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Elisabeth Elliot was a young missionary in Ecuador when members of a violent Amazonian tribe savagely speared her husband Jim and his four colleagues. Incredibly, prayerfully, Elisabeth took her toddler daughter, snakebite kit, Bible, and journal . . . and lived in the jungle with the Stone-Age people who killed her husband. Compelled by her friendship and forgiveness, many came to faith in Jesus.
This courageous, no-nonsense Christian went on to write dozens of books, host a long-running radio show, and speak at conferences all over the world. She was a pillar of coherent, committed faith; a beloved and sometimes controversial icon. In this authorized biography, Becoming Elisabeth Elliot, bestselling author Ellen Vaughn uses Elisabeth’s private, unpublished journals, and candid interviews with her family and friends, to paint the adventures and misadventures God used to shape one of the most influential women in modern church history. It’s the story of a hilarious, sensual, brilliant, witty, self-deprecating, sensitive, radical, and surprisingly relatable person utterly submitted to doing God’s will, no matter how high the cost. For Elisabeth, the central question was not, “How does this make me feel?” but, simply, “is this true?” If so, then the next question was, “what do I need to do about it to obey God?”
“My life is on Thy Altar, Lord—for Thee to consume. Set the fire, Father! Bind me with cords of love to the Altar. Hold me there. Let me remember the Cross.” –Elisabeth Elliot, age 21
About the Author
Ellen Vaughn is a New York Times bestselling author and speaker who has written or co-written 23 books. Former vice president of executive communications at Prison Fellowship, she collaborated with the late Chuck Colson on a number of his seminal works. She speaks at conferences, often travels to interview Christ-followers in hostile parts of the world, and serves on the board of directors for ICM, the global church developer. With degrees from Georgetown University and the University of Richmond, Ellen lives in northern Virginia with husband Lee, a regional pastor for McLean Bible Church, a daughter and two grandchildren, and one clueless dog. She enjoys reading, hiking, drinking coffee, and staring pensively at the ocean.
"In this striking biography, Vaughn (Time Peace) sets out to discover the heart and soul of missionary and author Elisabeth Elliot (1926–2015). In the 1950s, Elliot served as a missionary to the Waodani tribe of Ecuador after her husband, Jim Elliot, and four others were killed by the tribe while trying to make contact. Vaughn recounts that story, bringing to light the deep desires, anguish, and imperfect life of Elliot, including her tense relationship with Rachel Saint, sister to another one of the missionaries who had died, who isolated herself from other missionaries among the Waodani. A deep thinker and lover of poetry who wanted nothing more than to do God’s will, Elliot eventually found her calling in ministry to Christians rather than to those outside the faith.
The biography’s second half largely deals with challenges of navigating a life of biblical faith at odds with cultural Christianity: Elliot 'chafed at the disparity between what she saw in the gospel and what she saw in the organized church,' Vaughn writes. 'She was quick to pick up the scent of hypocrisy and legalism, but she always applied such analysis to herself first.' Even those well-acquainted with Elliot’s works will find fresh perspective and revealing insights here."
- Publisher's Weekly Review