Home > Friends, Spotlight > spotlight: Elisabeth Elliot visits the Pitts

spotlight: Elisabeth Elliot visits the Pitts

Who does this?

How many authors would receive a letter from a young Christian wife-to-be, respond with a heartfelt letter and signed book, keep of the young woman’s name and address, look up her phone number in the white pages, call her up, and schedule a time to drop by and visit her – and all of this taking place over the course of several years and requiring hundred of miles of travel?

Elisabeth Elliot Gren and her husband, Lars Gren, that’s who.

God’s kind irony in all of this?

Only weeks earlier the young woman and her husband gave birth to their first daughter, lovingly named Grace Elisabeth Pitts in honor of the woman’s hero, Elisabeth Elliot Gren.

Here is the story as that young mother, and Beth’s best friend, Sarah Pitts tells it on her blog:

20081118-ee1Last week Elisabeth Elliot Gren and her husband Lars came and visited me, Tina (Sarah’s husband Matt’s mom) and Grace at our apartment.

It was a short, sweet visit, and we got to snap a picture of Grace meeting her namesake (Grace Elisabeth).

In case you’re wondering, “Why in the world would such a godly amazing woman visit you, Sarah?” Here’s a little bit of back story:

A couple of years ago after Matt and I were first married, I wrote a long letter to Elisabeth thanking her for her life and ministry. The Lord has used her incredible example to “teach me the shape of godliness” as a woman. Specifically there are three books that have significantly taught me through her example and teaching: Passion & Purity, Let Me Be a Woman, and The Shaping of a Christian Family.

When the Lord saved me in late junior high, one of the first books that was given to me was Passion & Purity, which tells of Elisabeth’s courtship with Jim Elliot when they were in college. Her example of seeking the Lord through that season, coupled along with her picture of what a godly man and husband should be, truly shaped future relationships I had with guys. If ever I thought about dating someone, there was this huge picture in my mind of what a man should be, not just a “Christian guy” but a “godly man.” I believe it saved me much heartache and regret.

When Matt and I were engaged I read Let Me Be a Woman, which Mrs. Gren wrote as a wedding gift for her daughter Valerie years ago. It helped form my ideas regarding womanhood and marriage (and I think Matt is grateful I read it as well!).

Lastly, at the time I wrote the letter, I was reading The Shaping of a Christian Family and already seeing fruit in my own life, and the ways I viewed motherhood and children.

A month later I received a sweet letter from her, and a signed copy of one of her books. Wow! I remember distinctly that I had had a bad day that day, and I cried when I received the letter, because it seemed like the kindness of the Lord displayed to me.

Well last week I received a phone call at home, and it was Lars Gren (Elisabeth’s husband) saying that they were in town and since the letter I had sent had been so sweet, would I want to meet them?

Um, YES I would.

I told him I was taking care of our newborn baby girl, and that she was named after his wife. He said he would check their schedule and call me back. When he did call we set up a time for them to come over. To MY apartment…which hadn’t been vacuumed in three weeks.

So needless to say, I tidied up for them.

I ask you, how do you prepare your home for a visit from the woman that God has used to shape your life? How do you show her hospitality? In my case I offered them water, which they accepted.

The most interesting aspect of thoe whole story is how natural and easy the whole experience was, as if it were nothing in the world for these two precious people to drive from Dallas and sit in my tiny living room and chat. I think the whole thing is still sort of surreal.

I’m glad Tina was there to bear witness that it actually happened!

What a great story!  How many people get to have their hero over to sit and hold the child who was named after them?

Not many. But we sure are glad that Sarah was one of them.

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  1. Mello
    November 19, 2008 at 9:13 pm

    oh my goodness i have chills…
    i think i just wet my pants

  2. Lynn Fox Adams
    July 17, 2009 at 8:35 am

    I met Elisabeth Elliot years ago while I was living in a nursing home at age 37, she wrote me a letter and told me how to write a book. Well, God has done the unthinkable and my book is now available nation wide and online. There is a picture of her in my book. I would love for her to read it… I desperately need her address, can you help me with this. The address I have is old. Thanks Lynn Fox Adams, author

    Here’s the link:

    http://www.tatepublishing.com/bookstore/book.php?w=978-1-60799-592-0

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