Missionary stories are a great source of apocryphal illustrations…
A missionary came back from Africa and went to some churches that had supported him.
At one of them, he told of how at one point, he had camped in the jungle overnight.
The next day he came into the nearest village, where the people came out to greet him in fear.
They told him that they had heard he was on his way, so the night before, they had gone out to kill him and steal his money and medicine. But as they approached his camp, they saw that his tent was surrounded by twenty-six armed guards. They asked him where those guard were.
“I don’t have any guards.”
But the people continued to insist that they had seen them.
At this point in the story, a man jumps up and says, “Can you remember the date that that happened?”
The missionary tells him.
“Well,” the man says, “that morning I was playing golf and felt this over-powering need to pray for you. In fact, I called into church and had them put you on the prayer chain. I wonder how many people here got that message and prayed for this missionary?”
The missionary was moved to tears as 26 men in the congregation stood up.