Monday, June 15, 2015

"God's refusals are always merciful. . . " Elisabeth Elliot

I remember the day in July 1994 when I met Elisabeth Elliot at Camp Greystone. What I remember most about this wonderful woman was her unwavering trust that God would always supply what was needed. She spoke to the campers and staff about God's provision--including her famous story of the ant that retrieved a contact lens for a mountain climber. Back then, I was in awe of her faith in God's miraculous provision. 
I know this is a very strange memory to share, but I was stunned that Elisabeth Elliot had been married three times. It seemed that God simply kept providing what she needed in a spouse when her former spouse left her to be with Jesus. I was 19 and so worried about my own future. Would I marry? Would God care for me? I wondered about this God who cared for Mrs. Elliot through the tragic loss of her first husband. I wondered about the peace she had in her heart and how she told us we could trust God to care for us--even through loss and pain and sorrow.  

Later, I read this quote of hers: “God never withholds from His child that which His love and wisdom call good. God's refusals are always merciful -- 'severe mercies' at times but mercies all the same. God never denies us our heart's desire except to give us something better.” 

I am learning that if God doesn't provide something I think I need, it can be seen as a severe mercy. I continue to learn to trust God even in His refusals. 

I'm so glad I met this wonderful woman when I did and so thankful for her life and ministry.

1 comment:

epicfarms said...

It's a thankful thing that the Lord provides me with the things He knows I need, and not the things I think I do (my list is FAR too long for my own good ;o)