Early in 1959, Ruth left her home on the South Dakota prairies and traveled by cargo ship to Hong Kong, on the south coast of China. She was answering a call from God.
The ship’s officers smiled in amusement and asked, “What do you think a twenty-two-year-old girl like you can do in Hong Kong?”
She thought she knew-until she found herself a “foreign devil girl” surrounded by poor working class people, whose language, culture, and life experiences were totally foreign to her. God was her only confidante and friend as she struggled to learn how to fulfill her mission.
Cantonese is one of the most difficult Chinese dialects to learn, and her “teacher” didn’t know a word of English. Her attempts to speak sometimes provoked outbursts of hilarious laughter. Such experiences showed her some surprising things about herself and increased her determination to learn to speak Cantonese perfectly.
Unexpectedly challenging questions were raised about the God she introduced, and she was hard pressed to find convincing answers. But God blessed her efforts to bring people to him, and helped her as she took time to re-evaluate her own faith.
The author tells her story honestly, just as she did long ago in her journal when she recorded the “lessons” she learned through the successes and failures, joys and sorrows of her first four and a half years in Hong Kong. Her writing gives us an inspiring view of a real God at work in the life of a real person.