“He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain that which he cannot lose.”
This statement was written on October 28, 1949 by Jim Elliott, not long before he headed deep into the jungles of Equador to attempt to reach the violent and mysterious Waodani Indians with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I first read this quote as a teenager and it profoundly impacted my life. When he penned this, Jim had no idea that he and four companions would be murdered by the Waodani nor did he know that his death would pave the way for two of the widows, including his, to bring God’s message of love and peace to the people who had known neither.
Many of us mistakenly live with the notion that our lives our ours to do with as we please, thank you very much, but God says otherwise.
1 Corinthians 6:19–20 (ESV) 19 Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, 20 for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.
The real beauty is that when we give up was is not really ours anyway, we gain that which we would never have attained otherwise. When we surrender our lives to God and to his will, far from robbing us of joy and fulfillment, he grants us a rich and full life and the privilege of storing up treasures in heaven (Matt. 6:19-20).
Jim Elliott understood that and it is my prayer that we do too.