sorrows, trials and discouragements, there is One ever ready to sympathise to the full ; One to whom we have constant access, and from whom we may receive present help in every time of need.

This has been such a comfort to me when thinking and perplexed as to a residence not for myself only but for Dr. and Mrs.. Parker. In the present state of Shanghai this is no easy problem, there being neither native nor foreign houses unoccupied. But I have much to be thankful for. Our dear Redeemer had not where to lay His head. I have never yet been placed in that extremity.

One who is really leaning on the Beloved finds it always possible to say, " I will fear no evil, for Thou art with me." But I am so apt, like Peter, to take my eyes off the one Object and look at the winds and waves. As in that scene, however, the grace and tenderness of Jesus are as apparent as Peter's little faith, so with us to-day as soon as we turn to Him, " He giveth power to the faint, and to them that have no might He increaseth strength." While we depend entirely on Him we are secure, and prosper in circumstances apparently the most unfavourable. . . .

Oh for more stability ! The reading of the Word and meditation on the promises have been increasingly precious to me of late. At first I allowed my desire to acquire the language speedily to have undue prominence and a deadening effect on my soul. You see from this how much I need your prayers. But now, in the grace that passes all understanding, the Lord has again caused His face to shine upon me.

And to his sister Amelia he added, two days later; I have been puzzling my brains again about a house, etc., but to no effect. So I have made it a matter of prayer, and have given it entirely into the Lord's hands, and now I feel quite at peace about it. He will provide and be my Guide in this and every other perplexing step.

" Quite at peace about it "-with such serious difficulties ahead ? A situation he could not meet, needs for which he had no provision and no possibility of making any, a problem he had puzzled over until he was baffled, and to no effect ! " So I have made it a matter of prayer," is the simple, restful conclusion, " and have given it entirely into the Lord's hands. He will provide and be my Guide in this as in every other perplexing step."

Yes, that is how it ever has been, ever must be with the people of God. Until we are carried quite out of our depth, beyond all our own wisdom and resources, we are not more than beginners in the school of faith. Only as everything fails us and we fail ourselves, finding out how poor and weak we really are, how ignorant and helpless, do we begin to draw upon abiding strength. " Blessed is the man whose strength is in Thee " ; not partly in Thee and partly in himself. The devil often makes men strong, strong in themselves to do evil-great conquerors, great acquirers of wealth and power. The Lord on the contrary makes His servant weak, puts him in circumstances that will shew him his own nothingness, that he may lean upon the strength that is unfailing. It is a long lesson for most of us ; but it cannot be passed over until deeply learned. And God Himself thinks no trouble too great, no care too costly to teach us this.

Thou shalt remember all the way which the Lord thy God led thee these forty years in the wilderness, to humble thee and to prove thee and to know what was in thine heart.... that He might make thee know....

Yes, " all that long, wearisome, painful experience, infinitely well worth while in the sight of the Eternal, if it produced one moral, spiritual trait in the people He was educating :-what a scale of values ! "

At which point in our meditation, fresh light was thrown upon all this from the eighty-fourth Psalm, by an aged saint drawing upon the fulness of his own experience. 1{1 The beloved and now departed Herr Inspektor, C. H. Rappard-Gobat, Director of the " Pilgrim Mission " of St. Chrischona, near Basel, himself in early years a foreign missionary.}

"Speaking to my students one day," he said, " I asked them `Young men, which is the longest, widest, most populous valley in the world ? ' And they began to summon up all their geographical information to answer me.

" But it was not the valley of the Yangtze, the Congo, or the Mississippi. Nay, this Jammerthal, as it is in our German, this valley of Baca, or weeping, exceeds them all. For six thousand years we trace it back, filled all the way with an innumerable multitude. For every life passes at some time into the Vale of Weeping.

" But the point for us is not what do we suffer here, but what do we leave behind us ? What have we made of it, this long, dark Valley, for ourselves and others ? What is our attitude, as we pass through its shadows ? Do we desire only, chiefly, the shortest way out ? Or do we seek to find it, to make it, according to His Promise, ` a place of springs ' : here a spring and there a spring, for the blessing of others and the glory of Our God ?

"Thus it is with the man `whose strength is in Thee.' He has learned the preciousness of this Jammerthal, and that these dry, hard places yield the springs for which hearts are thirsting the wide world over.

" So St. Paul in his life. What a long journey he had to make through the Valley of Weeping !

"'In labours more abundant, in stripes above measure, in prisons more frequent, in deaths oft. Of the Jews five times received I forty stripes save one. Thrice was I beaten with rods, once was I stoned, thrice I suffered shipwreck, a night and a day have I been in the deep. In journeyings often, in perils of waters, in perils of robbers, in perils by mine own countrymen, in perils by the heathen, in perils in the city, in perils of the wilderness, in perils in the sea, in perils among false brethren. In weariness and painfulness, in watchings often, in hunger and thirst, in fastings often, in cold and nakedness. Besides those things that are without, that which cometh upon me daily, the care of all the churches.'

"A long journey indeed through the Valley of Weeping; but oh, what springs of blessing! What rain filling the pools! We drink of it still today. "

And is not this the meaning, dear reader, of your life and mine in much that is hard to be understood? The Lord loves us too well to let us miss the best. He has to weaken our strength in the way, to bring us into the Valley of Weeping, the empty, humble and prove us, that we too may know that our strength, every bit of it, is in Him alone, and learn as Hudson Taylor did to leave ourselves entirely in His hands.

So your Valley of Weeping shall become "a place of springs." Many shall drink of the living water, because you have sufferede, trusted, conquered through faith in God. You go on your way as He has promised, to appear at last in Zion, rejoicing before God; and in the Valley of Weeping remains for those that follow many a well, still springing up in blessing where your feet have trod.

Chapter 18 - Building In Troublous Times, August- November 1854

It must have seemed almost too good to be true when only two days after the preceding letter was written Hudson Taylor heard of a house, and before the month was over found himself in possession of premises large enough to accommodate his expected colleagues. Five rooms upstairs and seven down seemed a spacious residence indeed; and though it was only a native house, build of wood and very ramshackle, it was right among the people, near the North Gate of the Chinese city.

It did not all come about, however, as easily as the statement is made. Between August 9 and 21 he learned many a lesson of patience, for in China these arrangements are compassed with difficulty. The house first heard of was not the only finally obtained, nor was the price first demanded one that he could or would give; and between the two lay much weary negotiation that had to be carried on through interpreters and deepended the debt he was already under to his missionary friends.

So much labor and difficulty in accomplishing so ordinary a transaction opened his eyes to what really constitutes a large part of the trial of missionary life. He was reading at the time The Hand of God in History, and wrote to his sister who had given it him:

What a very different thing it is to review the aggregate success of Missions and missionaries over many years from taking part in the process itself with all its trials and discouragements. But let us be comforted. So will it be for us too at last. One smile from Him we love will repay all the sorrows, and leave a clear balance to the good of whatever has been accomplished.

" Oh Amelia," he continued when difficulties were at their worst, " one needs an anchor for one's faith . . . and thank God we have it ! The promises of God stand sure. `The Lord knoweth them that are His.' How easy it is to talk about economy, the high salaries of missionaries, and all the rest. But there is more than one missionary here who hardly knows how to manage to make both ends meet. Well, if we want a city, there is one we can turn back to. But no, we will be pilgrims and strangers here, looking for a better home, `that is an heavenly,' ` whose builder and maker is God.' Oh that those around us had the same hope ! .. .

" You ask how I get over my troubles. This is the way. . . I take them to the Lord. Since writing the above, I have been reading my evening portion. The Old Testament part of it happens to be the 72nd to the 74th Psalms. Read them as I have if you want to see how applicable they are. I don't know how it is, but I seldom can read Scripture now without tears of joy and gratitude... .

" I see that to be as I am and have been since my arrival has really been more conducive to improvement and progress than any other position would have been, though in many respects it has been painful and far from what I should have chosen for myself. Oh for more implicit reliance on the wisdom and love of God ! "

But even when the agreement was signed and sealed, much yet remained to be accomplished.

" My house has twelve rooms," he wrote doors without end, passages innumerable, outhouses everywhere, and all covered with dust, filth, rubbish and refuse. What all the outhouses have been for I cannot imagine. There are no less than thirty-six of them, none of which I want or shall use. I have been getting a whole batch of doors fastened up, for however well it may suit a Chinaman to have six or eight ways into his house, it does not please me at all just now. I see how to arrange it so that with one pair of gates I can shut off the dwelling itself from all the outhouses. Indoors there are two staircases of a sort. One of these I am having removed and the trap-door screwed down.

" The five upstair rooms are side by side, each communicating with the others by double doors . . . so that the middle rooms have not much privacy. This set of apartments I shall whitewash and fumigate thoroughly . . . taking one for a bedroom and another for dining-room and study. Once there I must dig away at this fearful Shanghai dialect with its eight tones, for which I shall need a new teacher. He will probably occupy some of the downstair rooms, which not being raised above the ground are of little use for foreigners."

But it was one thing to talk about cleaning the house and going into residence, and quite another to accomplish it, as Hudson Taylor was to prove. He had had no experience so far of the unsupervised Chinese workman, and the discovery of his characteristics was discouraging. On August 22 for example, in spite of overpowering heat, he got a few men to clear the place and remove rubbish enough, as he said, " to have bred a pestilence." Early next day he was on the scene again and discovered his men absorbed in watching the bricklayers, never dreaming of setting to work themselves. Having found them plenty to do, he went to inquire about a box expected from Hong-kong. Returning in an hour, what was his surprise to find one man writing, another smoking and the rest asleep. The third time he came it still seemed as though nothing had been done.

" So I have brought over my desk and a chair," he wrote that afternoon, " to remain on the premises ... and even so they perpetually relapse into idleness. I say, for instance, `Now this must be thoroughly washed.' For a while there is a noise of splashing, but soon all is still. I go to see ... and the man looks quite astonished when I remark that only the outside has been cleaned. 'Oh,' he replies, `you want within-and-without washing.' ` Yes,' I say, ` I do,' and return to my letter for a few minutes. Amusing though it may seem at first, this kind of thing becomes wearisome, especially when one can get nothing else."

Though trying enough in its way, all this was the least serious part of the new life he was undertaking. The unavoidable outlay weighed on his mind far more. Furnish as sparingly as he might and live as frugally, he seemed to be spending a great deal on himself. At home he had been a collector for Missions, and knew what it was to receive the hardly-earned pence of the poor. And now, against all his own inclinations, to be using missionary money in ways that seemed to him so lavish was indeed a trial. He would not have felt it so keenly had he been directly engaged in missionary work, but when he could do nothing but study it was almost more than he could bear.

" To save the expense of a sedan," he wrote to his mother, " I have tried staying indoors altogether during the great heat, or walking out only in the evening ; but several attacks of illness as well as threatenings of ague have warned me to desist. . . . No one, I am sure, can be more anxious to avoid expense than I am ; but if we are to live here at all we must accommodate ourselves to circumstances... .

" These things, sometimes make me cry with David, 'My flesh and my heart faileth.' But that is not his last word ; and by grace I too can add,' God is the strength of my heart and my portion for ever.' Though often cast down . . . I am where I would be and as I would be-save for more likeness to Christ and more familiarity with the language."

Still more serious than the question of expense, however, was the danger involved in his intended move. Not only was he leaving the Settlement, to live entirely alone among the Chinese, he was going to a house very near the Imperial camp and within range of the guns of both parties. It was a position as he well knew of considerable danger, but no other residence had been procurable and the time had come when something must be done.

" The Chinese house to which I am removing," he wrote to a friend, " is in a dangerous position, being beyond the protection of the Settlement and liable to injury from both Imperialists and Rebels. The former have threatened to bum the street, and the latter have two cannon constantly pointing at it. My teacher who comes from a distance dare not go there, and as I cannot get another who speaks Mandarin at present I shall have to commence the study of the Shanghai dialect. . . . As I can talk with my present teacher tolerably well, it is a trial to lose him and commence again from the beginning. But as there is no hope of being able to go to Mandarin-speaking districts for several years, and the Shanghai dialect I can use as I learn it, this too no doubt is wisely ordered. At any rate I am thankful that my way is hedged up on every side, so that no choice is left me. I am obliged to go forward. . . . And if you hear of my being killed or injured, do not think it a pity that I came, but thank God I was permitted to distribute some Scriptures and tracts and to speak a few words in broken Chinese for Him who died for me."

In this spirit, then, Hudson Taylor bade farewell to the kind host who for six months had afforded him a home, and on August 30, near the North Gate of the native city, set up housekeeping on his own account. In spite of trouble, expense, loneliness and danger, it was good to feel that he could begin a little work on his own account. And the Lord who knew the heart of His servant, responded to his longings after usefulness and blessing, meeting him at the outset of this new pathway with rich compensations of His grace. In the solitude that was now his lot, the soul began to revive again and grow. The blessing of the far-away days at Drainside seemed to come back. He lived his own life as then, the simple self-denying life that made brighter spiritual experience possible. It was now September, almost a year from the time he had left home, and his joy in being able to do something for the people round him was very great. His new teacher, happily, was an earnest Christian, and able to conduct morning and evening worship to which all who came were made welcome. After this there were patients to see, visitors to entertain and housekeeping to attend to, in all of which Mr. Si was indispensable. But his pupil was rapidly learning useful terms and polite phrases, as well as carefully chosen sentences in which to convey the Gospel. On Sundays they went out together to distribute tracts and preach in the crowded streets. The dispensary was making many friends, and when a day-school was added both for boys and girls they had no lack of occupation. Before long, Si had to give all his time to these operations, and another teacher was engaged for the language. And then, with everything in working order and his heart full of the blessing of the Lord, Hudson Taylor began to taste some of the real joys of missionary life.

To this period belongs a letter to his parents which shews the cheerful, natural spirit in which he was working.

NORTH GATE, SHANGHAI, September 20, 1854.

MY DEAR FATHER AND MOTHER-Whether you weary of my letters or not, I cannot but write them, . . . and I will take it for granted that this one at any rate will be welcome, as it is to inform you that the experiment made in coming to this house has been so far successful, and that now though not doing much I am at any rate doing something. I am glad also to say that I get on with the Shanghai dialect much better than I at first expected.1 {1-" The idea of commencing a new dialect," he had written a mouth before (August 18), " is rather overwhelming, one being a tolerable dose But if you mean to learn Chinese, you must not say, ' Can I do it?' but ' can and will, by the blessing of God.' " ... The only thing that has really troubled me has been the outlay I have had to make and that my current expenses are so great. But this is unavoidable. On first coming here I was disposed to economise at the risk of usefulness and health, but I see now that one cannot do this with impunity ; and as I have no desire to be sent home useless within two or three years, with considerable doubt as to my ever being able to return, I have been led to consider that proper care on these points is in the long run the truest economy.

The Chinese house I am occupying is as good as can be obtained, and though the neighbourhood is undesirable one gets accustomed to it. If I feel lonely or timid at night, I recall some sweet promises of Divine protection, turning them into prayer, and invariably find that they compose my mind and keep it in peace. I do not neglect any precaution for safety ; but keep a light burning all night and have my swimming belt blown up, so that at a moment's notice I could take to the water if necessary-the planks forming the bridge between me and the Settlement being removed at dark... .

And now I must tell you what I am doing. First then, I have commenced a day-school with ten boys and five girls. Three more boys are promised and will be coming shortly. The teacher, Si, is a Christian and very useful, as he preaches well in the local dialect. The school opens and closes with a Scripture lesson and prayer. At present I cannot do much with the children, but every day increases my power to make myself understood. As I sit in my study and hear their voices chanting over their lessons, it fills me with thankfulness I cannot begin to express. . . . I often wish Amelia were here to take charge of the girls and gather in others. There are plenty to be found who are by no means improved by being at liberty in this neighbourhood, young as they are, for it is a bad one. On this account, if I have to go out after dark, I always take a servant and lantern.

Secondly, the dispensary. I have not laid myself out for medical work, but every day brings some patients. To-day for example, being wet, only ten have come. I am gradually learning Chinese terms for ordinary diseases, symptoms, etc., and the expressions needed in questioning patients and telling them how to take our medicines ; and I find that though the amount of work I get through may seem small, the labour attending it is considerable.

Thirdly, our services. From the very first day in this house, 1 have had family prayers night and morning. At these times the servants, teachers, Si's family and any others who like to come in are present. We have had as many as twenty. To-day we had nine in the morning and ten at night. Those who can read do so, verse about, and yesterday (the anniversary of my sailing from Liverpool) I commenced joining them. Of course I make blunders, and so do one or two others, but the teachers are there to correct, and by and by I shall do better. On several occasions also, Si has accompanied me into the city to distribute tracts and Scriptures. At these times, when we have gathered a few people together, Si has read a portion and explained it in a way that all could understand, ... so you see he is very useful. All these engagements take time, and with Chinese study occupy most of the day. I also find it necessary to do some reading in medicine, surgery or materia medica every day . . . and what with domestic matters and keeping a careful watch over everybody and everything, I can assure you I do not spend much time in bed-as I never go till I can keep awake no longer. The other day I had an interesting excursion to Woo-sung with Mr. Edkins and a young American missionary named Quaterman. We went by boat . . . arriving there at noon, with a large supply of Scriptures and tracts. These we distributed on many junks going northward, receiving promises from not a few captains and others that they would read them and pass them on to friends in the ports to which they were travelling.

Returning home in the evening well pleased with our excursion, we were puzzled to know how we should pass the Imperial fleet in safety. They are somewhat random with their fire after dark, and might easily have taken us for natives if not Rebel spies. Mr. Edkins came to the rescue, proposing that we should sing as we passed them, that they might know we were foreigners. The suggestion seemed good and the boatmen were pleased with the idea, the only objection being that as we had already been singing a good deal we had exhausted all the hymns and tunes we had in common and were more . than ready for a rest.

Having perfected our arrangements, we approached some ships we took to be the fleet, and passed them singing lustily. But just as we were about to congratulate one another on our success, the boatmen shouted to us to recommence, as we had been mistaken in what we supposed to have been the fleet and were just coming within range of their guns.

So we had to tune up again without delay, and sang " The spacious firmament on high," to that beautiful tune Creation. Unfortunately we concluded just opposite the largest ship of the fleet. It was now quite dusk.

" What next? " cried Mr. Edkins, as the alarm-gong struck on board the ship, " there is not a moment to lose."

He then commenced singing I know not what. Quaterman struck up a truly American tune to " Blow ye the trumpet, blow ! " while I at the same moment raised a third with all the voice I could command. The men on the warship were shouting loudly, our boat's crew outdoing them if possible, and the whole thing was so ludicrous that I could control myself no longer and burst into a fit of laughter most inappropriate to the occasion.

" Who goes there ? " was shouted from the Imperial ship.

" Peh-kuei " (white devils), yelled our men, while we cried simultaneously, " Ta Ing-kueh " (Great English Nation) and " Hua-chukueh," which means Flowery Flag Country, or America.

After a little further explanation we were allowed to pass, upon which my companions began to lecture the boatmen for having called us " White Devils." The poor men who had not yet received their day's pay were very penitent, and explained that they had been so frightened that they really did not know what they were saying and would be most careful to refrain from such expressions in future. As soon as we landed I set off for home, and found them just going to draw the last plank across the creek. Happily I got over in time, for I was fearfully hungry and tired.

My eyes, the lamp and paper alike inform me that I must be drawing to a close. But I must not forget to tell you that the other day a Sung-kiang man presented me with a couple of valuable crickets in a glass box. They require two freshly boiled grains of rice daily, and are kept on account of their song, which is quite different from the sound made by English crickets, and very pleasant.

And now Good-night, or rather Good-morning.-Ever my dear Parents, your affectionate son, J. HUDSON TAYLOR.

Mingled with joy in his new work, however, came unexpected trials, great and small - difficulties of household management, quarrels between his servants and the neighbours, anxiety about his cook who was laid up with typhus fever, disappointment with the second teacher who had to be dismissed, great discouragement about the language, and repeated attacks of illness that left him low-spirited and unfit to bear the strain of constant skirmishing so close at hand.

" There has been a great deal of fighting for several days," be wrote in the middle of September, " and the Rebels have been gathering at the bottom of this street. Of them I have little fear, but I hope there may be no counter-move on the part of the Imperialists... .Several cannon-balls have passed so near these premises as to make me feel some trepidation for the moment. It is easy to tell whether a gun is loaded or not, as the ball makes a whizz which once heard is not likely to be forgotten."

He was in real sorrow too over the illness of Mrs. Burdon, who had suffered a great deal since the birth of her little daughter three months before. Her husband was worn out with anxiety and nursing, and for them both Hudson Taylor felt deeply concerned. Mrs. Burdon had been his chief counsellor in beginning housekeeping. The very last time she went out she had helped him with necessary purchases, full of interest in all that concerned his moving to the North Gate. And now it seemed that she could not recover. Her love for those she was leaving and perfect submission to the will of God touched him unspeakably ; and as often as possible he went over to relieve Mr. Burdon, entering with a brother's sympathy into the anguish through which he was passing.

Beside all this, he was increasingly burdened about money matters, not knowing even yet how the Society would respond to his letters. Obliged to exceed his salary for the necessaries of life, he had made use of a Letter of Credit provided against emergencies, but was still uncertain as to how far his bills would be honoured. It was a painful position, and one that cost him many a wakeful night as well as many a prayer.

Thus September ended, and looking back upon it he could say: Though in some ways I never passed a more anxious month in my life, I have never felt before so conscious of God's presence with me. I begin to enjoy the sweet, peaceful rest in the Lord and in His promises experienced first in Hull. That was the brightest part of my spiritual life, and how poor at the best ! Since then I have been in a declining state, but the Lord has brought me back ; and as there is no standing still in these things, I trust to go on to apprehend heights and depths, lengths and breadths of love divine far exceeding anything I have yet entered into. May God grant it, for Jesus' sake.

One cannot but be impressed in reading the letters of this period with the sacred ambition of Hudson Taylor's prayers ; a subject worth pondering, if it be true that prayer moulds the life and not circumstances, and that as are our deepest desires before God so will the trend of our outward experiences be. Certainly nothing is more significant in the life before us than the longing for usefulness and likeness to the Lord he loved. Not honour or success, but usefulness, " widespread usefulness," was his constant prayer. Would he have drawn back could he have foreseen that the only way to its fulfilment was through the furnace seven times heated ? For much preparatory work had yet to be done. His prayers were indeed to be answered beyond anything he asked or thought ; but he must pray with yet fuller meaning, and go through with all the training needed at the Master's hands. The iron must be tempered to steel, and his heart made stronger and more tender than others, through having loved and suffered more, with God. He was pioneering a way in China, little as he or any one else could imagine it, for hundreds who were to follow. Every burden must be his, every trial known as only experience can teach it. He who was to be used of God to dry so many tears, must himself weep. He who was to encourage thousands in a life of child-like trust, must learn in his own case deep lessons of a Father's loving care. So difficulties were permitted to gather about him, especially at first when every impression was vivid and lasting, difficulties attended by many a deliverance to cheer him on his way.

As much of his usefulness later on was to consist in helping and providing for young missionaries, it is not to be wondered at that a large part of his preparation at this time had to do with financial matters and the unintentional mismanagement of the home Committee. He had to learn how to do and how not to do for those who on the human side would be dependent on him ; a lesson of vital importance, lying at the very foundation of his future work. Hence all this trial about a small, settled income and large uncertain. needs ; about irregularity of mails and long-unanswered letters ; about rapidly-changing opportunities of service on the field, and the slow-moving ideas and inaccessibility of Committees at home. He did his best, and the inexperienced Secretaries in London did their best also, as faithful men of God. But something, somehow, was wanting ; and just what it was Hudson Taylor had to discover, and later on to remedy. Seen in this light it need hardly be said a special significance attaches to his financial cares ; and the letters in which he tells at times so touchingly of the exercise of mind through which he was passing have an interest all their own. The iron-one sees it-was entering into his very soul ; but from this long endurance was to spring heart's-ease for many another.

At the risk of some repetition, the following letter is quoted for its value in this connection, and as showing how keenly he continued to feel the circumstances in which he was placed

NORTH GATE, SHANGHAI, October 17, 1854.

MY DEAR PARENTS-You wish to know all about my pecuniary as well as other affairs, so I am enclosing a copy of a list of expenses I am just forwarding to Mr. Pearse. As you will perceive, they so largely exceed the sum we were led to suppose would be sufficient (80 sterling pounds per annum) that I am sending full details, so that the Secretaries can see for themselves. I shall have to draw again this year, probably next month. I am not sure that I can get credit, for my authorisation from the Society does not exceed forty pounds a quarter, and if the agents here knew that I had just received a copy of the Committee's Resolution stating that they will not accept bills for more than that amount, of course it would be refused.

You will not wonder that anxiety about expenses and as to whether my bills will be honoured or not, added to the dangers of my present position, has proved rather much for me lately. . . . I have been very poorly for a fortnight . . . but am better now, though distressingly weak as yet. My cook has been ill with typhus fever for three weeks or more. I hope he is improving. He was better some days ago, but threw himself back by going contrary to explicit orders.

You will wonder what all those " discounts " in my list of expenses mean. They were paid on the Ferdinand dollars with which I was supplied in England, and that are not in regular circulation here. Chair-coolies, another item, are indispensable in the hottest weather. Their services were mostly required in seeking a house, and running to and fro from Dr. Lockhart's before I could get one. The water jars are for drinking-water, which has to be fetched from the river and being very muddy has to settle and have the organic matter precipitated by alum before it is fit for use. Of chairs I have only six, the cheapest usable ones I could get. The tables are secondhand. New, they would have cost much more. Crockery is the dearest item. The whole lot in England would hardly fetch ten shillings, for they are of many different patterns. The cups and saucers do not match, nor do the dishes and plates, while the vegetable dishes are again dissimilar. I had to take what I could get, and was thankful they were odd, for no one would have broken into a set... . As to fuel, how would you like to be paying six and sixpence a week for barely enough for the simplest cooking, the fire being put out as soon as done with, and have the prospect of the thermometer going down to r5° F. within two months ?

Everything is dear in Shanghai now, Chinese as well as foreign goods. Just to think that in seven months I have spent more than a hundred pounds ! Is it not frightful ? Two hundred pounds per annum will barely cover my expenses, unless the exchange falls, and other things too. The Church Missionary Society allows single men seven hundred dollars (about £210 at the present rate of exchange) beside paying rent, medical expenses, and a sum sufficient for Chinese teacher and books... .

Saturday, Oct. 21. It is very cold to-day. I am better than I was earlier in the week, but still far from well.... Fortunately I have been able to buy a second-hand stove for ten dollars that will burn wood. A new one would have cost thirty. And now having had another month's expenses to settle, I have only twelve dollars left. What can I do ? I must draw soon. And even if I can get a bill accepted here, I am in terror of its being refused by the Committee, which would put me in a pretty fix. I think and study night and day, and cannot tell what to do.

Last Wednesday night, a fire that seemed very near awoke me at three o'clock in the morning. Dressing hastily, I climbed on to the roof to ascertain if it were coming this way. Chinese houses like these, built only of wood, burn very quickly on a windy night. It was an anxious moment, for in the darkness I fancied the burning building was only four or five doors away. Just then, as I was praying earnestly for protection, it began to rain. The wind fell, for which I was most thankful, and gradually the fire smouldered down. But it was after five before I dared go to bed again.

While there on the roof, several bullets struck the buildings around me, and two or three seemed to fall on the tiles of my own house. At last a heavy ball struck the ridge of the opposite roof, carrying away a lot of tiles, the fragments of which fell around me, and itself flew off obliquely. You may be sure I did not wait up there for another . The day before a ball of that size, evidently spent, struck the roof of this house, broke some tiles, and fell at the feet of my teacher's child who was standing in a doorway. Had he been half a yard further out, it must have killed him. That was at noon.

I have never passed, as you will well believe, such a trying time in my life. But it is all necessary, and I feel is being made a blessing to me. I may have to leave here suddenly. . . . But whatever happens, I do not regret coming to this house, and would do it again under similar circumstances. Our Society must provide better, however, for its missionaries. This sort of thing will not do.

I must now conclude, trusting that the Lord, who is precious to me in my extremity, is proving Himself near also to you.-With love . . . Believe me, your ever-affectionate son, J. HUDSON TAYLOR.

That Resolution. of the Committee not to honour bills exceeding forty pounds a quarter caused more pain and perplexity to their solitary representative in Shanghai than they could at all realise.1 { 1- Based as it was upon his own correspondence, it was little wonder that this Resolution produced a painful impression on his mind. It hurt like a wound inflicted by one from whom he had expected sympathy. In a letter to Mr. Pearse of November 2, he expressed himself as follows " And lastly, in reference to the Resolution of June 29, 1854: your Board ought to be very careful how they bind their Secretaries to such a course in present times. Your missionaries are sent into a country in a state of revolution, where it is literally true that they know not what a day or an hour may bring forth. They should be well provided against contingencies before you adopt such an ultra measure, a measure that would at once and forever destroy their credit, if they have any, and compared with which their dismissal by the Society would not be severe. At any rate, if not accepted, such bills should not be positively refused before you hear the reasons which led to their being drawn. But more I need not say. Your hearts are in the work as well as ours, and I know you will excuse these remarks when you remember that half the world lies between us." } Crisp, sharp autumn weather had now set in, forecasting the bitter cold of winter. His Chinese house was not only unwarmed but unwarmable, draughts sweeping through it mercilessly, from unnumbered cracks and crevices. His blankets, only two in number, were fit for nothing but summer use, and all the clothing he had brought from. home was now so shabby that he was ashamed to be seen amongst other foreigners. Yet he had far exceeded his allowance, and dared not spend a penny save for actual necessaries. And to add to his perplexity he was driven to see that the house he had secured with so much difficulty in view of the arrival of the Parkers would not be a place they could come to even for a night.

" As to my position," he wrote on October 2, " it certainly is one of great peril. On two successive nights, recently, bullets have struck the roof over my head. How little difference in the direction of the gun might have rendered them fatal to me. But ` as the mountains are round about Jerusalem ' so the Lord is on every side to protect and support me and to supply all my need, temporal as well as spiritual. I can truly say my trust is in Him. When I hear guns fired near me and the whizz of the balls as they pass the house, I do feel alarmed sometimes ; but a sweet, still voice says inwardly, 'Oh thou of little faith, wherefore didst thou doubt ? ' Awakened suddenly in the darkness by the thundering report of guns from the North Gate which shake the house, and hearing gongs sounding and firearms discharging close at hand I have felt lonely, and my heart has palpitated painfully at times, not knowing whether my own house might not be the object of attack. But ` Lo, I am with you always,' has quieted the troubled waters and restored peace to my soul. One night I was roused from sleep by a strong smell of burning, and finding the rooms full of smoke was not a little alarmed, for I knew the Imperialists had threatened to burn all the suburbs as far as the creek. But it was only stubble burning in a field near by, and the windows being open the smoke had drifted in. Thoroughly ashamed of my fears I returned to rest with a very sweet sense of the presence of my Protector, the ` Watchman of Israel.' "

Three weeks later matters were even worse, and he wrote again to the Secretaries: There is a great deal of firing going on here now, so much so that I am seldom able to get half a night's sleep. What Dr. Parker and his family are to do, I do not know. Their coming here as things are now is out of the question. This constant anxiety for them as well as myself, together with another still more trying (the expense I am unable to avoid) is by no means a desirable addition to the difficulties of language and climate... .

We have heard nothing of the Swiftsure, but she is hardly due as yet. I shall be thankful when Dr. Parker is here and we are able to consult together about the future. You will find this a much more expensive Mission, I fear, than was anticipated. . . . I shall have to draw again this month, and with all possible economy cannot alter the high rate of prices. The total expense of my first year will be little under two hundred pounds, and even so I feel confident that there is no other missionary in Shanghai who will not have cost considerably more... .

Pray for me, for I am almost pressed beyond measure, and were it not that I find the Word of God increasingly precious and feel His presence with me I do not know what I should do.

But the Lord knew, and He had not forgotten His tried servant. At that very moment, when the Swiftsure was nearing the end of her long and perilous voyage, the Lord had a home in view into which to receive the Parkers and their children. He was not shut up to the house on the North Gate Street, though Hudson Taylor was ; and just in time, when lessons had been learned that He saw to be needed, the way was opened to a safer residence.

On the London Mission Compound, through the coming of a great sorrow, a little house stood empty that in comparison with Hudson Taylor's quarters offered a haven of security and peace. Shadowed as it was with the suffering of his dearest friends in China, he had not thought of it as other than their home. There he had found them in their early married life, rejoiced with them in the gift of a precious child, and shared the bereavement that in so short a time left her motherless. Then he had helped Mr. Burdon to leave the home from which the light had fled, and take his infant daughter to the care of the Chaplain's household. And still the little house at Ma-ka-k`iien stood empty.


IT is put before us as an evidence of the faithfulness of God that for those who trust Him He always has " a way of escape," that no trial may be greater than they can bear. Strong consolation this for the troubled soul ! And Hudson Taylor was to make full proof of it now in his extremity.

For extremity it really was, just after the foregoing letter had been written. Where to go and what to do he knew not, and the Parkers were drawing nearer every day. Without authorisation from the Committee or instructions from Dr. Parker himself, how could he venture upon the expense o( Mr. Burdon's house? And yet it was just what they needed, and might be lost by delay. He had no money to furnish, nor did he know where the rent was coming from ; but at the end of October, looking to the Lord for help and guidance, he obtained at least the refusal of the premises.

Meanwhile the situation of the native city was becoming desperate. The French, in defiance of international law 9 and treaty obligations, were openly taking part in the siege. Their soldiers, " bloodthirsty as tigers," seemed bent as slaughter, and the house at the North Gate daily witnessed scenes of almost fiendish cruelty. It became unendurable at last. The premises next door were deliberately set as fire, with intention to drive the foreigner out, and just at this juncture another offer was made for Mr. Burdon's house. Word was sent to Hudson Taylor that if he wanted it he must take it at once. And so, paying the rent out of his own meagre resources, a home was secured for the family so soon to arrive in the Settlement.

And then, providentially no doubt, he was urged to sublet half the premises. Another missionary was in distress, not knowing where to take his wife and children with safety, and for three rooms was thankful to pay half the rent. True the house was very small for two families, but it was a relief to have his financial obligations lessened and a comfort to be able to help somebody else. So with many regrets at parting from his school-children and neighbours, Hudson Taylor left the scenes in which he had commenced his first direct missionary work, and on Saturday, November 25, returned to a house shared with others on the familiar compound of the London Mission.

Two days later he was again at the North Gate to remove the last of his belongings, when he was recalled by a message from Dr. Lockhart. Hurrying back with many conjectures as to what the summons might mean, he found the doctor at lunch with a pleasant-looking stranger-none other than his own long-expected colleague Dr. Parker. So they had come at last ! And he was only just in time with arrangements for their accommodation.

At first in the joy of meeting and all the excitement of bringing up their belongings from the ship, Hudson Taylor had hardly time to realise how the narrowness of their quarters would strike his new-found friends. But when they were all in them, including the baby whose first appearance had been made at sea, the three rooms seemed even more crowded than he had feared they would be. Strong, sensible Scotch people, the Parkers were quite prepared to put up with hardships, and accommodated themselves to the situation as well as could be expected. But to Hudson Taylor it was a painful experience to have to reveal the pitifulness of his preparations.

If the rooms had been suitably furnished it would have been another matter ; but his Chinese bed, two or three square tables, and half a dozen chairs seem to have been all that he possessed. He had only just moved in on Saturday night, and had not had time to get into working order, and now the sudden advent of a family with all their paraphernalia made confusion worse confounded, and the despair of a thrifty housewife with three little children to provide for may be better imagined than described.

Oh, the trying, difficult days that followed, could they ever be forgotten ! For to make matters worse, the Shanghai community began to call upon the new arrivals, and those with whom Hudson Taylor was acquainted were not sparing in their comments upon what seemed his negligence.

It was all very well for him to live in Chinese style if he liked, and put up with a hundred and one discomforts. But people who knew what was what could not be expected to fall in with such ways. Why had he not furnished their rooms properly, and provided warm carpets and curtains ? Did he not know that children must be protected from the bitter cold of winter ? Had he no stoves in readiness, no proper supply of fuel ? Had he not written to tell them that they would need warm clothes and bedding on their arrival in November ? And as to unpacking and getting settled, how could it be done without shelves or cupboards, chests of drawers or book-cases in which to bestow their belongings ?

All of which was true, no doubt, and unanswerable ; for how could the young missionary let it be known that he had gone far beyond the limits of authorised expenditure in taking the house at all; that he had done it entirely on his own responsibility, and that after paying the first instalment of rent he had been left with only two or three dollars in hand, not enough to cover a week's expenses ?

His hope was, of course, that Dr. Parker would be supplied with all that was necessary, and would be the bearer of instructions from the Society about Mission headquarters in Shanghai or elsewhere, as well as some more satisfactory arrangement for financial transactions in the future. The very reverse, however, was the case. Dr. Parker had nothing with him but a few dollars for immediate use. He was expecting a Letter of Credit to be awaiting him in Shanghai, understood to have been sent off before he left England. As to supplies, they had abundance of clothing for the Tropics, but had not been at all prepared for cold weather, so that the children were in immediate need of winter outfits. And for the rest, nothing had been said about how they were to live and work in Shanghai, or in what way their salary was to reach them. All this they seem to have taken ,for granted that Hudson Taylor would be able to arrange.

No special anxiety was felt as yet, however. A large mail was waiting their arrival, and among the letters would doubtless be one containing the document on which so much depended. The Secretaries had assured Dr. Parker while he was still in London that his Letter of Credit, if not already on its way to Shanghai, would be there long before his own arrival. But on going through his mail no trace of it appeared. Carefully they read and reread the letters, but although it was taken for granted that he would be at the end of his journey when they reached him, there was no mention whatever of money-matters, or how his needs were to be supplied. The Letter of Credit had evidently been overlooked and forgotten.

Happily another mail was due within a day or two, and that no doubt would put matters right. In the meanwhile, they were thankful for the little preparation Hudson Taylor had been able to make, and with his few dollars and their own laid in a small supply of what was indispensable.

The mail came in. Yes, there were letters from the Secretaries dated September 15, more than three months after the Parkers had left London. There seemed to be no enclosures ; but perhaps they had sent the Letter of Credit direct to their Shanghai Agents, and would mention having done so. No, nothing was said about it. There was positively no allusion to the matter. What could be the meaning of such an omission ? To Dr. Parker it seemed inexplicable. But Hudson Taylor, with more experience of the working of things, was not altogether surprised, and found it less easy to be hopeful, though he acceded to the only suggestion that could be made, that they should go at once to the Agents and enquire. Dr. Parker was satisfied that this must bring a conclusion to their difficulties, so with a light heart as far as he was concerned they presented themselves at the office of Messrs. Gibb, Livingston and Co.

Hudson Taylor had had dealings before with the manager of this firm, and though he had found him a friend in need on more than one occasion, it was not possible to forget the sarcasm of some of his remarks, nor the emphasis with which he said, " the management or rather mismanagement of your Society is very bad." It was with some trepidation, therefore, he introduced Dr. Parker and asked if any advice had been received as to his Letter of Credit.

" No," answered the manager promptly, " none."

" Was it possible," queried Dr. Parker, " that they had heard nothing from the Society as to the amount he was entitled to draw ? "

" It was more than possible," replied the manager, " to judge by past experiences" ; though when he saw how this information was received, he was inclined to be more sympathetic.

Painful as the position was in itself, it was rendered still more so by the necessity they were under of explaining matters to this comparative stranger, with his prompt, efficient, business-like ways, upon whom for the time being they were dependent. If he had not seen fit to advance them money upon such evidence of their genuineness as they could afford, they would have been reduced to sore straights indeed. But his friendliness, both then and after, was the Lord's way of answering their prayers, and providing for them in the absence of the Letter of Credit that for long months did not make its appearance.

Dr. Parker said little about all this, but he must have felt it keenly, and probably all the more so as he came to realise the tempting possibilities opened to him as a medical man in China. How easily he could have supported his family in comfort, had he been willing to turn aside from missionary work. But in spite of poverty and many privations, prolonged all through the winter, spring, and following summer, he and Mrs. Parker held on their way with quiet self-sacrifice that never wavered.

