It was said by Jim Elliot, a missionary to South America who lost his life, with 4 other men, while trying to reach the Auca indian tribe with the gospel in 1956, “He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep, to gain what he cannot lose.” He wrote frequently in his private journals of his desire to be consumed by God. Jim Elliot never got the chance to work with the people his heart was burdened for. However, his wife Elisabeth and their young daughter, Valerie, returned several years later and ministered to the Aucas. Eventually, through their efforts, the language was translated and the gospel was shared and received by many among the tribe. Elisabeth dedicated much of her life to working among them. She loved the people who had murdered her husband and that was a testimony to the love God had for them as well. That kind of love only comes from a transformation in the heart which is generated by God Himself.
If you find yourself troubled by unanswered questions and lingering doubts, you’re not alone. Many have considered the evidence shown in the Bible without accepting Christ as their personal Savior and Lord. But others, like Jim Elliot, have believed with their whole being that God is who He says He is and dedicated themselves in to service for Him (and in Jim’s case, even giving his life).
Many have found that it takes far more to believe in Christ than evidence, reason, and probability. Just as important is the factor of personal choice and autonomy. The relationship between the mind and will, however, is not easy to understand. So how can we sort out the relationship between facts, perceptions, and will? One answer is to be open to the possibility that God can do what we cannot do. If Christ is who He claims to be, then we are not alone. If Christ really did rise from the dead, His Father stands ready to give assurance of understanding to anyone who wants to do the will of God. Jesus said to a group of skeptics in John 7:17, If anyone chooses to do God’s will, he will find out whether My teaching comes from God or whether I speak on My own (NIV).
While there are very real questions about spirituality and eternity, those issues are matters of faith, the evidence is real, and the choices are our own. If you would like more information on the choice of Christianity, try this short booklet from RBC Ministries, “Why We Believe: Evidences For Christian Faith.” It’s a free PDF download. You can always send us email if you’d like more personal assistance, or simply refer to the “Searching?” tab on this site.