Many years ago, I had the opportunity to go to a christian boarding school in Zellwood, Florida. My dad was a minister, and this school was loaded with PK's and MK's. One of the MK's (missionary kids) was the younger brother of Elisabeth Elliot.
Jim & Elisabeth Elliott and 4 other missionary families had flown into the remote area of Ecuador where the Auca Indians lived, and there they began to live among the indians and share their faith in Jesus with these natives.
During that school year, Elisabeth's husband, Jim Elliott, and the other 4 other missionaries were murdered by some of the Auca's. I remember clearly the day we all got that news during a chapel service.
This is a round about memory, so bear with me...
Fast forward from those days, to a Billy Graham World Congress on Evangelism, Amsterdam 2000, which my dad was a part of.
The story that still gives me goose bumps, is dad coming home and sharing with us the most memorable thing of that conference... the riveting testimonies from 2 of those Auca Indians whose spears had murdered the 5 missionaries years earlier. They stood and told their stories, their hearts and voices full of emotion, as they shared how their lives were completely changed, because of Jesus. Dad said it was utterly amazing...there was not a dry eye among those 1000's of ministers and leaders in the audience that day.
Some of the wives & families of the men who were killed, Elisabeth Elliott, Rachel Saint, and others, had returned to that land after their deaths, to continue to minister to the Auca's. They saw God's life changing power transform many of them, including these 2 who stood and emotionally told their stories, and gave praise to God with the story that never gets old... the story of redemption!
Doesn't it build your faith when you read about the testimonies of how God has intervened and changed lives and made the old new... just like He's done for us.
You've probably read their story, and seen some of the movies on their lives. Still... in this day and age when we elevate people to hero status over so little, I love to read and re-read the stories of those who really lived what they claimed, and were willing to die for their faith, as Jim Elliott said...
"He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose."