This week the world lost an amazing woman who I believe is the closest human representation of a Saint I will ever meet. She was in a group of select women who were the wives of missionaries located almost sixty years ago in the jungles of Ecuador. Her name was Elisabeth Elliott, the former wife of Jim Elliott who was martyred for his belief in God in January of 1956.
Elisabeth was one of the strongest and most brave women I have ever known. Her resolve to do what was right was captured in our documentary I produced BEYOND THE GATES OF SPLENDOR and later executive produced END OF THE SPEAR, the narrative feature film, both with FOX. Today, these pictures remain as two incredible statements to the faith, courage and love shared by all of these saints of God.
Now, only Olive Fleming remains to share the story in person as all four other widows have passed on to an eternity finally meeting their martyred husbands whose lives have been immortalized in books, in music and in motion pictures. What a blessing all of these brave women of faith are to each one of us who were honored to be with them personally and experience their love first hand.
This is a tribute to her and to all of the women who have done so very much for so many with so little. These women made us all better, our film team, the people behind the film, our families and beyond. Thank you Elisabeth for taking the time to write THROUGH GATES OF SPLENDOR and be a part of changing our world with love, verses fighting fire with fire.
Don't we need this kind of love even more after seeing the atrocity of Charleston this past week? In a world where there is so much hatred and prejudice, we have to be living FOR something greater and standing against evil in every way possible. This is what bravery truly is and we must all learn to become bold like these great saints of God who were not afraid to take a stand for what they believed.
Elisabeth, I want to say some things about you that I truly admired. First, your tenacity was incredible to me and the way you never hesitated to put God in front of your own lives, was a testimony of your belief. Thank you for loving your husband and for your brave stand in the jungle when others might would have ran away. The bond between all you women after the death of your husbands will always remind us of Jesus Christ and the way He wanted us all to live. Lastly, thank you for being such a supportive friend, for laughing at our silliness, for making us laugh and for being so supportive to a group of filmmakers who really needed you.
I am praying for Lars, your present husband and your precious family whom I have grown to love so much through this. It was so fun having the premiere for BEYOND THE GATES OF SPLENDOR both with the missionary families and also the Waodani families in the jungles who became your dear friends. We are all now interwoven into a story which will forever be etched in our hearts and minds.
May the Lord bless you with all the blessings of Heaven you so richly deserve. You are a saint in our hearts and I know God must have wanted you so very much. Do me a favor and go over and hug mother and I am sure she will take you all around the mansions in glory. No doubt she has been viewing yours and talking to all the missionary heroes from the jungle.
You are an amazing saint of the Lord and you are now home. Blessings to you in everything.
In His Forever Service,
Kevin McAfee is a filmmaker who writes for the purpose of inspiring others to make a difference in the world through faith in God and using the visual language of film. His blog shares the hopes of impacting culture, because his heart is in media missions and the church.