From the first Sunday after landing, he went out regularly with Hudson Taylor to evangelise in the city or surrounding villages, and frequently made longer excursions, giving away tracts and attending to simple ailments, while others more familiar with the language did the talking. And at home in their crowded quarters, he devoted himself assiduously to study. How difficult it was in that small house, shared by another family, no one who has not laboured at Chinese under similar circumstances can begin to imagine. Poor Mrs. Parker did her best to keep the children quiet. But there were three of her own, besides those of the American missionaries, and she often had to go downstairs to attend to household affairs or receive visitors. The lower apartment being necessarily devoted to the uses of drawing-room and dining-room in one, there was nowhere for the doctor to study, a difficulty that could only be met by his sharing Hudson Taylor's room next to the nursery. What they did with their Chinese pundits does not appear. But if both teachers had to work with their respective pupils in that one small chamber, separated only by a partition from a busy mother and three little children, one can well understand Hudson Taylor's difficulty in preserving an unruffled spirit.

" No one who has not experienced it," he wrote, " can understand the effect of such incessant strain on mind and body. 1 {1- Though written at the North Gate house just before the arrival of the Parkers, what he said then seems even more applicable a little later.} It makes one so nervous and irritable that we sorely need your prayers as well as our own to enable us at all times to manifest a proper spirit.

How gracious of God thus to keep us from being deluded into supposing that we are free from the evils that belong to fallen nature, and to make us long the more earnestly for the time when we shall see our blessed Master and be perfected in His likeness. Thank the Lord, there does remain a rest for us. I am so apt to grow weary and selfishly wish I were there, instead of desiring only to do His will and wait His time ; to follow the footsteps of Jesus and finish all that He will give me to do. Indeed, the work of grace seems only just begun in my heart. I have been an unfruitful branch, and need no small amount of pruning. May these present trials result only in blessing, preparing me for more extensive usefulness here and a crown of rejoicing hereafter."

" The continued strain to which I have been subjected of late," he wrote in another letter, 1-- { 1 To his intimate friend Mr. B. Broomhall, dated November 19, 1854.}" has caused a degree of nervous irritability never before experienced, requiring the greatest watchfulness to prevent the manifestation of an unsuitable spirit before those by whom I am surrounded. What a solemn thing it is to be a witness for God, sent into the midst of heathen darkness to show forth in our lives all that by our words we teach. . . . Pray for me that I may have more grace, humility and reliance on the power of God, that I - may prove henceforth more efficient, by His blessing, in this holy service."

Somewhat different in tone though not less humble in spirit was the first letter addressed to Mr. Pearse after the arrival of Dr. Parker and .his family. In addition to their own difficulties about which he had to write, Hudson Taylor was suffering from imprudent statements in The Gleaner calculated to give serious offence to the L.M.S. missionaries in Shanghai ; " men who," as he put it, " however much you may differ from them in judgment, are more thoughtful for the shelter and support of your missionaries than the Society that sends them out . . . if not more wishful."

" I trust you will not deem it unkind or disrespectful of me," he continued, " to write thus. For though I feel these things and feel them keenly, were it not for the sake of others and the good of the Society I would pass over them in silence. To do this, however, would be unfaithfulness on my part. For not only is it morally wrong and thoughtless in the extreme to act as the Society has acted towards Dr. Parker, but you must surely see that men who can quadruple their salary by professional practice, or double it by taking a clerk's berth will not be likely, if they find themselves totally unprovided for, to continue in the service of the Society. I do not make these remarks with respect to Dr, Parker, who seems thoroughly devoted to the work and by his spirit has encouraged me not a little. But they are true none the less. And I may add that a vacant post at £20o a year, the whole duties of which would not occupy two hours in the evening, did look inviting to me at a time when I had been obliged to incur a responsibility of £120 for rent, and a Resolution upon my last letter to the Committee informed me that missionaries drawing more than was authorised would not have their bills honoured by the Society.

" Dr. Parker arrived on Monday, a week ago to-day, calling forth true gratitude to God for deliverance from the many dangers that had beset their path. Of course he found our half of the house nearly empty, as my few things did not go far in furnishing. The missionaries, when they discovered this lack of preparation, blamed me very much. Could' I. tell them that having paid nearly twenty pounds for rent I had only three dollars left . . . a sum not sufficient to purchase provisions for a week at the present high rate of prices ?

" Fortunately Dr. Parker had a few dollars, for which, however, we had to give twenty to thirty per cent discount to get them into cash. He was not a little surprised to find that Mr. Bird's communication contained no Letter of Credit nor allusion to one. And when I learned that he had none with him, I was no less astonished that my last letter from the Society did not bring it, as you expressed the expectation that by the time of its arrival he would be here.

" The following day we were cheered by receiving another letter from you, dated September r5, but the . . . expectation that it contained the all-important document was soon turned to dismay when it proved that hope deferred was all there was to live on. Now you cannot but see, I am sure, what evidence this is of gross neglect. We do, at any rate. And while we both cherish the warmest and most affectionate regard for many members of the Committee personally, and especially for its Secretaries, we cannot but feel that the Society had acted disgracefully.

" We went to Messrs. Gibb, Livingston and Co., for Dr. Parker felt sure that you had communicated with them, as Mr. Bird promised to do (if it were not already done) when he asked for his Letter of Credit. But they had heard nothing of it, and we could get no money. I asked if any alteration had taken place in my Letter of Credit since the Society augmented my quarterly allowance, but was informed that they had heard nothing of it. To relieve us of our painful embarrassment, Mr. - offered on his own responsibility to cash a Bill for my extra £20, if I would write requesting him to do so, enclosing a copy of that part of your letter which authorised it, and get the extract signed by two merchants. This I have done. He also promised on our producing evidence from the Society's letters or magazines, to cash a Bill for Dr. Parker, endorsed by me, if I would assure him that it was right to do so. But when we went with the necessary papers we found them so busy that they could not attend to us until Tuesday (to-morrow).

" The weather is now exceedingly cold, and not having been led to expect it the Parkers needed an immediate supply of warm clothing. Beds and other articles of furniture were also necessary, as well as food and firing, all of which run into a considerable sum. Though he has said little, I am sure Dr. Parker has felt it keenly. I do trust that you will avoid such occurrences in future, that your missionaries may be spared unnecessary suffering."

Difficulties notwithstanding, they tackled their work bravely, and between long, busy Sundays among the people, settled down as well as they could to study. It was almost impossible to concentrate attention upon the language at this time, for the condition of the people around them was heart-rending. Hundreds were dying of cold and starvation, and there seemed no hope of relief until one side or other could win a decisive victory.

For still the Rebels would not yield, although the French in violation of their promised neutrality were taking sides more and more against them. A French frigate and steamer stationed opposite the native city deliberately cut off supplies that might have come to it by water, while on land the same end was served by a massive wall built and guarded by French forces. All this, it was becoming evident, was part of a Jesuit policy bent on supporting the reigning dynasty. For the Tai-pings and other insurgents were confessedly hostile not only to idolatry in all its forms, but to Roman priest-craft and image-worship, and to the growing habit of opium-smoking. If success crowned their long and desperate struggle, Romanism as well as opium and idolatry were bound to fall before them, and this was known at the Vatican as well as at the Court of St. James. First the French, therefore, and later on the English lent efficient aid to the Imperial cause, and the activity of the former in Shanghai at this time was the beginning of the foreign interference which ultimately led to the suppression of the Tai-ping movement. Whether this was on the whole a benefit to China is a question beyond the scope of these pages, but what does concern us here is the added misery and suffering that Hudson Taylor and his colleagues were compelled to witness

" From the present aspect of affairs," wrote the former, " I think it all but certain that the French will shell and take the city before long.... If they do it will be an awful affair, for there are thousands of innocent people in the city who will suffer with the guiltiest of the Rebels. It is heart-rending to see and hear what we must from day to day ; and to think of the horrors yet to be endured makes one sick and faint. Oh, when will Jesus come and put an end to all this sin and misery! "

One opportunity Hudson Taylor had of trying to avert the final catastrophy. He had gone into the city to obtain permission for his teacher Si to bring out some members of his wife's family, and was talking with the Rebel leader, Chin A-lin, when a letter was brought in from the English and American Consular authorities. The letter was read aloud and interpreted to the general in the young missionary's presence. It urged upon him the duty of saving the lives of the helpless and innocent people for whom he was responsible, and offered to undertake to have matters peaceably settled on condition of an immediate capitulation upon the best terms the Imperial party could be prevailed upon to make. Hudson Taylor seems to have been the only foreigner present, and realising the issues at stake he did his best to persuade the irate general to consider the letter favourably. -

" I had a great deal of conversation with him," he wrote on the day in question, December 11, " and endeavoured to induce him to accept the mediation proposed.... But he seemed desperate, and would not hear of capitulation, declaring that he would fight to the last and die if need be, but not alone. Dusk compelled me to leave the city, as there seemed no hope of influencing him for the better."

Ever since the arrival of Dr. Parker, this open interference on the part of the French had been rousing the hatred of the Rebel soldiery. Their attitude was becoming menacing, and the Chinese who favoured their cause, both in and around the Settlement, were plotting revenge upon the whole European community. This made evangelistic work both difficult and dangerous, and might not unreasonably have formed an excuse for lessened activity for the time being. But as far as the missionaries on the L.M.S. compound were concerned it had no such effect. Dr. Medhurst and his-colleagues still planned and carried out their excursions to the interior, as well as constant evangelisation in the neighbourhood of Shanghai ; and Dr. Parker made many visits in company with Hudson Taylor to towns and villages within a radius of ten or fifteen miles. Down the Hwang-pu River they went, and up the creeks and canals where shipping congregated, everywhere searching out serious and intelligent persons with whom to leave Scriptures and tracts. In this way in the month of December alone they distributed many hundreds of New Testaments and Gospels, together with a still larger number of tracts explaining the way of life.1-{1- During October, November and the first part of December, Hudson Taylor distributed, with help from Dr. Parker, more than eighteen hundred New Testaments and Scripture portions and two thousand two hundred Christian books and tracts.}

" These have been given with all possible care," wrote Hudson Taylor to the Committee, " and in most cases to men whom we knew were able to read. A considerable number were taken on junks travelling to the northern provinces."

But before the year closed an opportunity came for more aggressive efforts. Mr. Edkins was about to pay his long-deferred visit to Ka-shing, and renewed the invitation to his young friend to accompany him. Eight months previously they had been stopped by the Battle of Muddy Flat, but now the way seemed open, and in spite of the threatening aspect of Shanghai affairs they determined to set out at any rate, and see what could be done.


IT was with no little interest, as may well be imagined, that Hudson Taylor made preparation for this first inland journey. In addition to clothes and bedding, a good supply of drugs and instruments had to be packed, for there was no knowing what demands might be made upon him as a medical man. Then there were food-baskets to be stored with provisions ; a stove, cooking utensils, and fuel to be provided ; and last but not least, an ample assortment of books and tracts. The native house-boat engaged by Mr. Edkins was happily large and clean. It had one tall mast with a sail in proportion, and a cabin capable of affording considerable shelter from wind and rain, without causing its occupants any concern as to want of ventilation." Here, then, their belongings were arranged as conveniently as possible, and commending themselves to the care and blessing of God an early start was made on Saturday, December i6.

They were absent the whole of the following week, and in city after city had wonderful opportunities for preaching the Gospel. Everything about their experiences, it need hardly be said, was memorable to Hudson Taylor-from the crowds that thronged them to the least detail of life upon the water, and the look of the low-lying country as it glided by, with its innumerable homes of the living and grave-mounds of the dead.

But that first night on the river had an interest all its own. Anchored amid a fleet of other boats, for mutual protection, they were out among the people at last as he had so often longed to be. Each boat had its family as well as crew, and cheerful was the clatter that went on while the evening meal was in preparation. Then came the little service in their cabin, when the dim light fell on faces full of interest in the old, old story. Born, brought up and married on the water, many among the boat-people never live ashore, and three generations may well have been represented in that evening meeting. Of the talk that followed we know nothing, save that it cannot have been much prolonged. Rising before daylight means retiring early, and soon the young missionary would hear nothing on all the boats around them but an occasional voice or movement and the gong of the night-watchman above the soft lapping of water along the shore.

With the turn of the tide after midnight, a stir began on the boats. Anchors were drawn up, sails hoisted, and junks got under way. As it was still dark our travellers slept on, awakening to find themselves within sight of Sung-kiang, a Fu city 1 {1 A Fu is the governing city of a prefecture (or group of counties), seven to fourteen of which go to make up a province. The word is also applied to the prefect himself and to the district he governs. So that the Sung kiang Fu (mandarin) resides in Sung-kiang Fu (the city) and from that centre controls the entire Sung-kiang Fu (prefecture).} some forty miles south of Shanghai.

Of their work in this place and others en route for Kashing we must not attempt to tell much in detail. A few scenes, however, may be touched upon as showing how the busy days were passed.

In a Buddhist monastery in the first city visited a poor recluse was living, a "holy man," walled up in a tiny chamber in which he had been practically buried alive for years. In the temple-courtyard a great crowd was gathered, listening to some strange religious teachers in the dress of Western lands. They were giving away books as well as preaching, and not until their supply was exhausted did they make a move to pass on. Some of the brotherhood then pressed forward, inviting them to rest awhile in the monastery, and especially to visit the " holy man."

Thus it was that Hudson Taylor saw for the first time one of these unhappy beings. Surrounded by the yellow-robed, shaven-headed priests, the missionaries were escorted to the cell. The only access to the poor devotee was a small opening left when the wall was in process of building, through which a man could scarcely pass his hand. There, almost without light or motion, unwashed, unkempt, and alone, the " holy man " passed his days and nights of silence. How strange must have seemed to him those voices with their foreign accent, and the pale faces of which he caught a glimpse through that little opening, his one point of contact with the outer world. Mr. Edkins, happily, could speak a dialect with which he was familiar, and very earnest were their prayers that the " glad tidings of great joy," heard under these circumstances for the first time, might bring light and salvation to his soul.

In the same city a very different experience awaited them, and one that made them appreciate the eighty-nine stone bridges to be found within its walls. Followed by a noisy rabble as they were seeking their boat, the visitors turned down a side street leading to a landing-stage, which they took to be that of the public ferry. To their dismay it was a private wharf protected by a pair of gates they had hardly noticed in passing. To return by the way they had come was impossible, for the narrow street was filled with an uproarious crowd, who, to prevent escape in that direction, swung to the gates and swarmed all over them, watching between the bars for the next move of the strangers. The position was far from pleasant in an unknown city, with the crowd growing larger and more noisy all the time, and no bridge in sight. But the missionaries quietly looked to the Lord in prayer, and kept their wits about them.

" There were plenty of boats at hand," wrote Mr. Taylor, " but none of them would take us. We called to several, to the great amusement of the crowd, but in vain.... At length seeing that something must be done I took `French leave,' jumped into a boat that was passing, and pulled it to the side for Mr. Edkins. Taken by surprise the men made no objection, and off we went to the chagrin of our tormentors who opened the gates and rushed to the waterside shouting tumultuously."

A first experience of trying crowds ; and he was to meet so many

Before leaving the city that night, a second or third supply of literature being all distributed, a turn in the road brought them suddenly on the base of the Square Pagoda. Grey and imposing the massive structure rose before them that for nine hundred years had been the glory of Sungkiang. The priest in charge consented to admit them, and soon the crowding of the streets gave place, to the sombre quiet of the old pagoda and the view to be seen from a gallery near the top.

Long and silently they stood looking down upon the myriad homes outspread before them. Far reached the ancient wall enclosing its hundreds of thousands, and beyond it the tent-like roofs still stretched away toward the setting sun. And this was only one great centre. All about it lay the rich, level country, dotted as far as eye could see with villages and hamlets, while distant pagodas and temples told of other cities within easy reach.

It was the first time Hudson Taylor had looked out on such a scene, and the fact of China's immense population began to assume new meaning from that hour. In the quiet of their boat that evening he was thinking of it still, pen in hand,

" I think you will join me sooner or later," he wrote to his friend Mr. Broomhall. " Consider the use you could be out here. Oh, for the sake of Him who loved you even unto death, leave all, follow Him, come out and engage in this all-important work."

More important than ever did their work appear next morning when the city of Ka-shan was reached. Could the young missionary ever forget the crowd that awaited them in one of its temple courts ? Having unintentionally disturbed a group of ladies engaged in idol-worship, the missionaries had retired to the pagoda, and upon returning found a sea of faces filling the courtyard, men of all sorts and ages eager to see and hear. For a long time Mr. Edkins held their attention, reasoning with them of sin, righteousness and judgment to come, while Hudson Taylor beside him laboured fervently in prayer.

The address finished and their books distributed, Mr. Edkins asked the crowd to make way for them to leave the temple, and they had just reached the main entrance when an imposing cavalcade arrived. To their surprise it soon transpired that the handsome, dignified official who stepped from his chair, and came down the avenue of soldiers to meet them, was no less a person than the Mayor of the city, intent upon turning back the foreigners. An anxious hour followed, but by explaining their object fully and promising not to go beyond the next prefectural city, the missionaries obtained permission to continue their journey.

" Your books are good," he admitted, " and you may take them as far as Ka-shing, provided some of my attendants accompany you."

And to this requirement he held firm, pointing out the men who were to "shadow " the foreigners. But it does not appear that their presence proved any drawback to the work in hand.

The sun was setting on the fourth day of their journey when at length the city for which they were bound came in sight. Far reached its suburbs along the river-bank, following the grey line of the turreted wall. Informed already as to its history, the travellers knew that Ka-shing Fu was far more ancient and important than any of the places yet visited. Dating from a dynasty that flourished twenty centuries before the Christian era, it had been contemporaneous in its early history with the cities of Abraham's time. Not until A.D. 888, however, had its present wall been built, four miles in circumference, with the moat that surrounds it still.

Despite its long history and many changes, Ka-shing at the time of this visit was a notable centre of wealth and learning. Printing and publishing employed many of its people, but the manufacture of silk and cotton, and a variety of articles in copper and brass, were also among its special industries. The population was vast, but in common with all other places removed by any distance from the Treaty Ports, it was wholly destitute of the Gospel.

Unspeakably thankful to have been able to reach a point so far in the " interior," the missionaries realised that great tact and caution would be needed in making the most of their opportunity. They had learned something already of the difficulties that might arise from showing themselves too freely on the crowded streets, and determined to work in the extensive suburbs rather than enter the city itself. Their presence would soon become known, and those who wished to obtain books or see them personally would have no difficulty in finding out their junk.

Immediately upon arrival, therefore, they went ashore, and before people had awakened to the fact that foreigners had appeared outside the West Gate, they had distributed a large number of tracts. But even so,

" Returning to our boat," wrote Mr. Taylor, " we unintentionally gratified hundreds of spectators ... including many ladies, elegantly dressed. But soon the gathering shades of evening emptied the windows and closed the doors. Boats ceased coming for tracts, the people went home for the night, and we ourselves were glad of a little rest."

Next morning they were up betimes, and even before breakfast made a good beginning in the Liu-li-Kiai, or TwoMile Street, bordering the Grand Canal. Whenever a crowd collected they passed on in their boat to another part of the river-bank, their movements being so quick that they were able to leave tracts along the whole length of this suburb before it became prudent to absent themselves for a time. This they did by poling round to the south side of the city, where a wide expanse of water and some picturesque islands formed a favourite pleasureresort. Here they were accessible to any who wished to follow them, and even if the crowds were large business would not be interrupted, nor the shopkeepers annoyed.

Little were they prepared, however, for the invasion of the Yen-yu Leo (Mansion of Smoke and Rain) that followed. Out in the middle of the lake, this attractive island was the place chosen by the Emperor K`ien-lung of the present dynasty for a summer residence, and the beautiful building and gardens preserved a. romantic interest, though falling somewhat into decay. Mooring their boat near the palaces now used as a temple, Mr. Edkins and his companion went ashore to see what was to be seen. But they themselves were the sight of supreme interest, as they soon discovered.

Before we had finished looking round we observed a number of boats putting off in our direction, and soon a regular ferry was established between the island and the opposite suburb. The people came in multitudes, and those who could read were quickly supplied with tracts. When a large number had collected, Mr. Edkins preached, and afterwards I had a long talk with some who gathered round me for books. By this time the numbers who had come were so great that we were obliged to go on board our boat, from which Mr. Edkins again addressed the people, to many of whom tracts were given..

