curriculum reviews

YWAM Publishing: Jim Elliot Book and Study Guide Review

As my TOS Crew year is coming to a close, I can look back and truly say that I was blessed with the opportunity to review some pretty awesome products.  This being one of them!  Our family has thoroughly enjoyed reading YWAM Publishing’s Jim Elliot: One Great Purpose and going through the corresponding  unit study curriculum guide has broadened our horizons.

I received Jim Elliot: One Great Purpose as an ebook ($6.99) and the matching unit study ($7.49).  These are  recommended for ages 10 and up.  Allie (14) and I both read the book.  The book was VERY well written.  I’m a slow reader and I read it in 3 days, that’s a record for me.  As the story builds, I needed to know what happened!  We shared an abbreviated version of the story with David (7) so he could work on the unit study guide with us.

The Unit Study Curriculum Guide is FULL of great resources to take this book to the next level.  We used the maps to help us understand where the story took place.  There are review questions, vocabulary, Bible verses, creative writing prompts, essay writing, arts and crafts projects, field trips, service projects, food, music, guide to other books, movies and websites and SO much more!!!  This has been an awesome study for us.  We have been totally immersed in this unit.

I had never heard of Jim Elliot before, but soon learned that my daughter Katie (who is majoring in missions in college) knew all about him. I quickly became fascinated in his life, his missions work and his legacy.  I am looking forward to reading more YWAM books about missionaries.  These are going to be great unit studies for our family!

The book starts when Jim Elliot is in school, working toward his future.  A future where he is a missionary.  A few thoughts, he wrote in his notebook, kept him very focused:

  • 90% of Christians that said they wanted to be missionaries never got to the mission field.
  • Also there were many more women in the mission field than men- for every one man who applied to be a missionary, there were 18 women.
  • He also learned that 64% of the people in the world never heard about Jesus before.
  • He calculated that every hour 5,000 people died worldwide = 120,000 deaths per day.
  • There was one Christian worker for every 500 people in the US, the rest of the world averaged 1 Christian worker for every 50,000 people.

He had lots of studying to do before he was able to head out of the country.  He remain focused, so focused that he didn’t attending school dances or even have an interest in dating.  He finally was able to go to Ecuador and had found someone to go with him, Pete Fleming.  They spent more time there studying before he could live among the people he hoped to bring to Christ.  As his dreams to share the gospel message abroad come together, he marries a girl from school who is now also in the mission field in Ecuador.  More people come into their lives.  They are all working together for the same goals.  It was great to get to know each person and their growing families.

Jim Elliot and three other missionaries are able to go further into the rain forest of Ecuador to win the trust of the Auca people. These people were feared.  They speared anyone and everyone they didn’t trust, including each other.  The more these missionaries learned about them the more they wanted to share the gospel with them.  They worked very hard to earn their trust by giving them gifts and trying to communicate with them.  Unfortunately these 4 men became martyrs.  As sad as this story is, it didn’t end there.  Amazingly, their widows were able to gain the trust of these people and lead them to Christ.  What an inspiring story!

Our journey through Ecuador and South American has just begun!  We are learning about the equator and rain forests, and have been challenged to continue to support missions and be missionaries ourselves!  I think all of our geography lessons in the future will include stories of missionaries who have served or are serving there now.  What an awesome way to learn about God’s world!!!


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