Archive for November 1st, 2020

Gospel Champions


Excerpted  from a devotional written by Jill Weber, a contemporary Christian spiritual director and the Director of Houses of Prayer at 24-7 Prayer.

In his book, The Lord of the Ring, Phil Anderson tell us about 36-year old Johan Leonhard Dober and 26-year old David Nitschmann, “The two men were among the first missionaries to be sent out in Protestant church history, the first to go as lay workers rather than theologically trained ministers, the first to be sent by a church rather than a state body or society, and the first to work among slaves.” They left Copenhagen harbor for the Danish West Indies in 1732.

Backing them up was their Moravian community in Herrnhut, Saxony (now Eastern Germany), who were praying literally 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. During the decades that followed, Moravians went to the slaves of the Caribbean, the Eskimos of Greenland and Newfoundland, the black South Africans, and the American Indians. They reached Ceylon, South America, the Far East, and the Russian and Arab worlds. By the end of the century, this tiny village of around 300 people was responsible for sending out over 1,000 missionaries to virtually every part of the known world.

Dober and Nitschmann had wanted to sell themselves into slavery. When they were prevented from doing so, they instead took manual jobs on plantations so they could have close access to the slaves they were trying to reach. I can just imagine these men considering their series of firsts. It’s never been done before. Well, high time that somebody did it then! They jumped out of the box, colored outside the lines, and they made Church history.


Written by Jill Weber, author of the meditation.

God, I ask for creativity and courage to innovate. Even now, in the quiet, would You show me how we can break new ground together? 

Jesus, I give you my selfish pre-occupation and my instinct for self-preservation. Lamb that was slain, I fix my eyes and my heart on You. I offer up myself to You today that You may receive the reward of Your suffering. Here I am, Lord. Send me.

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