As the crowd was continually receiving accessions, we thought it wiser to put off a little from the island, to prevent those who 'were behind from pushing the foremost into the water in their eagerness to see and hear. Immediately, however; the people followed us, and in the middle of the lake we were surrounded by boats and kept hard at work supplying the newcomers with portions of Scripture and tracts. As fast as one boat was supplied it pushed off and another took its place. It must have been a paying business for the boatpeople ! The boats were a better class than those commonly seen about Shanghai, and almost without exception they were sculled by women. Supplying tracts and talking without intermission proved tiring work as the afternoon wore on. But what joy it was to remember the promise that cannot be broken, " My Word shall not return unto Me void," and to think that not a few around us might shine forever like the stars of heaven in the Kingdom of our Lord.

Later in the day visits were received from several intelligent men who wanted to know more about the contents of the books they had received. Some were strangers from a distance, others Mandarins awaiting office, and one an Inspector of Grain in the Ka-shing district. These persons engaged Mr. Edkins in prolonged conversation, while Hudson Taylor continued supplying tracts from the deck. Not until evening was there any cessation in this work, and then boat-people and foreigners were alike weary and thankful for rest.

The following morning found them again near the Two Mile Street, as the island would not have been a safe anchorage for the night. After breakfast, and united prayer for blessing, they visited several smaller suburbs before moving off to the South Lake as before. Here the people began coming at once, and much of the day was occupied in preaching and seeing patients as well as in supplying literature, for which there was a great demand.

" We found no difficulty," wrote Mr. Edkins of the entire journey, " in distributing a full share of the Million Chinese Testaments."

In the course of the afternoon they spent an hour or two in a famous temple containing several idols of twenty to thirty feet in height. A most impressive view was obtained from the pagoda near at hand, and the brief respite for prayer that it afforded sent them back refreshed to the crowd below. Until evening they were again the centre of a busily-plying ferry-system on the South Lake, for only when dusk was falling did the last of their visitors row away.

A stormy night followed, ushering in a change of weather that put a stop to their work for the time being ; but not before one rainy day had been spent in conversation with specially-interested callers.

" Your words are true and your books are true," said some of these on leaving. " It is a good doctrine."


USEFULNESS was what they desired most of all, and it was natural that as the year drew to a close they should consult together and work out careful plans to this end. Dr. Parker, an able, experienced man, had a family to think of, and Hudson Taylor, young as he was, was becoming an efficient missionary. Nothing had yet been heard of the missing Letter of Credit, so that their perplexity with regard to money matters was extreme, and tidings that new missionaries of the L.M.S. were about to sail for China reminded them that even the premises they now occupied would have to be vacated before long. This it was that gave urgency and definiteness to their consultations, and resulted in several letters setting forth " plans of usefulness," that for the next few months largely occupied their thoughts.

" We who are on the field," wrote Hudson Taylor at the end of December, " desire to be as efficient as possible ; and while relying on the blessing of God alone for success, we wish to employ every means in our power to attain it. In this I know you are heartily with us, and I trust that by united prayer and effort and above all through the influence of the Holy Spirit we shall not be disappointed."

And then he went on to outline to the Committee the thoughts they had worked out.

To begin with, a permanent centre was needed and must be obtained without delay. Of the five Treaty Ports open to the residence of foreigners, none was more suitable than Shanghai-within reach of many important cities, and holding a strategic position with regard to mid-China. In Shanghai, therefore, their headquarters should be located. And the next step was equally plain : in Shanghai they must have suitable premises, and that at once.

This again necessitated a certain adequacy of method and equipment, for other missions were there before them, and had established precedents that could not be ignored. Plan as simply as they might, they would at least require a doctor's house and a school-building, in addition to hospital and dispensary. For a chapel they could wait, using meanwhile the receiving-room of the hospital, specially adapted for meetings. From this central station, their plan was to visit the surrounding country and establish branch-schools and dispensaries wherever possible. These would be regularly supervised by one or other of the missionaries, and would become in their turn centres of Christian effort.

It was all admirable no doubt, and the estimate of a thousand pounds for land and buildings was not immoderate. But it was based upon conclusions that in their case were misleading, and just because the good is often the enemy of the best would have thwarted their real life-usefulness, fore-ordained in the purposes of God.

But the letters were sent off, and the New Year given to prayer with these thoughts specially in mind. It was now the depth of winter and exceptionally cold. Hudson Taylor had bought a native boat for half its value, and on frequent excursions to the country was able to purchase fuel and provisions at a lower rate than in Shanghai. This with Mrs. Parker's thrifty housekeeping made such means as they had last as long as possible, but even so it was with difficulty that they could keep one room warm enough for study. Hudson Taylor was working hard at two dialects, a Shanghai teacher coming to him in the daytime, and his Mandarin-speaking pundit at night. He was also carrying on a school, encouraged to find himself well understood by the children.

" I trust that by the time I have been here a year," he wrote, " I shall be able to preach both in Mandarin and in the Shanghai dialect. . . . I should have been further advanced in the latter, of course, had I commenced it on arrival. But I begin to think that I was directed by a higher Wisdom in taking up Mandarin first, and trust that though some delay has been occasioned in getting into work, I shall in the end be fitted for more extensive usefulness."

Eager as he was to make progress with his studies, it was all the more remarkable that the need of the unevangelised regions round about should press so heavily upon his heart. Certainly it was not the season, of the year that tempted him to another journey, nor was it pleasant companionship, for he had to go alone. The condition of affairs, politically, might in itself have been sufficient to hold him back, for a crisis could not long be delayed in the siege of the native city. But little as he realised what it foreshadowed, Hudson Taylor found himself unable to disregard the appeal of the unreached. The ice was broken. He had been on one evangelistic tour already, and had seen how such work could be done. Perhaps it was this that drew him on ? Perhaps it was something deeper, more significant.

SECOND JOURNEY : January 1855 At any rate he set out on January 25, travelling in his own boat. A few miles south of Shanghai, a tributary stream was reached, leading to a district little known to foreigners. Lying between the Hwang-poo river and the coast, the region was one infested with smugglers, and even its larger centres of population had rarely if ever been visited with the Gospel. It was a favourite resort of desperate characters throughout that borderland between two provinces,1 -{1 The province of Kiang-su in which Shanghai is situated, and the province of Cheh-kiang immediately to the south, with Hang-chow and Ning-po among its well-known cities.} and might well have been avoided -by the solitary evangelist had he desired an easy task. Travelling oil far into the night, however, he was conscious of a Presence that precluded fear, and robbed the unknown of its possible terrors.

Far from promising must have seemed the awakening when they found themselves next morning frozen in between high, snow-covered banks, the water covered with a thick coating of ice. To the uninitiated it may sound interesting enough to pole one's way along such a river, breaking a channel for the boat a foot at a time. But any one who has spent long days and nights on a leaky junk, under similar conditions, will not be anxious to repeat the experiment, except for the ends Hudson Taylor had in view.

And these ends were in no wise hindered by the slow progress that was all they could make. Accompanied by a servant to carry books, the young missionary went ashore and walked from hamlet to hamlet. His dress, speech and occupation everywhere aroused the intensest interest, and great was the eagerness to obtain his beautifully bound and printed books. 1- {1-Pah-ko ts'ien ih pun, " Eight cash a copy," is a phrase that early becomes familiar to the missionary who in these days presents his Scriptures for sale rather than free distribution. And certainly they are a wonder at the price (one farthing), printed in clear, large type, and attractively bound in tinted paper covers.}That he was giving these away was not the least part of the wonder, and as village after village turned out to meet him, the schoolmaster or some promising student was put forward to secure as many as possible. It was casting bread indeed " upon the waters," but very definite was his faith in the promise, " It shall accomplish that which I please and . . . prosper in the thing whereto I sent it."

Two governing cities were visited on this journey, besides many villages, and a market-town whose population equalled that of both cities combined. It was lonely, trying work, for the people were rough, and the crowding dangerous, and in reading the journal one is surprised at the thoroughness with which it was done. Every street in Chwan-sha was visited, for example, and in each of the suburbs ; all the reading men he could find being supplied with Gospels and tracts. In several temples also addresses were delivered. There was no companion to fall back upon, and unless he preached himself the people might never hear. So looking to the Lord for help, Hudson Taylor made the most of his few sentences, following up long days ashore with hours of medical work and private conversation on the boat at night.

In Nan-hwei, 1-{1 Nan-hwei " Hsien," the latter word standing for a county-town or governing city next in importance to a " Fu."} the crowds were especially turbulent, and a Sunday spent there was memorable both to himself and the local authorities. Alarmed at the news that a foreigner was approaching, orders had been issued to close the principal gate of the city, and keep it locked and barred until after he had withdrawn. Knowing nothing of this defensive movement, Hudson Taylor spent the night outside a gate of secondary importance, unnoticed in his little boat, and early on Sunday morning passed in and went about his work. Meanwhile a sharp look-out was kept on the opposite side of the city, and it was a crestfallen messenger who bore tidings to the Ya-men 2 { 2- The Ya-men is the residence of the local Mandarin.}that the foreigner was already within its walls. Greatly taken aback, the Mandarin sent to learn all he could about the intruder ; and when it proved that he was alone and unarmed, a well-behaved person whose stay would be of short duration, his fears were dispelled, and the East Gate shortly after was reopened to traffic.

The excitement of the people, however, was not so easily allayed, and after a brave attempt at preaching Hudson Taylor had to retire before overwhelming crowds. Knowing that those who were interested would follow him, he took refuge on his boat at a little distance from the city. And a busy day he had of it-receiving the hundreds who came, supplying all who could read with Christian literature, giving medicines to the sick, telling over and over again the main facts of the Gospel, and answering endless questions as to personal matters. Several educated men paid him a visit, two of whom warned the boatmen that it was not safe for a foreigner to be in that district alone and unprotected. But Hudson Taylor, overhearing the conversation, assured them that he had no fear, for the Great God, Creator and Upholder of Heaven and earth, never fails to keep watch over those who put their trust in Him.

So real was this faith that he did not even hesitate, the following day, when urged to go he knew not whither to visit a dying woman. He had just completed a morning's work in the city, and upon reaching the boat found several men from a distance, one of whom had brought a chair and bearers to carry him back to see his suffering wife. They were all earnest in their entreaties that he would accompany them, so in spite of the risk involved in going off with entire strangers, the young missionary set out.

Mile after mile they hurried over the frozen paths until almost benumbed with cold he wondered whether it would be possible to get back that night. Even so he seems to have had no fear. Yet how easily the whole thing might have been a trap ! In that lawless part of the province, with the country in the disturbed state in which it was, nothing was more likely than that he should be seized and held to ransom, or even tortured and killed as a hated foreigner. But, as he had written home the night before

I knew that I was where duty had placed me, unworthy as I am of such a position, and felt that though solitary I was not alone.

The visit proved interesting when their destination was reached. The poor woman was suffering from dropsy, and though great relief could have been afforded under suitable circumstances, it was not possible to operate where she was. Mr. Taylor urged her husband to take her to Shanghai, regretting that he had no hospital into which he could promise to receive her ; and after making what arrangements he could for her comfort, he explained to them simply and fully the message he had come so far to bring. Of course all the village and surrounding hamlets turned out to look and listen, so that his audience was considerable, nor had they ever heard the tidings of redeeming love.

As he was leaving, the husband came up with a fine fowl tied by the legs, which he presented to the " foreign doctor," with many apologies for the insufficiency of his offering. And it was his turn to be surprised when the stranger begged him to set it free, saying with many thanks, that his medicine, like his message, was " without money and without price." Tired though he was on reaching the boat, he had the joy of knowing that in one more home and district the name of Jesus was as ointment poured forth-a sweet fragrance at any rate to God.

Two days later, on the last of January, he was leaving the market-town of Chow-pu, anxious to reach Shanghai that night. But though the boatmen travelled on till nearly morning, it was not until late on February 1 they dropped anchor at their starting-point. Then there were provisions to unload and carry home to replenish Mrs. Parker's supplies before Hudson Taylor could give attention to a matter that was specially on his heart.

A few weeks previously, three men of his acquaintance had been seized in the North Gate house, dragged out of bed in the middle of the night, and handed over as rebels to the local authorities. Upon hearing of it the young missionary had at once sought their release. But though assured that they would soon be at liberty, no charge having been proved against them, the poor fellows were only hurried from prison to prison, everywhere starved and tortured to make them confess alleged crimes. Again and again Hudson Taylor had appealed on their behalf, but as long as there was any chance of extorting money the case seemed hopeless. Now, returning encouraged from his journey, he went once more and to his great joy was successful. The men still lived, and before long he had the satisfaction of seeing them in such comfort as their homes could afford.

But how small a thing it seemed to relieve the sufferings of one group of people amid all the horrors that were going on ! Shanghai was in a worse condition than ever, if that were possible. After more than a year of desultory fighting, the Imperial forces seemed roused at length to take the city. A large new camp quite near the Settlement had cut off the last hope of relief on the landward side, and among the beleaguered garrison famine and disease were doing their deadly work. Terrible indeed was the strain of those days for foreigners and natives alike, for it was only too evident that a wholesale massacre would be the end of the tragedy before their eyes.

Even in the Settlement the position was one of danger. The attempts of the French to take the city had been unsuccessful, and by their manifest futility had impaired the prestige of all the European forces.

" It is openly announced," wrote Hudson Taylor on February 3, " that foreigners are no longer to be feared.... Added to this, the Imperial soldiers are nearer and more numerous than ever, their new Camp being hardly more than a stone's throw from this house. Dr. Parker has already told you of a ball and shell thrown into our compound. . . . So you see we are safe only as protected by Him who is the Shield as well as Sun of His people."

Still more threatening in some ways was the attitude of the rebel party. Their indignation at French interference knew no bounds, and had resulted in a Secret Society for purposes of revenge in which no distinction would be possible between one nationality and another. Alarming rumours were afloat of an attack to be made on the Settlement, and it was well known that should such plans be carried out no help could be relied upon from the Government soldiery, who would gladly see the foreigners massacred that they might share the spoils.

So they were anxious times indeed after Hudson Taylor's return from this second journey, and might well have hindered further aggressive work. But in the midst of it all he was quietly planning another preaching tour, to be taken in company with older missionaries.

THIRD JOURNEY : February to March 1855

Proceeding in a westerly direction, the little party seems to have travelled as far as Tsing-pu on their way to the Soochow Lake. Only the briefest record remains of this itineration, probably because it was curtailed by the fall of the doomed city. For they had not been absent many days when they saw from the top of a hill the smoke of an immense conflagration. So great a fire in that direction could mean but one thing. Shanghai was in flames ! And what of their families in the foreign Settlement ?

Setting out at once to return, their apprehensions were confirmed by Rebel soldiers who came seeking protection. This, of course, the missionaries, themselves defenceless, were unable to afford; and shortly after the poor fellows were taken and beheaded before their eyes. Sadly continuing their journey, they soon came upon abundant traces of the catastrophe that had taken place, and as they passed the native city had to turn away from sights of horror on every hand. But the Settlement was in peace. The uprising of the Triad Society had been averted, and the Imperialists, satiated with slaughter, were too exultant over their achievements to pay much attention to foreigners.

Thus ended in a holocaust of human lives the sufferings of the siege that had been in progress ever since Hudson Taylor's arrival in China, twelve months previously.

Shanghai is now in peace," he wrote on March 4, " but it is like the peace of death. Two thousand people at the very least have perished, and the tortures some of the victims have undergone cannot have been exceeded by the worst barbarities of the Inquisition. The city is little more than a mass of ruins, and many of the wretched objects who have survived are piteous to behold....

" How dreadful is war ! From the South to the North Gate of Shanghai, on one side only, sixty-six heads and several bodies are exposed by the sanguinary Imperialists, including those of old men with white hair, besides women and children. . . . These terrible sights are now so common that they do not upset one as they did at first. But it is impossible to witness them without feelings of intense abhorrence for the Government that permits and even perpetrates such atrocities."

Still the worst was over, and relieved from the strain of that terrible winter the missionaries looked forward to largely increasing their work. Surely now had come the moment for advance. Before the energy of the population round them, a new Shanghai would soon arise upon the ruins. Thousands of people would be flocking in to share the prosperity that enterprise and commerce would create. As far as possible they must purchase land before it was taken up, enlarge their schools, open preaching halls, found hospitals, and take a front rank among the builders of the new time.

All this, it goes without saying, stirred the hearts of Hudson Taylor and his colleague, still anxiously waiting the reply of the Committee. Three months had now elapsed since their plans had been laid before the Society, and communications that had crossed their own had not been encouraging. Old objections had been raised against building in the Treaty Ports, and arguments reiterated in favour of opening new fields to the Gospel. But how they were to live and work until this was possible the letters did not suggest. The missionaries themselves could not believe that this point of view was unalterable. They had stated the case so clearly that its importance must be felt, and surely when their well-considered scheme was laid before the Committee it would be seen to forward the very ends they had themselves in view.

Meanwhile it was more and more difficult to wait on in uncertainty. The American missionary who shared their little house was building premises of his own, but with no hope of completing them before summer. Dr. Parker's Letter of Credit had not come, nor did the Society seem to remember that he had any financial needs. If their privations through the winter had been severe, what would the hot season mean-the dreaded months of summer-in those crowded rooms ?

When all these circumstances are considered, and it is further taken into account that missionaries, even the most devoted, are only human after all, it will not be wondered at that some things were said and felt that hardly seem in keeping with Hudson Taylor's simple faith in God. He was passing through a period of peril for his spiritual usefulness, and was under the influence of friends called to a line of things entirely different from his own. But though carried away for the time, as may be seen from his letters, he was not allowed to involve himself in responsibilities that would have hindered his life-work.

" You are going to have a fine Chapel in Barnsley ! " he wrote to his parents in March. " I wish some wealthy friend would send us a thousand pounds to put up our hospital, school, and other premises, for we are in a shocking position now. With only three rooms to live in, we are obliged to set apart one for callers . . . so that my bedroom has to do duty as study for both Dr. Parker and myself, and I have no place to which I can retire for a moment's privacy from morning till night. . . . What we are to do when the hot weather comes, I cannot imagine.

" We have written to the Society laying a definite plan before them,_ and if they do not take it up we mean to try and carry it through without their aid. If they oppose it, as contrary to their principle of not working in the Ports, we must try to have the principle modified. And if they will not alter and we cannot find other better means of working, it may become a question as to which we shall dispense with-the Society, or our plans of usefulness.

" But you need be under no apprehension on this score.. Our plans will be formed with prudence, in the fear of the Lord, and not without seeking His direction, But useful we must and will be, if the Lord bless us, at any cost.

" Do you think a Bazaar could be got up anywhere, to assist us in the purchase of ground and erection of suitable buildings ? ... . If you could get the ladies interested, it would be sure to succeed.. The sum we want is really so trifling that a few good collections would soon raise either the whole or the greater part."

But side by side with this, which one cannot but see was unlike him, went another, very different development. Strangely the currents mingled at this time-one drawing him to the settled life of the Ports, the other carrying him far afield, to regions beyond any that had yet been reached. He could not even wait for the expected reply of the Committee, so eager was he to set out upon another evangelistic journey. The local Rebellion was at an end, Dr. Parker needed change from study, their boat was lying in the Creek -was it not just the opportunity for a preaching-tour which should include a good deal of medical work ?


Deeply interesting was the week that followed. Leaving Shanghai by the Soo-chow Creek they travelled north and west to the county-town of Kia-ting. Many busy places were passed en route, and remarkable openings found for the Gospel ; but limits of space will only admit of our dwelling upon the visit to the Hsien itself, where a novel experience awaited them.

Accustomed as they were to large, excited crowds, they hardly knew what to make of it when grown-up people as well as children fled in terror, so that the streets were literally cleared at their approach. Yet this was what happened in Kia-ting. No one would venture near them, and it was strange to see people of all classes hurrying to the nearest buildings as if for protection from imminent danger.

" Even men," remarked Dr. Parker with grave amusement, " took refuge in their houses as we drew near, hastily shutting the doors ; to which, however, they crowded to look after us as soon as we had passed."

So strong were these unreasoning fears, due to the " bogy stories " in circulation about foreigners, that it is doubtful whether any entrance could have been gained for more favourable impressions but for the influence of the medical work. They were there to heal the sick as well as preach the Gospel, and were wise enough to put it in this order until the hearts of the people were won.

Realising that in all probability they were the first foreigners to visit the city, Dr. Parker and his companion let themselves be seen as much and as openly as possible. They made it known that they were physicians, " able to prescribe for both external and internal complaints," and that on the morrow they would k'an ping, or " investigate diseases," providing each patient gratuitously with the appropriate remedy. This seemed to turn the tide of popular feeling, and as they went about the streets and made the circuit of the city-wall they heard many remarks as to their being span-yen, or " doers of good deeds." The crowds that followed them, still at a respectful distance, so increased that shop-fronts were in danger and the goods exposed for sale were trampled under foot. By retiring to more open parts of the city they were able to save the business-people annoyance, and at the close of a tiring day had the satisfaction of feeling that not a little prejudice had been overcome.

" Long before breakfast," wrote Dr. Parker of the following morning, " the banks of the river were crowded with persons desiring medical aid.... After working hard until 3 P.M., finding we could not possibly see them all, Mr. Taylor selected the more urgent cases and brought them on board the boat. No sooner were those attended to than we were taken to see patients in their own homes who were unable to come to us, and were much gratified to find that we had access to and were welcomed in some of the very houses the doors of which had been shut against us the day before."

What a turning of the tables in favour of the missionary and all due to ointments, pills, and powders, prescribed with sympathy and prayer. After this there was nothing but friendliness as they walked through the city, and they had all they could do during the remainder of the day to supply books to those who came for them. In a temple near the West Gate, a parting address was given to a large concourse of people, many of whom would gladly have detained the visitors. But time and experience alike warned them to leave while they were still welcome, in the hope of repeating the visit later. Even then they were not too weary to land at a neighbouring village before nightfall and seek out those who could read ; after which, travelling slowly on till morning, they were lulled to, sleep by the monotonous rhythm of the oar.

Throughout the remainder of their journey the value of the medicine-chest as an aid to evangelisation was still further proved in a variety of ways. This encouraged Dr. Parker not a little, as did also the eagerness of the people to obtain books and the relative number of those who could read. At one important city the missionaries were kept busy all day long handing Gospels and tracts from the boat to a steady stream of applicants.

" Never have I seen or imagined," wrote the Scotch physician," such opportunities for giving the Word of Life to those who seem anxious to obtain it."

Amongst others who came to them in boats were not a few scholarly men and officials, drawn through interest in the medical work. These visitors were in many cases friendly, and stayed long enough to gain a clear idea of what the missionaries were teaching.

In his report of this journey Mr. Taylor stated that with Dr. Parker's help he had distributed since the beginning of the year,1- {1 A period of only three months : January-March 1855.} three thousand New Testaments and Scripture portions, and more than seven thousand other books and tracts.

" The excursion from which we have just returned," he continued, " was particularly interesting on account of unusually good opportunities for seeing patients as well as scattering the good seed of the Kingdom, and for the illustration it afforded of the scarcely to be exaggerated value of medical work as an aid to missionary labour... .

" The crying need for a hospital was brought home to us afresh by cases in which life or limb could have been saved and chronic diseases relieved had we been able to care for the sufferers.... I sincerely trust that funds for this purpose, and instructions to purchase land and build without delay, are on the way to us ; for we could easily carry on efficient medical work without. interfering with our present operations. . . . The door is widely open and no man can shut it. . . . May our united prayers and efforts result in abundant blessings."

But though these accounts and others of later journeys aroused much interest at home, the thousand pounds needed was not forthcoming. Great indeed was the trial of this long waiting and uncertainty. But the Lord Who understood all that it meant to His servants did not leave them without tokens for good, two of which taking the form of financial help were especially encouraging.

Of these gifts in aid of the work, one was handed to Dr. Parker by a resident, and consisted of fifty dollars toward the purchase of land for a hospital. The other, received by Hudson Taylor himself, had a special interest as being the first that ever came to him apart from the Society for the cause so dear to his heart.

And when one records the name of the donor, Mr. W. T. Berger of Saint Hill, near London, what a vista is opened up into the providence of God. Mr. Berger, a frequent visitor at the Tottenham Meeting, had met the young missionary on one or more occasions before he sailed for China. From his friends the Howards of Bruce Grove and from Miss Stacey he would hear sufficient to awaken interest in the Yorkshire lad, an interest Hudson Taylor's letters from Shanghai could not fail to deepen. The result was this gift of ten pounds, thankfully appropriated toward the support of a child the missionaries were anxious to adopt ; a first step, as they hoped, toward a permanent boarding-school.

But how much more was in the plan of the Great Giver Could Hudson Taylor have foreseen how many hundreds, even thousands of pounds would come to him through the same channel, and the still more important gifts of counsel, sympathy, and brotherly love in the work he and Mr. Berger were to do together for the Lord, how amazed and overwhelmed he would have been ! But all this, and far, far more was being brought to pass by Him Who even then was working out His own purposes in the life of His servant, as in our lives to-day.


SPRINGTIME was drawing on apace, a season to be made the most of for evangelistic purposes, and the travellers had hardly reached home before Hudson Taylor was planning another journey. In the estuary of the Yangtze distant only thirty miles from Shanghai, lay the great island of Tsung-ming. Sixty miles long by fifteen or twenty broad, it was the home of more than a million people, covered at this time of year with blossoming peach-orchards amid a sea of early wheat. But though so near the foreign Settlement it was off the beaten track, and had never yet been visited by Protestant missionaries. Little wonder it attracted the young evangelist, about to set out with Mr. Burdon on a longer itineration than any he had yet attempted.

FIFTH JOURNEY : April 1855

Interesting as it would be to follow them as they crossed the rough waters of the Yangtze, ran up a creek on the landward side of the island, and in spite of alternate deluges of rain and overwhelming crowds carried on their work in the capital and other places, we must content ourselves with a mere outline of those busy days to dwell more at length upon the latter part of the journey.

Their plan on this occasion was to penetrate as far inland as possible, testing what could be done in a good many places rather than spending much time in any one ; and the direction chosen was the estuary of the Yangtze river.

Tsung-ming they found singularly open. In the chief city, bearing the same name as the island, they spent several encouraging days. All the principal streets and suburbs were visited, and in four large temples Mr. Burdon addressed the crowds. As inquiries had been made about them from the Ya-men, they felt it desirable to call upon the Mandarin who had probably anything but a favourable impression of foreigners. This official proved to be a grave though rather young man, who received them with courtesy. He accepted copies of the New Testament and other books, and listened attentively while they explained their contents, putting before him the way of salvation through faith in Christ. He made no objection to their visiting the island, and very thankfully they felt that this interview alone would well have repaid their coming to Tsung-ming.

The temple of the city-god was a busy scene during the remainder of that day. Mud or no mud the people came ; and while Hudson Taylor did his best to attend to patients in one of the side rooms, Mr. Burdon occupied the crowd with books and preaching in the open courtyard. Only when his voice gave out was the medical work interrupted ; for the greater part of his audience surged over to the improvised dispensary, and no more doctoring was possible.

Then it was Hudson Taylor's turn to take the field, and not being as tall as his companion he looked about for some sort of pulpit from which to see and be seen. The only place that presented itself was a bronze incense-vase of large dimensions, into which he clambered, without apparently giving offence to the temple authorities.

" At the lowest computation," he wrote, " five or six hundred persons must have been present, and I do not think it would be over the mark to say a thousand. As they quieted down, I addressed them at the top of my voice, and a more orderly, attentive audience in the open air one could not wish to see. It was most encouraging to hear one and another call out ... puh-ts`o, puh-tso, `not wrong, not wrong,' as they frequently did when something said met with their approval."

But when it came to distributing literature the missionaries had a more difficult task. They adhered to their principle of giving only to those who could read, though many illiterate persons were bent on getting books. This rougher element in the crowd gave them no little trouble, and both tact and patience were needed to avoid an unpleasant scene. Public opinion was on their side, however, and though some tracts and Gospels were snatched away, they succeeded in getting most into the right hands.

Heavy and continued rains made it difficult to keep on with such work. One whole day had to be spent in the little boat shared with their teachers-the mat roof leaking all over, and the low, windowless cabin affording neither room to stand nor even sit in comfort. It would have been useless to go ashore, for streets are empty and doors all shut during such a downpour. Yet a few people waded through mud and slush to get to them, carrying back a clearer understanding of the Gospel than they would have been likely to obtain but for this persistent rain.

Before leaving Tsung-ming city, one interesting morning was spent in looking up the principal schools, to leave Christian literature with both scholars and teachers. Thirteen schools and a college were visited, the pupils varying in number from nine to twenty-five. The teachers were in many cases intelligent men, able to give information as to the chief centres of population on the island. Followed as usual by a noisy crowd, one of the visitors had to stay outside to keep the excitement within bounds. But the other, seated in the place of honour within, had a comparatively quiet opportunity for laying the main facts of the Gospel before a small but influential audience.

After this it was a comfort as they went on their journey to fall in with an empty boat willing to travel with them. To this they transferred their books and Chinese helpers, which gave them room to take a little rest between excursions on shore wherever people were to be found. One busy place named K`iao-t`eo had 'an unusually large proportion of reading men, and in several schools and temples they were helped in delivering their message.

Rounding the north-west corner of the island a little later, they put into a creek in time for a quiet walk before nightfall. It was a beautiful evening, and the freshness and silence about them were grateful after the experiences of the past few days. Scattered homesteads here and there stood among cypress and willow trees, the park-like country stretching away without wall or fence to the horizon. Even the grave-mounds, usually so marked a feature of a Chinese landscape, were few and far between, being replaced by simple earthenware jars containing human bones. A million living. How many millions dead ? And yet Tsung-ming, as far as they could learn, had never before heard the glad tidings of Salvation.

" We went back to our boats," wrote Hudson Taylor, " rejoicing that we had been privileged to bring the word of God ... to the people of this fertile island.... We determined also to sail round it, to ascertain as much as we could as to the facilities for missionary work, and to leave New Testaments if possible in every important place."

With these ends in view, they instructed the boatmen to proceed next morning in an easterly direction, following the line of the shore. But this to their surprise met with the strongest disapproval. The further side of the island might have been beset with unimaginable dangers, from all the boatmen had to say of it ; and soon their employers gathered that it would be necessary to keep a sharp lookout if they intended to have their orders obeyed. Accordingly when the anchor was weighed before daybreak Hudson Taylor roused himself to speak to the men, and for some time watched the compass to see that they kept the right course.

And then a very Chinesey thing happened. The boatmen, alarmed at the prospect before them, had made up their minds that the east coast of Tsung-ming should remain an unexplored region as far as they were concerned. Opium was a necessity of their lives, and in those out-of-the-way places who could tell at what price it was to be had. The foreigners were tired, and soon would sleep again. They would follow their instructions to begin with, and when all was quiet-please themselves. Accordingly the coastline was kept well in sight for an hour or more ; after which, there being no remonstrance from within, the boat's head was turned northward, and with the help of a good breeze Tsung-ming soon faded from sight.

Still the weary missionaries slept on, and it was not until they were nearing what is now the north shore of the Yangtze that Hudson Taylor awoke in a double sense to the situation.

" It was no use then to be angry or scold the men," he wisely concluded, " for they would only have enjoyed that the more. The island we had left was already thirty or thirty-five miles behind us, and we should have lost a day in endeavouring to beat back to it. We therefore entered the first stream that presented itself ... and learning that there were plenty of towns and villages on this island also, determined to do what we could in a short time."

Tuh-shan on which they thus found themselves is not to be seen on any of the maps of to-day. Great areas of alluvial deposit have long since united it with the mainland, where the city of Hai-men now appears. At that time, however, it was cut off by water ; an island reproducing on a smaller scale the natural features of Tsung-ming, which it also resembled in the primitive state of its roads, and its wholly unevangelised condition.

Inquiring for some sort of conveyance by which to visit as many places, as possible, the missionaries found the only means of transportation to be the heavy, cumbersome wheelbarrow whose strident squeak is still measured by the mile in almost every part of China. Engaging two of these vehicles they set out, their books on one and themselves on the other, carefully balanced on either side of the wheel.1-{1 Should there be only one traveller, and no luggage or corresponding burden on the other side, the barrow is simply tilted till his weight is well over the wheel, and in this seemingly precarious position he is trundled from behind.}

A couple of miles of this laborious travelling brought them to the village of U-kioh-shan, a place of a thousand or more inhabitants, many of whom seemed intelligent and were able to read. Here it was a joy to give their message, and it was not until many books had been distributed that they passed on to the neighbouring town of Huang-shan.

The demand for books at this latter place exhausted their supply, and the attention with which they were listened to made them forget weariness and hunger. The only drawback was that they were obliged to return to their boats for more literature before proceeding to Hai-men itself, the capital of the island.

The sun was almost setting when the latter place was reached, but the long spring evening gave time for a good deal of work in the principal streets, which proved to be those of a large and busy city. Here to their surprise the missionaries were taken for Chinese from one of the southern provinces, Fu-kien men and probably rebels, which roused a good deal of excitement. But when Mr. Burdon explained that they were from a far western country, religious teachers who had come to heal the sick, and bring a message of love and pardon from the one true God, against Whom all have sinned, the people were satisfied and listened with attention.

"Before leaving," wrote Mr. Taylor, " I addressed the crowd, asking if we should come again. . . . The reply was an eager affirmative, and many wanted to know when they might expect us."

Candles and lanterns having now appeared, the missionaries set out on their return journey. Every book they had brought with them had been given away, and ten times as many might easily have been disposed of. Thus their visit, though brief, had accomplished something, and' tired as they were they trundled cheerfully through drenching rain to reach their boats at ten o'clock at night, thankful for the openings found on this large island also. 1- {1-Six months later two wealthy men, brothers, sent a servant all the way to Shanghai to invite the missionaries to return to Hai-men. They had obtained books, it appeared, on the occasion of this first visit, and were anxious to have " the foreign teachers " make a long stay in their home. Unfortunately it was not possible to accept the invitation in person. See Chap. 22, p.341, footnote.}

Before daylight next morning a favourable wind and tide had carried them far up the Yangtze, and when the sun rose upon a cloudless sky they found themselves nearing the sacred mountains that command the north and south banks of the river, just where its estuary narrows away from the sea. It was a day of unusual beauty, and their voices being sadly in need of rest they decided to make the ascent of the northern range, and learn all they could of the lie of the land around them. Directing the boatmen therefore to enter the nearest tributary stream and await their return in the latter part of the day, the young men set out full of expectancy.

"The country was delightfully fertile," wrote Hudson Taylor, it and the breeze fragrant from blowing over fields of peas and beans in flower. As we approached the hills' l-{1 The Lang-span group, facing the heights of Fu-shan on the opposite side of the river.} the scene became beautiful beyond description. Of the five summits the central one was the highest, crowned by a fine pagoda, evidently newly painted and repaired. At the foot of this hill and running up its side was the T'ai-shan t'ang, a Buddhist temple and monastery so extensive that at a little distance we mistook it for a village.

" The hill itself was steep, with bare declivitous rocks, and soil sparsely covered with grass and flowers. The ascent was by means of stone steps here and there among the trees ... some of which were very fine and had seen many summers. Varying shades of foliage, from the deep, gloomy cypress to the light, graceful willow, mingled with orange, tallow, and other trees, gave a lively and interesting variety to the scene, and each turn of the path, revealing new shrines and pavilions, only increased the charm.... Anything more beautiful I have never seen.

" Entering the temple itself, we found it undergoing repairs. Some parts, apparently just finished, were in process of painting and gilding. Scores if not hundreds of men were at work, and from the amount and style of the decorations the expense must have been and will be enormous. Strangely enough, nothing-could have been more timely than our visit, for the day happened to be a festival, and thousands of persons of all classes were gathered to join in the ceremonies. . . . Here were the rich and learned as well as the poor and wretched, here the gaily-apparelled and the meanly-clad, all victims of the same heathen superstitions, servants of the same master. Nothing could be more evident than that idolatry was here a living system, flourishing unmolested by soldiers of the Cross. . . . Here was one single institution, swarming with priests and those in training for that office, its idols to be numbered by hundreds.. . all richly painted, as was every part of the establishment, and gilding in profusion lavished upon them. Nothing was omitted and no expense spared that the eye might be charmed and the beholder captivated, and to the thousands present, no doubt, the idolatrous ritual was of the most imposing kind... ." Ascending from height to height, we passed shrine after shrine, and everywhere the same scene was repeated-idols, priests, worshippers. Heavy fumes of incense filled the air ; and the clinking of cash, as the passers-by threw their coins into baskets placed before the idols mingled with strains of music, the buzz of conversation and tramp of passing feet. Upon reaching the summit we entered the halls connected with the pagoda, named from the temple T`ai-shan tah,the hideous figures of the idols, seen through smoke and flames from burning paper, 1-{' Offerings of money and other objects made in paper,. expressly for burning before the idols.} making it seem like ... a place where Satan's seat is.

" Turning sadly away we mounted the pagoda, and what a contrast was the scene outspread before our eyes ! Here nature seemed to be offering that worship to her Creator which man refused, and - with surprise and delight we involuntarily exclaimed,' How beautiful!' No words can describe the landscape, and the more one looked the more fresh beauties lay revealed. The day was so clear that with the telescope the most distant objects were well-defined, and the brilliant sunlight threw an air of gladness over everything. The hill on which we stood was between four others . . . two on our right and two on our left, presenting innumerably objects of interest to our view. The country below, covered with early crops and tended like a garden, was of the brightest hue, owing to recent rains. Streams intersected it in every direction, bordered with drooping willows. Farm-houses with their fruit trees and neat willow-fences, cemeteries here and there, cypress-shaded, and numerous villages and hamlets dotted the foreground. Beyond these lay the magnificent Yangtze, fifteen to twenty miles broad, its great northerly sweep looking calm as a lake and bearing on its sunny waters many a boat and junk with graceful sails, some snowy white, some brown or black with age. Beyond again rose the `sacred mountains' of the southern shore, crowned with their monasteries and temples, . . . and other ranges of more distant hills. The opposite side of the square pagoda presented an entirely' different view. There to the north-west lay the great city of Tung-chow surrounded by a populous plain ; and several little lakes shining like molten silver put a finishing touch to the beauty of the scene."

With hearts greatly moved by this panorama, they stood long and silently-looking out as Moses over the promised land. Yes, this was China, seen at last, away from the narrow limits of a Treaty Port. How great it was, how farreaching. And here at their very feet what darkness, superstition, and sin ! Shanghai and its surroundings began to dwindle in importance, in view of all this. So many lights seemed gathered there, as they thought of all the Missions. After the appeal of unreached Tsungming, unreached Hai-men---this told. It was a sight to change a life, and Hudson Taylor's life was changed. From this time onward he swung free from influences that had held him, returning more and more in heart to his earlier position, his first sense of call to preach the Gospel, " Not where Christ was named. . . . But, as it is written, they shall see to whom no tidings of Him come, and they that have not heard shall understand."

Still throbbing with great though unspoken longings, they came down from the pagoda to make their way back to the boats, when in one of the courts below Hudson Taylor was stopped by a priest who requested him to bow before his Buddha and burn incense, with the usual offering of money. Stirred to the depths he could refrain no longer, and mounting the stool he had been desired to kneel on he addressed the throng about him in Mandarin, setting forth " the folly and sin of idolatry and the love of God in Christ which passes knowledge."

" When I had concluded," his journal continues, " Mr. Burdon followed in the Shanghai dialect. . . . It was evident that we were understood and that many felt the force of our message, amongst whom were some of the priests. When they saw the turn things were taking, however, they requested us to leave. This we would not do until we had finished, and when they began to go away themselves Mr. Burdon requested one or two to remain, that they might reprove us if we advanced anything contrary to the truth. I believe we were much assisted from above, and also that we were guided here by Providence to reach these multitudes who had never heard the precious truths of the Gospel. They gave us the most patient hearing, and listened with remarkable attention.

" Descending the hill we passed some stalls at which we purchased a few curiosities. We also witnessed scenes the very mention of which would outrage propriety, but were glad that we had thus an opportunity of seeing what tendencies these Buddhist festivals really have. While such iniquities are practised in the face of heaven and on the very ground belonging to the temples, who will say that despite all its moral teachings and fair outward profession Buddhism is not polluting ?

" After leaving the temple we distributed the Scriptures and tracts we had with us, and feeling sincerely thankful that we had been permitted to bear testimony against these abominations and to dispense the Word of Life, we set off for our boats, a walk of two or three miles. It was not until we reached them and had time to rest that we found our sore throats, which in the excitement of the day had been forgotten, had not particularly benefited by the strain they had unexpectedly sustained."

But tired throats could not deter them from the work of the following day. Their purpose now was to visit Tungchow, the city seen from the pagoda, whose unenviable reputation had already reached them. It might be months, years even, before other evangelists would reach it, and they could not bear the responsibility of leaving its vast population any longer in ignorance of the way, of Life. If nothing more were possible, they could at any rate distribute their remaining Scriptures within its walls, praying that the good seed might bring forth fruit to life eternal.

" After breakfast we commended ourselves to the care of our Heavenly Father," wrote Mr. Taylor, " and sought His blessing before proceeding to this great city. The day was dull and wet, the very opposite of yesterday. We both felt persuaded that Satan would not allow us to assail his kingdom without raising serious opposition ; but we were also fully assured that it was the will of God that we should preach Christ in this city and distribute the Word of Truth among its people. We were sorry that we had but few books left for such an important place. The result, however, proved that this also was providential.

" Our native teachers did their best to persuade us not to go, but we determined that by God's help nothing should hinder us. We directed them to remain in their boat, and if we did not return to learn whatever they could respecting our fate, and make all possible haste to Shanghai with the information. We also arranged that the other boat should wait for us, even if we could not get back that night, so that we might not be detained for want of a boat in case of returning later. We then put our books in two bags, and, with a servant who always accompanied us on these occasions, set off for the city, distant about seven miles. Walking was out of the question from the state of the roads, so we availed ourselves of wheelbarrows, the only conveyance to be had....

" We had not gone far before our servant requested permission to go back, as he was thoroughly frightened by reports concerning the native soldiery. Of course we at once consented, not wishing to involve another in trouble, and determined to carry the books ourselves and look for physical as well as spiritual strength to Him who had promised to supply all our need.

" At this point a respectable man came up and earnestly warned us against proceeding, saying that if we did so we should find to our sorrow what the Tung-chow militia were like. We thanked him for his advice, but could not act upon it, as our hearts were fixed. Whether it were for bonds, imprisonment, and death, or whether to return in safety we knew not, but we were determined, by the grace of God, not to leave Tung-chow any longer without the Gospel... .

" After this my wheelbarrow man would proceed no farther and I had to seek another, fortunately not difficult to find. As we went on the ride was anything but agreeable in the mud and rain, and we could not help feeling the danger of our position-though wavering not for a moment. At intervals we encouraged one another with promises from Scripture and verses of hymns . . . which were very comforting.

" On our way we passed through one small town of about a thousand inhabitants, and here in the Mandarin dialect I preached Jesus to a good number of people. Never was I so happy in speaking of the love of God and the atonement of Jesus Christ. My own soul was richly blessed and I was enabled to speak with unusual freedom. And how happy I was afterwards when one of our hearers repeated to the newcomers, in the local dialect, the truths upon which I had been dwelling. Oh, how thankful I felt to hear a Chinaman, of his own accord, telling his fellow-countrymen that God loved them, that they were sinners, but that Jesus had died instead of them and paid the penalty of their guilt. That one moment repaid me for all the trials we had passed through, and I felt that if the Lord should grant His Holy Spirit to change the heart of that man, we had not come in vain.

" We distributed a few Testaments and tracts, for the people were able to read. It was well we did so, for when we reached Tung-chow we had quite as many left as we had strength to carry.

" Nearing the western suburb of the city, the prayer of the early Christians when persecution was commencing came to my mind, ` And now, Lord, behold their threatenings, and grant unto Thy servants that with all boldness they may speak Thy Word ' : a petition in which we most heartily united. Before entering the suburb we laid our plans so as to act in concert, and told our barrow-men where to await us, that they might not be involved in trouble on our account. Then, looking up to our Heavenly Father, we committed ourselves to His keeping, took our books and set off for the city.

" For some distance we walked along the principal street leading to the West Gate unmolested, and were amused at the unusual title Heh-kwei-tsi (black devils) which was applied to us. We wondered about it at the time, but afterwards found that it was our clothes, not our complexions, that gave rise to it. As we passed several of the soldiers, I remarked to Mr. Burdon that these were the men we had heard so much about, and that they seemed willing to receive us quietly enough.

" Long before we reached the gate, however, a tall powerful man, made tenfold fiercer by partial intoxication, let us know that all the militia were not so peaceably inclined, by seizing Mr. Burdon by the shoulders.. My companion endeavoured to shake him off. I turned to see what was the matter, and in almost no time we were surrounded by a dozen or more of his companions, and were being hurried on to the city at a fearful pace.

" My bag now began to feel heavy.. I could not change hands to relieve myself, and was soon in a profuse perspiration and scarcely able to keep up with them. We demanded to be taken before the chief magistrate, but were told, with the most insulting epithets, that they knew where to take us and what to do. The man who first seized Mr. Burdon soon afterwards left him for me, and became my principal tormentor, for I was neither so tall nor so strong as my friend and was less able to resist him. He all but knocked me down again and again, seized me by the hair, took hold of my collar so as almost to choke me, and grasped my arms and shoulders, making them black and blue. Had this continued much longer I must have fainted. All but exhausted, how refreshing was the remembrance of a verse quoted by my dear mother in one of my last home letters


We speak of the realms of the blest,

That country so bright and so fair,

And oft are its glories confessed:

But what must it be to be there !


To be absent from the body . . . present with the Lord . . . free from sin. . . . And this is the end of the worst that man's malice can ever bring upon us.

" As we were being hurried along, Mr. Burdon tried to give away a few books that were under his arm, not knowing whether we might have another opportunity. But the fearful rage of the soldier . . . and the way he insisted on manacles being brought, which fortunately were not at hand, convinced us that in our present position it was useless to attempt such work. There was nothing to be done but quietly to submit and go along with our captors.

" Once or twice a quarrel arose as to how we should be dealt with, the more mild of our conductors saying that we ought to be taken to the Ya-men, but others wishing to kill us at once without appeal to any authority. Our minds were kept in perfect peace, and when thrown together on one of these occasions we reminded each other that the Apostles rejoiced that they were counted worthy to suffer in the cause of Christ. Having succeeded in getting a hand into my pocket, I produced a Chinese card (if the large red paper bearing one's name may be so called) and after this was treated with more civility. I demanded that it should be given to the chief official of the place, and that we should be led to his office. Before this we had been unable, say what we would, to persuade them that we were foreigners, although we were both in English attire.

" Oh the long weary streets we were dragged through. I thought they would never end ; and seldom have I felt more thankful than when we stopped at a place where we were told a Mandarin resided. Quite exhausted, bathed in perspiration and with my tongue cleaving to the roof of my mouth, I leaned against the wall, and saw that Mr. Burdon was in much the same state. I requested them to bring us chairs, but they told us to wait, and when I begged them to give us some tea, received only the same answer. Round the doorway a large crowd had gathered, and Mr. Burdon, collecting his remaining strength, preached Jesus Christ to them. Our cards and books had been taken in to the Mandarin, but he proved to be one of low rank, and after keeping us waiting for some time referred us to his superior in office.

" Upon hearing this and fording it was their purpose to turn us out again into the crowded streets, we positively refused to move a single step and insisted on chairs being brought. After some demur this was done, and we were carried off. On the way we felt so glad of the rest the chairs afforded and so thankful for having been enabled to preach the Gospel in spite of Satan's malice, that our joy was depicted on our countenances, and as we passed along we heard some say that we did not look like bad men, while others seemed to pity us. When we arrived at the Ya-men I wondered where we were being taken, for though we passed through some great gates that looked like those of the city wall, we were still evidently within the city. A second pair of gates suggested that it was a prison into which we were being carried. But when we came in sight of a large tablet with the inscription Min-chi fu-mu (the Father and Mother of the people) we felt more at ease, for this is the title assumed by civil magistrates.

" Our cards were again sent in, and after a short delay we were ushered into the presence of Ch'en Ta Lao-ie (The Great Venerable Grandfather Ch'en), who, as it proved, had formerly been Tao-tai in Shanghai and knew the importance of treating foreigners with civility. Coming before him some of the people fell on their knees and bowed down to the ground, and my conductor motioned me to do the same, but without success. This Mandarin who seemed to be the highest authority in Tung-chow and wore an opaque blue button on his cap, came out to meet us with every possible token of respect. He took us to an inner apartment, a more private room, followed by a large number of writers, runners, and semi-officials. I explained the object of our visit and begged permission to give him copies of our books, for which he thanked me. As I handed him the New Testament with part of the Old (from Genesis to Ruth), and some tracts, I tried to say a little about them, and also to give him a brief summary of our teachings.... He listened very attentively, as of course did all the others.. He then ordered refreshments to be brought, which were very welcome, and himself partook of them with us.

" After a long stay, we asked permission to see something of the city and to distribute the books we had with us before returning. To this he kindly consented. We then mentioned that we had been most disrespectfully treated as we came in, but did not attach much importance to the fact, being aware that the rough soldiery knew no better. Not desiring, however, to have such experiences repeated, we requested him to give orders that we were not to be further molested. This also he acceded to, and, with every possible token of respect, accompanied us to the door of his ya-men, sending several `runners ' to see that no trouble arose. . . . We distributed our books well and quickly, and after visiting the Confucian temple left the city quite in state. It was amusing to see the use the ` runners' made of their tails. When the way was blocked by the crowd they turned them into whips and laid them about the people's shoulders to right and left !

" We had a little trouble in finding our wheel-barrows, but eventually succeeding, we paid off the chair-coolies, mounted our humble vehicles and returned to the river, accompanied for fully half the distance by an attendant from the Ya-men. . . . Early in the evening we got back to the boats in safety, sincerely thankful to our Heavenly Father for His gracious protection and aid."

Thus the vision was clenched with suffering, and Hudson Taylor's first sight of the great unreached interior was immediately followed by his first experience of danger to life itself at the hands of those he sought to help and bless. What could be more calculated to deepen, while at the same time it tempered his life-purpose ? Love first, then suffering, then a deeper love-thus only can God's work be done.


THE joy of preaching Christ where He had never before been named had now laid hold of Hudson Taylor. Of the five journeys hitherto undertaken, the last two at any rate had been over untrodden ground. Both with Dr. Parker and Mr. Burdon he had found willing hearers for the Gospel where, as far as they could tell, it had never yet been proclaimed. It was a new experience, and to the young, devoted missionary a great experience, weaning his heart away from other, less-important things. Plans and hopes as regards settled work in Shanghai that for months had occupied him began to take a secondary place. He had tasted the wondrous sweetness of bringing tidings of the Saviour's love to those- who but ' for him might never have heard, and this henceforth was the work that claimed him more and more.

Not that he no longer wished to settle somewhere. The ' strain of such frequent journeys made him increasingly conscious of the need for suitable headquarters. But he was beginning to hope that it might be away from a Treaty Port, among those who had no one else to lead them in the heavenward way.

It was now early summer in Shanghai, and beginning to be hot. No answer had yet been received from the Committee as to the plans laid before them, so that, as far as the Society was concerned, matters were somewhat at a standstill. This made it all the more natural that Hudson Taylor should be drawn in the one direction that was providentially open, that of evangelistic journeys. His fitness for this work was becoming so evident that the British and Foreign Bible Society was willing not only to supply him with as many Scriptures as he could distribute but also to meet the larger part of his travelling expenses. Thus while his hands were tied in one way, and plans for local work kept in abeyance, openings `of an important kind were not lacking in other directions.

" I hope to go inland again in a few days," he wrote to Mr. Pearse scarcely a week after his return from Tung-chow. " You will join us in thanking the Lord for His protection in recent dangers. The Rebellion, especially since foreigners have enlisted themselves on both sides, has made access to the interior no easy matter. But the Word of God must go. And we must not be hindered by slight obstacles in the way of its dissemination... .

" I trust you will be much in prayer for us. We have many trials, and Satan does not let off easily those who attack his strongholds. Pray that we may be kept from harm spiritually as well as physically, and that the one intense desire of our hearts may be granted, that we may be made useful."


Ten days at home had barely given time to write up his journal, attend to letters and prepare for another journey, before the young evangelist set out upon a longer absence than any he had previously undertaken. This time he was alone, and with growing experience was able to, strike out on lines more characteristically his own. He seems to have had in view a long-cherished hope, the purpose in fact with which he had been sent to China, of penetrating inland as far as Nan-king, the headquarters of the Tai-ping Rebellion. Be that as it may, he steered his course up the Yangtze, exploring the southern shore with its principal tributary streams about two hundred miles. He was absent altogether twenty-five days, during which time he made known the Gospel in no fewer than fifty-eight cities, towns and larger villages, fifty-one of which had never before been visited by a Protestant missionary.

Starting on May 8 he did not reach home again until June 1, having made a careful investigation of the openings for such work up to within sixty miles of Chin-kiang, where the rebel forces were established, travelling in all a distance of four or five hundred miles.

It was a lonely journey and a courageous one with Tungchow experiences fresh in mind. At any point he might have been seized, tortured, and even put to death as a rebel or foreign spy. And short of this he was exceeding the most liberal interpretation of treaty rights, and could claim no protection either from his own Consul or from the local authorities. Serious indeed was the possible danger from excited crowds in places where European dress had never yet been seen. But these and all other complications he handed over to the One best able to deal with them, in the consciousness of whose presence he could be calm and free from care.

And the Lord was not only with him amid those lonely labours. He did more than protect His servant, and supply needed grace. It was, if one may say so reverently, His opportunity. And He drew very near revealing Himself and His purposes as He only can perhaps when one is much alone.

Long, long years after, on another journey-the last he ever took up that great river-pacing the deck of the steamer in company with the writers, he paused again and again, looking with misty eyes towards the hills that here and there break the level of that southern shore. It was somewhere near Green Grass Island that he said at length, " I wish I could tell you about it. It was over there. But I cannot remember just the spot."

Seeing him moved by some recollection, we waited silently to hear more. But fifty years had passed since that day-the remembrance of which still brought so deep a joy and awe. He could not put it into words. He tried, but could tell us little of what had been between his soul and God. But there, over there on those more distant heights, it had come to him. Some revelation of his future work perhaps. Some call to utmost self-surrender for the life to which the Lord was leading. And its influence remained.

Time would fail to follow in any detail the varied activities of this journey, but some idea of its general character must be given. On the banks of tidal rivers running into the wide estuary of the Yangtze, the traveller found himself within reach of numerous towns and villages. The more important of these were visited as he worked his way up the main river. Here and there cities were found, and busy market-places, in which many Scriptures could be distributed. But in the countless villages between the reading population was small, and Hudson Taylor began to realise how large a part in the evangelisation of China must be taken by simple preaching and individual instruction in the Truth.

The first three days after leaving Woo-sung were spent opposite Tsung-ming Island, where the boat, overtaken by a storm, was nearly wrecked before they could reach the shelter of the Liu river. Putting into this stream they found themselves in the neighbourhood of a city and several towns, one of which had a population of forty thousand. Here Hudson Taylor could not have desired better opportunities for the work he had at heart, and in the temple of the "Mother of Heaven" as well as among the junks crowded along the water-frontage many listeners were eager to obtain books and learn more about his message.

His journal for the days that followed spent on another tributary stream gives an impression of unremitting labour, and reveals also something of what it meant to be alone amid such overwhelming needs.

Friday, May 11, 1855: Got off at 6 A.M., and with the tide ran up the Yangtze till we reached the Pah-miao kiang or Creek of the Eight Temples, which we entered. Here, after seeking the Lord's blessing, I landed, and was quickly surrounded by sixty or eighty people who had never seen a foreigner before. To them I preached the glad tidings of salvation before proceeding to a town called Liu-ho-chen. The road was miserably dirty, and though the distance was only two miles it seemed like four at least.

On arrival I found that it contained a good many respectable shops and intelligent people. As usual the demand for books was great. . . . The population of this place cannot be less than twenty thousand, and they had never heard before of the Word of the Living God. Here I distributed many portions of Scripture and tracts, and would willingly have stayed longer but that time did not permit.

On the way to the next town, Huang-king, I could not help feeling sad and downcast. Wherever one goes-cities, towns and villages just teeming with inhabitants, few of whom have ever heard the only Name " under heaven given among men whereby we must be saved." Just to visit them, give away portions of Scripture and tracts, and -after preaching a few times pass on to other places, seem almost like doing nothing for the people. And yet unless this course is adopted how are those further on ever to hear at all ? It is the Word of God we leave behind us, living seed that cannot be fruitless, for He from whom it comes has said, " My word . . . shall not return unto Me void,' but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it."

We see no fruit at present, and it needs strong faith to keep one's heart from sinking ; besides which I have felt a degree of nervousness since we were so roughly treated in Tung-chow which is quite a new experience, a feeling that is not lessened by being quite alone. I remember, however, His faithful promise, " They that sow in tears shall reap in joy," and " He that goeth forth and weepeth, bearing precious seed, shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him."

Faint and weary, having had no food since breakfast, I arrived at Huang-king at 4 P.M., and prayed God to enable me to distribute my books to the best advantage and to give me a word to speak to the people.

The prayer was indeed answered, and I found' the place so large that had I had four times as many books with me they would have been barely enough to supply all the applicants who could read. . . . When I had finished the work of distribution I went into the temple in which the pagoda stands and found it full of cases of newly-made incense laid out to dry. Connected with the temple is a nunnery, and one of the nuns, 'a superior-looking woman, came out to meet me and seemed vastly amused at my costume. People followed me into the courtyard, and when some hundreds were assembled I asked them if they would like me to address them ; upon which a stool was brought, and mounting it I preached " Jesus, and Him crucified." They listened with the utmost attention, and when I concluded many asked for books containing these doctrines and eagerly inquired when I would return and bring more. I could only recommend them to borrow from one another and pray that God would enable them to understand and believe in what they had already heard.

As I left the place many persons accompanied me with every manifestation of friendly feeling. I could not but be struck with the contrast between my arrival and departure, for when I first entered the town, people ran away as from a wild animal ! . . . It was gratifying to see a friendly feeling so soon established, and to know that two towns now possessed the Gospel of the grace of God which until that morning had never received it. As we repassed Liu-ho-chen, a good many people came out and we had a little conversation, after which we went on, reaching our boat about 8 P.M.. very tired and ready for dinner.

Saturday, May 12: One of the hottest days we have had this year. Having arranged my books and prepared a good selection to take with me, I set out to visit several more towns in the neighbourhood. The first place I went to was the " Dragon Emperor's Temple," a little town in which I was told a Mandarin resided. I found it quite a small place, consisting of a few houses, the largest of which was occupied by a Revenue Officer of the name of Li. Calling upon him I was courteously received, and left in his possession a New Testament, part of the Old, and several tracts. After this we went on and in due time reached the " Shrine of the Chang Family " (Chang-kia-si), a town of about four thousand inhabitants, where for the first time the Word of God was distributed and a foreigner seen and heard.

At first the people were frightened, but this soon wore off, and men, women and children seemed to be intensely interested. Their astonishment was great when they found that I could understand their language, and it was most amusing to hear their remarks about many things. When I took out my watch to look at the time, one grown-up person exclaimed that never before had he seen such spectacles ! Another promptly corrected him, informing the company that it was nothing less than a telescope I had in my pocket, and that western men were celebrated for making them. Upon which a third chimed in : No, he knew better than that ; the wonderful object they had seen was a clock, which told the hour by striking a bell ; and what I was wearing on my nose was a telescope, and not a pair of spectacles as some had ignorantly suggested !

A short distance beyond this place was a group of houses looking like the beginning of another little town, to which I next directed my steps. I found it to be a private residence, the home of a fine old gentleman, eighty years of age, who had formerly been a Mandarin at Soo-chow. Taken to the guest-hall, I noticed over the entrance this inscription, " Act morally and you will obtain Happiness." I took the lowest chair of course, nearest the door, but in a little while the master of the house appeared and with much ceremony insisted on my moving to a higher seat.

When I offered him a selection of our books, he told me he also had books to give, and made me a present of three works of his own, in ten volumes, beautifully' got up and treating of almost every imaginable subject. There was a little astronomy, a little meteorology, a little geography, some mathematics, and so on. But he said he had one superlative idea which he was delighted to have the opportunity of imparting to me.

Three great kingdoms existed in the world he said, England, Russia and China, but his discovery was as yet unknown in any of them.. Confucius himself was ignorant of it, and likewise all the Sages. In short it was known to but one person-himself ; and he was now eighty years of age. This long prelude and the importance of his manner made me wonder what could be coming, and it was hard to repress a smile when it proved to be that the sun stood still and the earth travelled round it... .

