Sunday, October 1, 2017

Book Review: Amy Carmichael, A Life Abandoned to God by Sam Wellman

Amy Carmichael: A Life Abandoned to God by Sam Wellman

I just love this Heroes of the Faith series.

Amy Carmichael was an ordinary woman with extraordinary love for people. She grew up where her parents were deeply devoted to Christ and raised their children to love and serve God. She learned early on the discipline of reading and the importance of a total, unswerving commitment to Christ.

Despite her beauty, Amy was not pleased with her appearance. She had brown eyes, which she found very unattractive (Oh why?). When she was young, she remembered her mother’s teaching that if she asked God anything, He would surely grant her request. So, having a simple faith at a young age, Amy proceeded to ask God to change her eye colour, not realizing that sometimes His answer is no. Much to her disappointment, they remained brown. But as the years unfolded, Amy came to realize the wisdom of God’s denial of her request. While serving the Lord in India, those brown eyes served her well and made her fit for service where God had put her. Her brown eyes allowed her to gain acceptance from the people and once she disguised as temple prostitute to save children but nobody noticed of her.

During her formative years, Amy became a very determined and well-disciplined girl. She was tough, able to deal with stress and endurance faith that equipped her for the mission field. As she grew into adulthood, Amy felt called to missions. First she went to Japan as missionary, then to China and next to Ceylon (Sri Lanka) and finally end up at Dohnavur, India where she served 65 years until she died. While living in Dohnavur, India, with a group of women that had been converted to Christ, Amy founded the Dohnavur Fellowship which became a haven for homeless children, especially those girls who had escaped from temple prostitution. While it began mainly as a haven for girls, later a home for boys was also built. There are many amazing stories – if you have little faith, you won’t believe that these stories really happened, only for those who believe in the supernatural God – of suffering and deliverances, challenges and miracles, the evil spirits and Christ the King. You got to read her story for yourself!

She wrote more than 35 books detailing her life in India that have been widely read in Christian circles and have inspired many to follow their call to the mission field (these people include Jim and Elisabeth Elliot). “Give me the Love that leads the way, The Faith that nothing can dismay,” writes Amy Carmichael, “The Hope no disappointments tire, The Passion that'll burn like fire; Let me not sink to be a clod; Make me Thy fuel, Flame of God.” Wow!

Oh, how I long for young people to read biographies of men and women of God. As I read Amy’s biography, I often think of what King Solomon wrote: “He who walks with wise men (and women) will be wise” (Proverbs 13:20, bracket mine). Walk with Amy and you’ll be a little wiser than before.

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