Category: Biographical Vignettes

Inspiration from a Bible Translator Whose Work Was Offensive

Have you read a good biography or autobiography lately? If not, there are good reasons why you should. Bible teacher and author John Piper testifies: When you are surrounded by a society of emotionally fragile quitters, and when you see a good bit of this ethos...

The Sustainer of Presidents

In 1789, George Washington addressed the legislators and citizens gathered in New York City to celebrate his installation as the first president of the United States. In this first inaugural address, he said; . . . it would be peculiarly improper to omit in this first...

The Strange Love of Peggy Covell

Peggy Covell had every right to hate the Japanese. She grew up in Japan, where her parents served as missionary teachers in a middle school. In 1939 it became clear that the country was unstable and so, for their safety, the family was relocated to the...

The Story of a Plodder: David Thrower

You’d never have guessed David Thrower would be a career missionary. He had always been rather nondescript. He was a believer, but didn’t have an exciting conversion story. In fact, he wasn’t sure exactly when he came to faith. He was born into a believing household...

Two Nervous Old Women Who Went Where Men Feared to Go: The Story of Hannah and Patty More

The strapping, six-foot tall church warden and his friend came hat-in-hand to the timid old ladies. “I’m personally afraid to go into Charter House,” he said. “Won’t you go?” Charter House was a small hamlet in the rural countryside near Cheddar, England, described as “so wicked...

Trusting God in Tragedy: Elizabeth Prentiss

It was an awful thing for anyone to watch, but especially difficult for a sensitive eight year old girl. Elizabeth’s father was in great pain as he suffered with tuberculosis. First it was the constant, wrenching cough. Then his stamina failed and he had to give...

Too Ugly to Love: The Story of Dorie Van Stone

She was too ugly to be loved by anyone Dorie was absolutely sure that this was true. After all, her mother told her so every time she brushed away Dorie’s attempts to hug her or sit on her lap. “Why can’t you be pretty, like your...

The Woman Who Wouldn’t Heil Hitler

The first time young Kurt Ziefle said “Heil Hitler” to his mother, he wished he hadn’t. Maria Ziefle calmly and firmly laid down the rule of the household. “We do not salute man in place of God,” she said. “In this house we will continue to...

William Wilberforce and the Great Change

William was anxious as he walked around the square one more time, trying to summon courage to face his scheduled meeting with John Newton, a friend and pastor from his boyhood. He thought back with regret over the years since they had last met in his...

William Whiting Borden: The Millionaire Who Wanted to be a Missionary

I was hoping to be inspired during some downtime as I sat in the missionary guesthouse on a recent ministry trip in Africa. In the biography section of their library, I found a book by Warren Wiersbe entitled Victorious Christians You Should Know. One of the...