This gentleman seemed to be a close observer of nature, for amongst other things he wrote out for me a list of climbing plants arranged in two columns according as they turned to the right hand, in growing, or to the left. After an interesting visit I went a few miles further and found another town (Teng-chow-si) of about a thousand inhabitants. Here also I distributed Scriptures and tracts, and preached to about two hundred people in the open air. Then as the sun was low we set off for our boat with all speed, but were caught in torrents of rain and did not arrive till long after dark.

Sunday, May 13: Enjoyed some quiet hours of reading and prayer in my boat, after which . . . I distributed Scriptures and tracts in the Town of the " Eight Temples." Thence we went on to the " Shrine of the Heng Family," a place of some eight thousand inhabitants. There in the principal temple I preached to two or three hundred people, distributing afterwards many Testaments and other books.

We then made our way again to the " Chang Family Shrine," and after conversation with several others I revisited the old Mandarin seen yesterday. When our talk took a religious turn he made the common remark, " Jesus is your Sage, Confucius ours," and was much astonished when I told him that the Lord Jesus was not an Englishman ; that though born a Jew He was no mere man, but perfect God and perfect man in one ; and in proof of His deity adduced His miracles and the fact of the resurrection. He told me he intended coming to Shanghai in a few weeks and would return my call, promising in the meanwhile to look into my books and desiring me to read those he had given me. After this we returned to our boat, again arriving long after dark ; and having supplied medicine to a man who had followed us four miles to get it, I closed another Lord's day with prayer to God for His blessing.

Thus he worked his way up the main river until on May 15 the hills of Lang-shan and Fu-shan again came in sight. The temples crowning the former he had visited already, so it was to the latter, the sacred mountain of Fushan with the city of the same name at its base, that Hudson Taylor now turned his attention. In and around this city several days were spent and in ascending the tributary stream to another famous pilgrim resort, the city and hills of Chang-shu. Very interesting is his account of work done in these places, in which his preaching was so well understood that people said " The foreign-devil language is almost the same as our own."

One ,more Sunday on a creek still farther up, and the young missionary reached Green Grass Island, lying in the first, great westward bend of the Yangtze., Here on his birthday (May 21) two towns and a large village were visited and the Gospel preached to many willing hearers. As evening was drawing in he was taken to see a sick person, to whom he gave some simple remedies. The news soon spread, and before he could reach his boat, a hundred or more people had assembled, fully half of whom were suffering in ways he could relieve. Tired and hungry though he was he gladly set to work to dispense medicines, and before supper that evening had treated between forty and fifty patients.

This, of course, opened his way to -many homes and hearts, and the rest of the week was fully occupied either on the island itself or on the mainland opposite. Of the day following his birthday he wrote

Tuesday, May 22: Left the island early this morning, and after a pleasant sail of seven miles entered a creek running in toward some high hills. Here I landed, took as many books as our bags would hold and set off for the country. On the way we passed through a small town, in which I distributed a few Testaments and other books, and was as usual an object of wonder to the people, who had never seen a foreigner before.

Thence we went on to the city of Yang-shae, entering by the North Gate, and distributed a good many Scriptures and tracts. I then addressed the people in the temple of the City-God, but the noise was so great that only those nearest me can have heard. After this, and a walk on the wall which gave one a good view of the city, we left by the South Gate and continued our work of distribution in the suburb.

Though only small in size, Yang-shae might well be called a model city. Its walls are in perfect repair, not a brick wanting nor a battlement injured.... Its houses and shops are good, its streets clean and people respectable, though they can make a hubbub ! a thing not to be wondered at when the exciting cause is remembered. An Englishman in foreign dress, distributing religious books and preaching in the very temple of the presiding deity of the city, was enough to upset their composure... .

From Yang-shae I walked out to the "Pebble" or "Gravel Mountain," the highest elevation I have yet seen in China. The view from the top was very fine. With the aid of the telescope I counted no fewer than fifty-four distinct hills, some at a distance of quite as many miles. In an easterly direction, north of the Yangtze, rose the Lang-shan group with their pagodas and temples, and opposite across the river the heights of Fu-shan and Chang-shu. South of the hill on which I stood was the large town of Hwa-shYh with its pagoda in excellent repair, and south-by-west the hill and city of Wu-sih on the Grand Canal. Southward still, quite in the distance, were the mountains near the Great Lake and beyond Soo-chow. Westward lay the hill and city of Kiang-yin, some distance up the Yangtze. To the north Green Grass Island was well in sight, and the mighty river hidden here and there by the hills along its bank ... completed a view well worth the toilsome ascent it had cost.

How long he stayed there in the- welcome silence the journal does not say, nor what were the thoughts and feelings that filled his mind. It was a wonderful outlook, and could not but draw forth his sympathies for the great land that lay beyond on every side. Was it at this time and in this place the vision of his life-work came, to him ? We do not know : the records do not tell us. But he was quite alone, only just twenty-three, and already launched on pioneering labours the trend of which he often longed to understand. It was an occasion at any rate for fresh consecration to the work and to the Lord he loved ; and it is more than likely that in view of needs so overwhelming, deeper longings and more earnest prayer would rise within him-" great thoughts, calm thoughts, thoughts lasting to the end."

Certainly many of the principles of later years can be seen in embryo on this journey, and the spirit of it all is specially characteristic, read between the lines of his brief, simple journal. Of two long, hot days on Green Grass Island, for example, he wrote as follows

Thursday, May 24: Set off early this morning with books, and spent the whole day going from house, hamlet and village, to house, hamlet and village. In this way more than a dozen schoolmasters were supplied with books, and readers wherever they were found.... On this island the towns seem to be neither large nor numerous. The people live mostly in hamlets of from one to three hundred, with here and there a larger village. In the afternoon we reached one place, Nian-feng-kiai, with about six hundred inhabitants. Here I finished the distribution of my books, and visited one or two sick people who were unable to come to us. We then set off on the return journey and reached our boat at about 5 P.M.. very tired with the long walk. Many persons, however, had followed us, wanting medicines either for themselves or their friends, some indeed having come two, three or more miles. So I told them of Jesus, found out about their symptoms and supplied them with medicines, removed a tumour from a young man's neck, and was thus employed till some time after dark. Then my visitors left me. I got my things put away, had some dinner, for which I was more than ready, and finished the day with writing.

Friday, May 25 : Saw a few patients, then left for the mainland, where we went ashore with books for distribution. After supplying the little town of K'ian-t'u we visited not a few villages, and put the Word of God into the hands of every teacher we could find. Getting back to the boat again at 6 P.M. I saw several patients, after which we left with the tide. During the day while walking from place to place, tired and bathed, in perspiration, I was much refreshed in spirit by the thought that the Lord Jesus, doubtless, had often felt the same ; for He too went about in a hot country. We made good progress after leaving, wind and tide both favouring us, and shortly after dark anchored out on the river.

Yes, He too lived amid crowds of sick and suffering people, and could not escape dirt, discomfort, weariness, and all the monotony and discouragement of a missionary's lot. And He knew loneliness, the solitude of a life that had no sympathy as regards its deepest needs, its highest aspirations. Not one tear you shed, not one pang you feel is unknown to Him. It is all, every ache of it, " fellowship with His sufferings." Does not that transfigure the darkest moment, rob the bitterest humiliation of its sting ? Think, He has felt the same : and to all eternity there shall be that closer sympathy between your heart and His. He shares with you something deeper, more wonderful than His glory, His joy. He shares with you just all that these experiences mean, all that it ever must mean to be the Saviour of the World : and is there anything more sacred even in the heart of God than this ?

And then the Lord who knows His servant's need brings in some moment of relief-a day of tropical rain it may be, when it is useless to go out ; an attack of illness, giving time for rest and prayer ; a swollen river that cannot be crossed, or a Sunday in some quiet spot upon your journey---and in the brief respite comes soul-renewing fellowship with Him.

Thus it was for Hudson Taylor the day after the above entry in his journal. Passing the extremity of Green Grass Island the wind turned against them and the channel was too narrow to admit of tacking. For nine hours they had to wait, the wind meanwhile increasing to a perfect hurricane. Travelling late on Saturday in consequence, they were again obliged to anchor in mid-stream. There Sunday morning found them (May 27), a lovely summer day after the storm, and who can tell the refreshment to the weary missionary of a few quiet hours before they went ashore ?

" Very much enjoyed reading and prayer," he wrote, " in my cabin, and felt renewed confidence in Him who , has brought us hitherto."

Whatever may have been his intention on leaving Shanghai, he seems to have felt it wiser not to continue his journey much beyond this point. It may be that the boatmen were unwilling to venture farther up the Yangtze on account of the Insurgents at Chin-kiang. It may be he himself thought it better to be satisfied with what was already accomplished, without running into needless danger. He had been wonderfully preserved so far, and was now nearly two hundred miles from home. Three weeks was an unusually long absence from a foreign Settlement in those days, and he was coming to an end of his supplies. He distributed his remaining books, therefore, in Kiang-yin with its extensive surburbs and in a city seen from the neighbouring hill-, (Tsing-kiang), and on Tuesday, May 29, commenced the return journey.

Two days later, about midnight,' they succeeded in reaching Shanghai in spite of serious gales, very thankful for renewed preservation from shipwreck, and for having been enabled to distribute in peace and safety over two thousand seven hundred Scripture portions and tracts.


SUMMER was now in possession of the Settlement, and it was a warm welcome Hudson Taylor received in more ways than one on his return to Ma-ka-k'uen. The little house was still as crowded as ever, and there seemed no prospect of relief for this season at any rate ; but grace was found sufficient for the daily needs, even when these extended into long, breathless nights, when sleep was well-nigh impossible for the heat. If only the rats had not been so lively the nights would have been less trying. But whether the temperature excited them or not, they were aggressive in the extreme, running all over the room and even jumping on the beds in their nocturnal carousals.

Yet, how thankful Hudson Taylor and his fellow-workers were for the shelter of even these indifferent quarters ! Anything better, indeed anything they could live in at all 1 was still unattainable, in spite of the reconstruction that was going on apace. So that worse than staying on in those three rooms all summer would be having to leave them when they were needed for reinforcements expected by the L.M.S. This could not be for several months however, and meanwhile provision would surely be made for mission-premises of their own. Hope deferred, they found, was but poor diet for cheerfulness under the circumstances ; but the Committee was slow in replying to their communications of the previous December, and there was nothing for it but to wait on, working in such ways as were open to them through the hot season. All through July and August, while travelling was impracticable, Hudson Taylor carried on a daily service in the Shanghai dialect for their teachers, servants and others who wished to join them. This opportunity of giving regular instruction to the same set of people was a great joy to him, and all the more so when it seemed to be bearing fruit. A sudden death occurring in the neighbourhood from cholera, he made the most of the opportunity to urge the importance of immediate salvation from sin and its eternal consequences. A few days later he alluded to the circumstances again, asking if any of his hearers had definitely come to God for pardon through faith in Jesus Christ. Pausing a moment, perhaps hardly expecting an answer, what was his thankfulness when Kuei-hua the young cook said earnestly, " I have."

This open confession before his fellow-servants meant a great deal.

" I do hope," wrote Hudson Taylor, " that he is under the influence of the Holy Spirit. Though not without faults, he is greatly changed for the better. For some months we have not detected him in falsehood or dishonesty of any kind, which is saying a good deal." 1 {1-This young man, a brother of the pupil they had adopted on the strength of Mr. Berger's gift, proved increasingly satisfactory as time went on, and was the first convert Mr. Taylor baptized in China.}

The school meanwhile was also doing well, though their adopted pupil was still the only boarder. On his return from the Yang-tze Mr. Taylor had found a room to let in the native city, in a quarter where no missionary work was being carried on. This he gladly rented, moving the school from the Settlement early in June. Now, with an excellent teacher, it was exercising an influence for good amid the large population of the South Gate and its busy suburb.

On Sunday, when the ordinary routine was suspended, the schoolroom was well filled for a Gospel service, and several times through the week Dr. Parker came down to see patients and dispense medicines. Both there and in a room he had secured across the river,2 {2- This dispensary and " outstation " Dr. Parker opened in May, when he had been about six months in China. It was in the town of Yang-king, across the Hwang-poo river, a few miles east of Shanghai.} the medical work brought large numbers of people round them and afforded excellent opportunities for preaching. These Mr. Taylor supplemented with excursions to the surrounding country, often walking many miles from village to village and preaching four or five times in the open air. All this in addition to language-study made it necessary somewhat to curtail his correspondence as compared with the previous summer, but on Sunday evenings when the work of the day was done he still found time for letters that revealed much of his inner life.

" I have been spending an hour," he wrote one close evening in August, " in happy communion with Him whose wondrous grace has called and numbered me with His people. The more I see of myself and the more I learn of Him, the more I am astonished that He can ever have given me a place among His children. It is only at the foot of the cross we see ourselves, the world, and God in the true light..:. There alone can we form true impressions ... and how far short they still fall of the reality ! But I must conclude. My walking to-day (about six miles) and three services, with the thermometer at goo F. in the shade, has made me feel worn out."

And on a later Sunday : " I do indeed need your prayers. To work on without seeing results takes much faith, and mine is so weak. What a beautiful hymn that is of Wesley's,


Give to the winds thy fears;

Hope and be undismayed:

God hears thy sighs, and counts thy tears;

God shall lift up thy head. 1-{1-Paul Gerhardt ; translated by John Wesley.}


" What I need is more faith, more intimate communion with God.... We can impart that only which we first receive.. The disciples could make the people sit down, but Jesus must bless the bread and give it to them ere they could break it to the multitude. Oh that we may be much with Jesus ; may be enabled to feed many with the Bread of Life, and finally have an abundant entrance into the abode where holiness ever reigns."

But all the while he was carrying on this settled work in and around Shanghai, Hudson Taylor was longing to be farther afield. Only the heat of summer that made travelling dangerous kept him so in Shanghai, for all he had seen and experienced on recent journeys was calling with the claim of a greater need.

One itineration indeed had been attempted since the beginning of June, which though cut short by illness was to have an important bearing on his future as well as on that of Dr. Parker. Accompanied by Mr. Burdon they had set out on a preaching tour that was to include a visit to Ning-po for partial rest and change. Missionaries of several societies were at work in that important city, and the blessing of God was manifestly resting upon their labours. Hudson Taylor and his colleague looked forward therefore to much help from this visit, far though they were from realising all it was to bring into their lives.


On the way down to Ning-po, four governing cities and a number of towns were visited. Forty miles south of Shanghai they reached the coast at Che-lin, a deserted Hsien. Pirates swarmed in the neighbourhood, and people had taken refuge further back from the seashore.

Next day, at the border of the Cheh-kiang province, Mr. Taylor separated from his companions in order to visit on foot several places to which the boat could not take them. This gave him an opportunity of climbing the Cha-pu bills, from which an extensive view was obtained over Hangchow Bay, with its beautiful islands. Reaching the city of Cha-pu some hours before sunset, he preached in the temple of the Mother of Heaven, the sailor's special divinity, and distributed his remaining books.

A comfortless night followed, for he missed his friends and was not able to get back to the boat. Having no bedding or luggage, he might have hunted in vain for an inn that would receive him, and it is more than likely that he and his servant would have had to spend the night in the streets but for the kindness of an elderly woman who had compassion on them. It was already late when she took them into her house, the first Chinese home to welcome the young missionary, and glad enough he was of the rice-gruel and straw bed that was all it could afford.

After a long hunt, his missing companions were found the following morning, and together they spent the day in preaching and tract-distribution throughout the city. Cha-pu, a large and busy place, was protected from pirates by a garrison of Manchu soldiers, and the trade carried on in salted fish and such-like commodities was considerable. It was the point of embarkation also for Ning-po and other great cities, and was well supplied in consequence with seagoing junks.

Engaging one of these to take them across the Bay, the missionaries went on board in the evening to find the cabin they had expected to occupy full already with passengers, and that more were crowding in. This was disconcerting, and it did not mend matters when the captain, siding with the majority, declared that his boat was a passenger-boat, although the missionary party had paid for all the accommodation. Finally a compromise was arranged. As many as could find room enough to lie down were allowed to remain, including the foreigners, and the rest were turned away without compunction. It was Hudson Taylor's first night on a passenger-boat-first of so many !

Starting at midnight, they found themselves at Ha-pu the following morning, and all that day was spent in rowing up one of the many streams by which Ning-po is reached. Twilight fell upon the guardian hills as the travellers made their way through the multitudinous craft that line the chief approaches to the city, and from the darkness of the narrow streets it was good to be welcomed in the hospitable mission-house to which Mr. Burdon led the way.

Here as guests of Mr. and Mrs. Cobbold the next few days were spent, days which to the visitors were full of interest, introducing them to a peculiarly united community in which they were received with great kindness. Eleven foreigners in all represented several English and American Societies, and there was in addition an excellent school carried on by a lady of independent means, 1-{1 Miss Aldersey, an English lady who six years before China was opened to the residence of foreigners had settled in Java to work among Chinese women there. After the Treaty of Nanking in 1842 she was the first to commence a school for girls on Chinese soil-coming to Ning-po in 1843 as one of the pioneer missionaries to settle in that city.} assisted by the orphan daughters of the Rev. Samuel Dyer. His had been a much-loved name among the earliest group of missionaries to the Chinese, and these young ladies though only eighteen and twenty years of age were already fluent in the language and very useful in the work to which their lives were given.

One thing only seemed lacking to the all-round development of the Ning-po Missions. There was no hospital. The missionaries felt this drawback keenly, and as they came to know something of Dr. Parker a new hope sprang up which resulted in a unanimous invitation to the Scotch physician to join them. But this was not until he and his companions had returned to Shanghai, greatly benefited by their change, and linked for the future, little as they suspected it, with lives in Ning-po that had touched their own.

The return journey was to have been given to further evangelisation ; but hardly had they left the city when a messenger overtook them, bringing news of the serious illness of Mr. Burdon's only child. It was not yet a year since the young mother had been taken, and the thought of the little one suffering and perhaps dying in his absence was too much for the father's heart. He felt he must hasten back at once, and his friends decided to accompany him. It was well they did, for Hudson Taylor had already been very poorly in Ning-po, and further illness was only warded off until Shanghai was reached, showing that he was in no condition for travelling during the hot season.

The next two months were spent, therefore, as we have seen, in and around the Settlement. But though this temporary work was encouraging and full of promise, it was accompanied by no little trial as to their position and prospects. Gradually it was becoming evident that the Society was not prepared to endorse their suggestion with regard to mission headquarters in any of the Treaty Ports. It was a matter of principle with the Committee not to put money into bricks and mortar, even though it seemed that their representatives could be housed in no other way. But their veto upon the carefully thought-out scheme laid before them did not come all at once ; and meanwhile the far-away missionaries were not forgotten by Him who sees the end from the beginning.

It is easy enough now for us to realise that the Shanghai idea, as far as they were concerned, was a mistaken one, but it was anything but easy for them. Dr. Parker had not yet received the invitation to Ning-po, and Hudson Taylor, eager though he was to go inland, knew all too well the seriousness of such an undertaking and the need for a good home base.

" It is hard to be ever on the move," he had written to his sister after their return from Ning-po,1- { 1 In a letter dated June 28, 1855} " and to have no settled dwelling. I have some thought of buying a set of Chinese garments soon, and seeing how I could get on with them. If I could get a little place somewhere in the interior, perhaps I might settle down and be useful.As things are at present, we cannot hope to see much fruit-for we have no station, no chapel, no hospital, no house even of our own....

" The future is in the hands of God.... There we must leave it. . . . Pray for me, for I am very weak and unworthy, and have been a good deal tried of late."

And no wonder, when one considers the conditions under which they were living, and the exhausting heat of summer. But the point specially worthy of notice is the changed attitude of the writer since his last letter on the subject three months previously.2- {2- See Chap 22, P. 273.}Then it had been-Our plans are laid before the Society : if they do nothing, we mean to try and carry them out ourselves : if they oppose, it may become a question as to which we shall dispense with, the Society, or our plans of usefulness. Now it was -Chinese dress, a little place somewhere in the interior, and, above all, a future left in the hands of God. How great a difference ! The Lord had had time to work. And as always in His providence, the moulding force came not only from outward circumstances, but from the development of His life within.

Do we not need to remind ourselves in these days especially in connection with His service, of the danger of impatience and taking things too much into our own hands ? If we are really waiting on God and doing His will, hindrances that are not removed are safeguards, keeping us from mistaken courses, and bringing about the preparation of spirit necessary in ourselves before His best can be given.

