When I was eighteen, I read a book* that became a defining influence upon my life. It was a biography written by Elisabeth Elliot about the life of Amy Carmichael who was missionary to India in the early 1900s. As a young woman in Ireland, Amy felt God calling her to give up the pursuits and pleasures of the world and become fully consecrated to Him.
My afternoon nap ended abruptly as I awoke to a constriction in my chest, difficulty breathing, and a general sense of panic flooding through my body. “Something’s wrong…” was all I could say to my husband before I began to weep uncontrollably.
The air felt oppressively hot and sticky. A haze of dust and grime engulfed me as I watched dirty, half-naked children scamper around the rows of ramshackle cardboard houses. It was hard to fathom that hundreds of people actually lived in this cramped, filthy neighborhood — one of many “colonias” (poor, make-shift communities) near Juarez, Mexico. Most of the ho
Slipping into the bathroom of our single-wide mobile home on the orphanage property, I pulled the thin plastic door closed behind me. I was barely holding myself together and, not wanting to alarm anyone else by my internal battle becoming an external display of tears, I sought out the only place that had some measure of privacy. I fell to my knees and pressed my eyes tightly shut.&
The stillness of the African night was shattered by a piercing scream. Fair-skinned, red-haired Mary Slessor hurried out of her hut, a concerned look on her face. As she stood listening, she heard the sound of yelling and drumming growing steadily louder in the distance.