Those fragments of memory are not important. But it was a news broadcast. It was telling the world that five young missionaries had been martyred for the cause of Christ in the Ecuadorian bush.
Jim Elliot was the 'local boy' but more than that he was family. My dad and his were first cousins and very close. Fred Elliot was also supporter and mentor to my father in his own evangelistic efforts. Visiting 'Uncle Fred and Aunt Clara' in their lovely Portland home was always a treat. I was quite young but old enough to be influenced by their godly grace and by the warmth and charm of their two youngest, Jane and Jim. I looked up to these with the greatest admiration and awe. Jim in particular. He was so vital, handsome, energetic, a proper evangelical Tigger, if such a thing is possible or proper. He was the sort of young man that made a young girl's heart skip a beat.
His life, his death left a lasting imprint on my heart and mind, and on all those who his life touched in the generations that followed.
Now comes the 'friend' part. Jim's wife Elizabeth gained national prominence by her writing of the jungle incident, of the lives of the men, her husband's in particular. While I cannot in honesty claim Elizabeth as a friend I can claim her as a most important spiritual mentor. Her subsequent spiritual writings have guided, instructed, comforted and inspired me through many long years.
Life moves on and with it books and mentors are put aside or replaced. Whatever the reasons, it happens.
Recently Elizabeth and her influence has been brought back to my mind for many reasons, through different circumstances. While doing my commonplace Google activities, I discovered her webpage. It is not a blog as such, just a daily devotional thought. I thank her for that. And I recommend it to you, Dear Reader.
And I thank our God for raising up such stalwarts in each generation who leave a record of His faithfulness to enrich and encourage my life.