It does not always seem so. How little could Hudson Taylor have imagined that, even before the answer to those January letters could be received, his own outlook would be so changed that he would no longer cling to what had then seemed desirable ? How little could Dr. Parker have foreseen that before summer was over he would be called to a more important and congenial sphere ? And how little can we tell all we are being delivered from by our very limitations, or the wider service to which the Lord is leading in ways beyond our ken ? So let us thank God from our hearts for trials that are not removed, though brought before Him in believing prayer, and praise Him for answers that seem long in coming, knowing the delay is needed to make us ready to receive them.

Thus Hudson Taylor and his colleague were being really led of God, though August only seemed to bring a climax to their difficulties. What was the Lord's guidance in it all ? That was the question.

" Many reasons," wrote Hudson Taylor, 1-{1 A letter to his parents dated July 24. 1855.} " make me desire to go to Ning-po with the Parkers, but there are also many against it. There are already fourteen missionaries there, . . . and they are working the field well and in much peace and unity. Shanghai is not nearly so well worked, with more than double the number of missionaries.The Ning-po dialect, I must confess, is no attraction, though once learned it would no doubt increase my opportunities of usefulness.There may be something of laziness in it, but I do feel this is an objection against going to a new district.... Expenses are less there than in Shanghai. If I stay here I shall certainly have to move, for our co-tenants are leaving in about a month (their new house is just finished), and the whole rent of these premises would be far more than I can afford.

" So you see that I am as unsettled as to my future prospects as the first day I landed in China. I am waiting on the Lord for guidance. Meanwhile, my thought is to stay on here in Shanghai if possible, at any rate for the present. I feel as if my work here were not done. But eventually I may go to Ning-po, if my efforts to obtain a footing in the interior should fail in this district. It does seem as if I never should be settled ! I do long for a helpful companion with whom I could take counsel and have real sympathy of mind and feeling, and to be fixed somewhere in good, regular work."

But there was something more important still, if his prayers for usefulness were to be answered as fully as the Lord was able and willing to answer them. Moab, we are told, was." at ease from his youth, . . . settled on his lees, . . . not emptied from vessel to vessel "-a poor, inferior quality of wine of which nothing could be made." Therefore, his taste remained in him and his scent is not changed." 1 {1- Jeremiah 48:11}. But the life that was to be made a blessing the wide world over must pass through a very different process, including much of that emptying and re-emptying " from vessel to vessel," so painful to the lower nature, from which we are being refined.


Leave to His sovereign sway

To choose and to command ;

So shalt thou wondering own His way,

How wise, how strong His hand.

Far, far above thy thought

His counsel shall appear,

When fully He the work hath wrought

That caused thy needless fear.


It was August 6 when the long-expected came at length, and Hudson Taylor and his colleague received notice that the house they were occupying must be vacated by the end of September. Two new missionaries were on the way from England and would require the premises.

And just then, strangely enough, further letters from their own Committee put a final veto upon their plans for Shanghai as a permanent centre. No, they were not to build, though permission was given Dr. Parker to rent rooms for a dispensary. How or where they were to live was left a matter of uncertainty, the Committee apparently having no suggestion to make. 1-{1- On September 7, writing to his mother, Hudson-Taylor alluded to their disappointment as follows " The hospital project for here, as you will see, is over. The Society's objection is not, 'We cannot do it.' . Had that been all, I believe we here could. But they say, ' Our professed intentions are not to work in the five Ports, but in the interior. We do not wish our representatives to spend money in Shanghai.' "} Well was it for the much-tried missionaries that the Lord had not overlooked this im portant detail, but was caring for His workers as well as for the best interests of His work.

Another letter, also received early in August, gave full proof of this. Several weeks previously the unanimous invitation of the missionaries in Ning-po had reached Dr. Parker, earnestly requesting that he would go and settle among them. He had replied that he could not feel justified in doing so unless assured that it would open to him a wider door of usefulness. For a home and practice of his own, no matter how attractive, he could not sacrifice missionary work. But if in connection with such a position he could see his way to the support of a hospital for the Chinese, the expense of which would be at least eight hundred dollars per annum, the matter might look very different. And now the answer reached him. Just when he was ready for it-eight months in the country having given him some familiarity with the people and language-then, and not before, the opening came that was to determine his life-work.

" You will be glad, I am sure, to learn," he wrote to his Committee on August 22, " that the friends in Ning-po have become surety for the amount required, and rejoice in the prospect of a missionary hospital there-the only Treaty Port without one.

" This, of course, shuts me up to taking this step, unless I set at nought the plain indications of Providence. And as I believe it to be God's will, I have resolved to go, and to do so at once."

The resolution come to thus opportunely, while it cleared the way for Dr. Parker and his family, only left Hudson Taylor the more cast upon God. Now he would be lonely indeed, bereft of companionship as well as home. Feeling, as he did, so definitely that his work in Shanghai was not yet finished, he had at once to set about seeking quarters to which he might remove his belongings. But, as before, the search proved useless. Nothing was to be had at a price within his means.

Day after day went by in weary trampings up and down the city, and at the end of three weeks the hope of finding what he needed seemed farther off than ever. Many thoughts had been in his mind during this time, some idea of which may be gathered from a note to his sister of August 19:

Dr. Parker has accepted the invitation to Ning-po, and will be going down in a few days to arrange accommodation for his family. Nearly the whole of last week I spent in seeking a house to move into here myself, but I have not found one. They all want heavy deposits that I am not able to pay.. It is wearisome work, and if I do not succeed soon I shall adopt Chinese dress and seek a place in the country.... These changes are not easy, Do pray much for me.

Chinese dress and a home somewhere in the country--the thought was becoming familiar. But it was an expedient almost unheard of in those days. Sometimes on inland journeys a missionary would wear the native costume as a precautionary measure, and Dr. Medhurst himself had suggested to Hudson Taylor that he might find it helpful. But it was invariably discarded on the traveller's return, and he would have been careless of public opinion indeed who would have ventured to wear it always, and in the Settlement.

But it was nothing less than this that the young missionary was meditating, driven to it by his longing to identify himself with the people and by the force of outward circumstances. If he could not find quarters in Shanghai he must go to the interior, and why add to his difficulties and hinder the work he most desired to accomplish by emphasising the fact that he was a foreigner ?

Another week went by in almost incessant house-hunting, and the time drew near when Dr. Parker was to leave for Ning-po. Hudson Taylor had promised to escort him as far as Hang-chow Bay, to see him through the more difficult part of the journey. They were to start on Friday morning the 24th, and up to Thursday afternoon the search for premises had been in vain.

Yes, it was growing clearer. For him, probably, the right thing was a closer identification with the people ; Chinese dress at all times and the externals of Chinese life, including chop-sticks and native cookery. How much it would simplify travelling in the interior ! Already he had purchased an outfit of native clothing. If, after all the prayer there had been about it, he really could not get accommodation in Shanghai, it must be that the Lord had other purposes. He would send his few things down to Ning-po with Dr. Parker, who had offered to store them, and living on boats would give himself to evangelistic work until his way opened -UP somewhere in the interior.

Thursday night came, and Dr. Parker was to leave the following morning. It was useless to seek premises any longer, so Hudson Taylor went down to engage the junk that was to take them to Hang-chow Bay with their belongings. His Chinese dress was ready for the following morning when he expected to begin a pilgrim life indeed.

And this, apparently, was the point to which it had been necessary to lead him. He had followed faithfully. It was enough. And now on these new lines could be given the answer to weeks and months of prayer.

As he was on his way to make arrangements for their journey, a man met him. Did he want a house in the Chinese city ? Would a small one do, with only five rooms ? Because near the South Gate there was such a house, only it was not quite finished building. The owner had run short of money and hardly knew how to complete the work. If it suited the Foreign Teacher, no deposit would be asked it could be had in all probability for an advance of six months' rent.

Feeling as though in a dream, Hudson Taylor followed his guide to the southern quarter of the city, and there found a small, compact house, perfectly new and clean, with two rooms upstairs and two down, and a fifth across the courtyard for the servants-just the very thing he needed, in the locality that suited him best, and all for the moderate sum of ten pounds to cover a half-year's rent.

What it must have been to him to pay the money over that night, and secure the premises, is more easily imagined than described. The Lord had indeed worked on his behalf. Prayer was being answered. He had not missed or mistaken the guidance for which he had waited so long. It almost seemed as if the Lord had broken silence, to confirm and encourage His servant at this critical time. And best of all was the wondering consciousness that He Himself had done it when, humanly speaking, it seemed impossible : " I being in the way, the Lord led me."

That night he took the step he had been prayerfully considering-called in a barber, and had himself so transformed in appearance that his own mother could hardly have known him. To put on Chinese dress without shaving the head is comparatively a simple matter ; but Hudson Taylor went all lengths, leaving only enough of the fair, curly hair to grow into the queue of the Chinaman. He had prepared a dye, moreover, with which he darkened this remaining hair, to match the long, black braid that at first must do duty for his own. Then in the morning he put on as best he might the loose, unaccustomed garments, and appeared for the first time in the gown and satin shoes of a " Teacher," or man of the scholarly class.


How it all opened up after this step had been taken ! Returning alone from Hang-chow Bay, Hudson Taylor hardly knew himself for the same person who had so often been tried by the petty annoyances and more serious hindrances to his work by curious and excited crowds. Plenty of people still followed him whenever he became known as a foreigner, and it was not difficult to gather an audience to listen to the Gospel. But the rowdy element seemed somehow to have disappeared with his European dress, and if he wished to pass unnoticed he was able to do so, even in the busiest streets. This, of course, greatly lessened the strain of being much alone among the people, and at the same time gave him access to a more respectable, serious-minded class.

Not suspected even of being a European until his speech betrayed him, he had a far truer, more natural point of view from which to study conditions round him, and found himself coming into touch in a new way with people and things Chinese. It was natural now to adopt their point of view as he could not before, and instinctively he began to identify himself with those toward whom he had hitherto occupied the position of a foreigner. Now he was one of them in all outward respects-dressing, living, eating as they did, and greatly lessening the cost and difficulty of providing for his needs by doing so. Altogether the change was one for which he found himself increasingly thankful, and that made this August journey of peculiar interest.

EIGHTH JOURNEY : August 24-31

Working his way back by places he had not hitherto visited, he saw a good deal of new country, and was able to observe more closely its character and needs.

" I parted from Dr. Parker last night," he wrote on August 28, {1- A letter to a friend in Hull}"and am now alone for the first time in the interior in Chinese costume. . . . I have been travelling through beautiful scenery to-day, and among some rough people. How I wish you could have seen their gratitude for medical aid ! Men and women, old and young, all seemed thankful to receive it, and much groundless suspicion against foreigners must have .been removed. Of course I am known to be a foreigner by my accent as soon as I begin to speak... .

" As you may suppose I am not yet quite at home in my new dress . . . the turned-up shoes being especially uncomfortable ; but I shall get used to them soon.. The worst inconvenience is the head being uncovered, as the Chinese wear no cap at this time of year... 2 {2- For protection from sunstroke Mr. Taylor carried a native umbrella.}

" I do not think I told you that the very evening before we left Shanghai I obtained a house in the native city for quite a moderate rent. From repeated disappointments I had quite given up the hope of getting one, . . . when just as I was preparing to send my things to Ning-po with Dr. Parker, the Lord providentially opened my way. I have every reason to be thankful for this, for I thought I was going to be houseless and homeless for the time being. How true it is that ` Man's extremity is God's opportunity.' .. .

" The change from a large household, two families besides myself, to living quite alone will no doubt have its trials, but I hope to be rewarded by increasing fluency in the language, leading to greater usefulness. Will you join me in constant prayer for more close and abiding communion with Him who never forsakes His own ? :. , May He fulfil His gracious promise, and bless my efforts to the conversion of sinners. Oh, to walk blameless in love before Him myself, and to be used in turning many from their idols ` to serve the living and true God, and to wait for His Son from heaven."'

As to the discomforts of Chinese dress, of which he was fully conscious, he was enabled from the first to make light of them, as may be seen from a letter to his sister written just after parting from Dr. Parker

HAI-YEN CITY, August 28, 1855.

MY DEAR AMELIA---By way of surprise I mean to write you a letter-for I know you have never received one before from a man with a long tail and shaven head ! But lest your head should be bewildered with conjectures, I had better tell you at once that on Thursday last at 11 P.M. I resigned my locks to the barber, dyed my hair a good black, and in the morning had a proper queue plaited in with my own, and a quantity of heavy silk to lengthen it out according to Chinese custom. Then, in Chinese dress, I set out with Dr. Parker, accompanying him about a hundred miles on his way to Ning-po. This journey we made an occasion for evangelistic work, and now that I am returning alone I hope to have even better facilities for book-distribution and preaching.

But I have not commenced the recital of my tribulations, and as there is some doubt as to whether they will all go into a single letter, the sooner I begin the better.

First then, it is a very sore thing to have one's head shaved for the first time, especially if the skin is irritable with prickly heat. And I can assure you that the subsequent application of hair-dye for five or six hours, (Litharge x part ; quick lime, freshly slaked, 3 parts ; water enough to make a cream) does not do much to soothe the irritation. But when it comes to combing out the remaining hair which has been allowed to grow longer than usual, the climax is reached ! But there are no gains without pains, and certainly if suffering for a thing makes it dearer, I shall regard my queue when I attain one with no small amount of pride and affection.

Secondly, when you proceed to your toilet, you no longer wonder that many Chinese in the employ of Europeans wear foreign shoes and stockings as soon as they can get them. For native socks are made of calico and of course are not elastic . . . and average toes decidedly object to be squeezed out of shape, nor do one's heels appreciate their low position in perfectly flat-soled shoes. Next come the breeches but oh, what unheard-of garments ! Mine are two feet too wide for me round the waist, which amplitude is laid in a fold in front, and kept in place by a strong girdle. The legs are short, not coming much below the knee, and wide in proportion with the waist measurement. Tucked into the long, white socks, they have a bloomer-.like fulness capable, as Dr. Parker remarked, of storing a fortnight's provisions ! No shirt is worn. But a white, washing-jacket, with sleeves as wide as ladies affected twenty years ago, supplies its place. And over all goes a heavy silk gown of some rich or delicate colour, with sleeves equally wide and reaching twelve or fifteen inches beyond the tips of one's fingers-folded back of course when the hands are in use. Unfortunately no cap or hat is used at this season of the year, except on state occasions, which is trying as the sun is awfully hot.

Wednesday, August 29.-I do not know, dear Amelia, whether you are weary of these details. But I have no time for more upon the subject, so will dismiss it with only a mention of the shampooing I got from the barber the other day. I thought I had better go in for it as part of the proceedings, for I might be in difficulty some day if found to be uninitiated.. So I bore with an outrageous tickling as long as I could, and then the beating commenced ! And my back was really sore in places before it was over. On the next occasion, however, I stood it better, and I hope to acquit myself creditably in time with regard to this phase of the barber's art.

While still with Dr. Parker on the way to Hang-chow Bay I was frequently recognised as a foreigner, because of having to speak to him in English, but to-day in going about Hai-yen City no one even guessed that such a being was near. It was not until I began to distribute books and see patients that I became known. Then of course my men were asked where I came from, and the news soon spread. Dressed in this way one is not so much respected at first sight as one might be in foreign clothing. But a little medical work soon puts that all right, and it is evidently to be one's chief help for the interior. Women and children, it seems to me, manifest more readiness to come for medical aid now than they did before . . . and in this way too, I think the native costume will be of service.

Thus he returned to Shanghai as summer merged into autumn, to take up in the old surroundings a very different life. For the change he had made after so much prayer was soon found to affect more than his outward appearance. The Chinese felt it, Europeans felt it, and above all he felt it himself-putting an intangible barrier between .him and foreign associations, and throwing him back as never before upon the people of his adoption. This, while he rejoiced in it for his work's sake, was not without its sting.

The covert sneer or undisguised contempt of the European community he found less difficult to bear than the disapproval of fellow-missionaries. But this also had to be faced, for he was practically alone in his convictions, and certainly the only one to carry them into effect. The more he suffered for them, however, the more they deepened ; and the more he gave himself to the Chinese in consequence, the more a new and wonderful joy in the Lord flooded his soul.

" The future is a ravelled maze," he wrote to his mother early in September, " but my path has always been made plain just one step at a time. I must wait on God and trust in Him, and all will be well. I think I do love Him more than ever, and long increasingly to serve Him as He directs. I have had some wonderful seasons of soul-refreshing lately, unworthy of them as I have been."

And to his sister a few days later: The love of God is indeed wonderful to contemplate. His longsuffering how unbounded ! If ever there was one who deserved eternal banishment from His presence, it is I ; and yet I have had such melting seasons in prayer, such manifestations of His love, and such strong faith and confidence in Him of late that I have been quite astonished at His abounding grace to one so lukewarm and unfaithful. His grace, even exceeds our unworthiness. Can we say more than this ? What a happy day it will be when, seeing Him as He is, we shall be made like Him-free from sin and perfect in purity !

And these experiences only deepened when he left the Settlement, parting from the friends with whom he had lived for months.

" Dr. Parker is in Ning-po," he wrote a little later, 1-{1- A letter to his sister Amelia, dated October 3.}" but I am not alone. I have such a sensible presence of God with me as I never before experienced, and such drawings to prayer and watchfulness as are very blessed and necessary."

Yet his surroundings were far from attractive within the walls of the native city, and his arrangements of the simplest, providing only for the bare necessaries of life. Chinese food and cooking were something of a trial at first, especially while the weather continued warm, and so were the sights and smells that could not be avoided amid that teeming population devoid of the most elementary ideas of sanitation. But the principal remains the same throughout the ages : " As the sufferings of Christ abound in us, so our consolation also aboundeth by Christ " : and the consolation, or " encouragement," as it may be read, far exceeds the loneliness and sacrifice.

It was Monday, September 17, when he resumed upon moving into his new quarters a solitary life, and only three weeks later he wrote to tell his mother of the sweetest joy he had ever known. For those three weeks had told. It is always " overflow that blesses," and a heart so full of the love of God could not but awaken in others a hunger for more than they had known. The boys in the school felt it ; the enquirers felt it, coming daily to the meetings ; patients crowding the little dispensary felt it, and stayed to hear what " the foreign doctor " had to say ; and above all Kuei-hua felt it, his own faithful servant and friend.

Fully instructed in the truths of the Gospel, the latter had for some time been a sincere believer, but now he could no longer refrain from confessing his master's God. Early one morning, therefore, he sought the young missionary, with the earnest request that he might be baptized. The day that followed was a busy one, but Hudson Taylor could not let it pass without communicating so great a joy.

" This morning," he wrote just as the mail was leaving, " my heart was gladdened by the request of Kuei-hua (my adopted pupil's brother) to be baptized. The Lord has been working a manifest change in him of late ... but not until to -day has he asked to be admitted into church membership. I cannot tell you the joy this has brought me. . . . ` My soul doth magnify the Lord, and my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour.' Were my work ended here, I feel I could say with Simeon, `Lord now lettest Thou Thy servant depart in peace ... for mine eyes have seen Thy salvation.' If one soul is worth worlds, mother, am I not abundantly repaid ? And are not you too ? "

But this was not the only encouragement of which he had to tell before the month was over. For that October mail brought another letter from Mr. Berger. Satisfied with the use made of his first gift of ten pounds, this kind friend now repeated it, undertaking to do so every half year, and thus provide entirely for Han-pan's education. But more than this, he wrote " a very affectionate letter," urging the young missionary to expect great things from God, and enclosing a further sum of forty pounds to be used as he thought best in the interests of the work.

It seems to have been with an almost solemnised sense of the goodness of God that Hudson Taylor pondered all this in the light of the past, and in its relation to the future. How long he had looked forward to the joy of winning his first convert among the heathen. How keenly he had felt lack of means properly to develop the work ! Now souls were being given, not Kuei-hua only, but one or two other promising enquirers ; and this generous friend in England was being drawn more and more into sympathy with the line of things to which he felt himself called. It was all so wonderful, so like God !

What the future held he could not tell. But already the Lord was more than making up for plans they had had to abandon, and for all the trials undergone. And straight to his heart came the message of Mr. Berger's letter

" Open thy mouth wide, and I will fill it." Oh yes ! God is not straightened. If we expect much from Him, He surely will not disappoint us.

Click for the next chapter: Hudson Taylor in Early Years - Growth of a Soul | Ch. 26-30