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Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Book Review: These Strange Ashes


These Strange Ashes by Elisabeth Elliot is a gentle but honest reflection on missionary life in Ecuador in the 1950s. I guess its these sorts of stories that shaped a generations understanding of what a missionary was. Although these reflections are set before the death of her (then future) husband Jim Eliott, it's his death more than anything that provided the platform for Elisabeth Eliott's books and influence.

These Strange Ashes is set in 1952-53 on her first ventures into Ecuador and attempts to reach the Colorado Indians and learn and translate their language. The stories are told with gentle humour and the wise insights of experience as she reflects on her travails of faith, the importance of missions and the struggles of life and death that she experienced in the Ecuadorian jungle.

This is neither a long book nor a difficult book to read and almost any age of reader would enjoy it. For me it is the comments of the older Elisabeth that proved to be of greater value, we should learn wisdom from those who have gone before us, suffered much and loved our Lord greatly enough to serve Him wherever that might take them. Elisabeth Eliott is one such teacher. 

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