This article was originally published in the January 2022 edition of ITMI Monthly.
Have you heard of Ted Geisel? I’m pretty sure that you have heard of him, just not by this name.
Ted was somewhat entrapped on a ship as it crossed the Atlantic on stormy seas in the fall of 1935. Eight days of agonizing monotony combined with the ever present rhythmic thumping of the ship’s engines was driving Ted crazy.
The story goes, Ted’s wife finally suggested that he distract himself by writing silly rhymes to the rhythm of the engines’ thumping. This idea from Ted’s wife changed the lives of millions of people, including Ted’s.
Once off the ship Ted had this rhyme that he couldn’t get out of his mind. Six-months later Ted Geisel, the children’s author you know as Dr. Seuss, completed his first children’s book. Ted or Dr. Seuss later shared that “I wrote the book to get it out of my head.”
Ted’s book didn’t sell. Twenty-seven rejection later, he was headed home to burn the manuscript. That is when he ran into an old college buddy from Dartmouth who was the Juvenile Editor for Vanguard Press. They say twenty minutes later Ted had a book deal.
It has also been said that since those irritating ship engines in 1935, Dr. Seuss has sold over 600,000 children’s books. I would like to adjust that to say, without the help of Ted’s wife and the old classmate, Marshall “Mike” McClintock, the “Cat in the Hat” and all the other well-known children’s books would not have been.
My encouragement today is to not focus on the books Ted produced for generations of children and their parents, but on what Ted’s wife and classmate did to help Ted become something that he never knew was possible.
God uses the difficult times to help us become all that He created us to be. He also uses us to help others see all that God intended them to be. We get to pour into people like Piotr, Andrew, Adi, Ema, Paul, Johan, Molly, Charl, Kelly, Cherise, Fifi, Gerhard, Olga, David, Taru, and many more.
Culture in India pounds constantly like the never-ending thump of the ocean liner’s engines. The never-ending cultural drone that you cannot step out of your predetermined caste or social status. This is crushing to the minds and lives of most all Indians.
The never-ending cultural drone that you cannot step out of your predetermined caste or social status is constant.
Those in the lower castes don’t dare to rise above any number of understood life expectations. The wealthy or more fortunate don’t feel the need to reach down and help the lower caste dwellers since they are in this caste because they “deserve” to be there.
David and Taru continue to minister in their God-ordained areas of ministry, both in the Muslim slum and to rural, untrained pastors who desperately want to know more of God’s Word and wisdom. Yet they are always willing to stretch beyond their “normal” acceptable ministry areas whenever God leads us to encourage and suggest new opportunities for God to be known in their land.
The influence and help provided by ITMI and our supporters, daily plays out in the lives of ITMI’s national partners from Eastern Europe through Africa and into India and beyond. Thank you for being one of the ones that enable those on the ground in each of these areas to experience and share God’s blessing and His provision when they step out in faith.
Six hundred thousand books later for Ted, and many souls and changed lives later for ITMI - because we all did what God called us to do. Blessings and flourishing to you, amidst and in spite of the world’s constant whirring and pounding in 2022. Our God reigns and nothing can stop His plans.
In His Service,
About the Author
Steve Evers has advocated for and served the ITMI partners as ITMI Director since 2001. Approximately once a year, Steve visits with ITMI partners in their countries and brings stories back to encourage supporters. Steve enjoys photography and mechanics, (both hobbies that have greatly benefited ITMI partners!) Prior to becoming ITMI's Director, Steve served on the Board of Directors for 4 years. Steve lives in Arizona with his wife, Darlene.
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