She Gave It All She Got

Betty Fields was a force to be reckoned with, unrivaled in her childlike faith in Jesus, her stewardship over God’s creation and her strong work ethic. She lived her life with an all-or-nothing attitude, unafraid and unabashed—and she did it for Jesus.

Broken Heart for Asia

Every visitor who walked through the lobby doors of GFA World’s administration building in Texas saw Betty’s smiling face and heard a cheerful greeting, welcoming them to the ministry she had dedicated her life to. She faithfully manned GFA’s reception area for 20 years.

GFA was more than a workplace to Betty. It was the means to see generations come to know Christ’s love. Before joining GFA, Betty had seen firsthand the struggles of those living in poverty—and without Jesus—when she visited Asia on a mission trip.

“If I think about all the things that I saw and the need,” she said, “it would break my heart again all over.”

Betty knew she had to help those precious people come to know the love of her Savior, so she joined GFA staff. She was 55 at the time.

Betty never lost excitement for the ministry.

“It’s a thrill for me just to come here every day and be a part of it,” she said 20 years later.

Betty’s commitment to the ministry showed in every area of her life—especially in the 40 national missionaries and more than 10 staff families she supported in her lifetime.

Betty’s Ministry

The front desk was Betty’s battle station. If there was no visitor to greet, it was where Betty helped with administrative tasks, where she prayed, where people went for encouragement or to receive a hug. It was the place where faith was reforged and joy was restored.

It was a rare event for someone to walk past Betty’s desk without being loved by her.

“Hey, honey!” Betty would call out to staff as they walked through the front lobby doors, her midwestern accent causing smiles to curl the lips of even the most downturned mouth.

Children were offered animal crackers in exchange for hugs from Auntie Betty, as she was affectionately called; adults were told stories of how “God is just so good!” and visitors were given the opportunity to hear the Gospel.

“I don't care if it’s a vendor or someone just visiting,” Betty said, “I want to know if they know Jesus Christ is their Lord and Savior.”

If a visitor didn’t know the Lord, she gave them Gospel tracts and shared about the glory of salvation in Jesus. If they knew Jesus, she made sure they had plenty of GFA materials to read before their visit was finished.

God’s Faithful Steward

Betty wasn’t one to sit around doing nothing. She was a hard worker, and if there was something to do around the GFA office, she was going to find it.

“I don't care if it’s a vendor or someone just visiting... I want to know if they know Jesus Christ is their Lord and Savior.”

“We would sometimes hide work that we needed to save for someone else,” says Ruth, who was Betty’s manager.

Betty’s work ethic was obvious in her special love for God’s creation. To Betty, taking care of the land was taking care of God’s land; it was being a good steward of His creation. There were times she would mow a neighbor’s lawn or a lawn a few streets over from her own because it just needed to get done. It may have been just grass to some people, but to Betty it was “the Lord’s grass,” and we were supposed to be the caretakers.

Betty once tried to get GFA’s Facilities crew to teach her how to drive one of their industrial mowers. With Betty being well into her 70s at the time, though, that wasn’t considered the best idea.

Betty saw everything as a gift from God—her house, her lawn, the sunshine, the rain, her flowers, the GFA campus, the front desk—and she was going to give it her all to show her Creator how much she appreciated His gifts.

An Overwhelming Love

Betty loved fiercely. She loved her children, grandchildren and great-grandchild deeply. She loved the brothers and sisters on the field. She loved GFA and the staff. But mostly, Betty loved Jesus. She loved Him with every fiber of her being and wanted others to know His love. She prayed and prayed for people—near and far—to know their Savior.

“One time, as I headed up the stairs to my cubicle,” recalls Shelley, a GFA staff member, “the familiar call of Auntie Betty chased me through the lobby: ‘Hey, honey girl, you’re not going to walk by without giving me a hug, are you?’ After an embrace, Betty asked about my brother, who was struggling with addiction. Betty had been praying for him to encounter Jesus in a mighty way. And I believed her, that she had been praying and that my brother would encounter Jesus in a powerful way. Betty inspired that kind of confidence.”

“If you’re going to serve the Lord... there’s only one way to do it: with all you’ve got.”

When Betty prayed, she prayed with child-like faith that whatever she asked for was as good as done because she believed God and His Word. She believed in His goodness; she believed in His power; she believed in His love. She may not have always seen His answers to her prayers as quickly as she wanted, but she trusted Him to do what He knew was best. She trusted Him because, to Betty, Jesus was her faithful Husband.

Passing of a Saint

Our dear Betty departed to be with the One whom her soul loved in 2019. She would probably not like that this story was written of her—and she’d most likely let me know—but hers is a life worth remembering. She left a mark on many people’s lives, and now she is seeing the fruit of her dedication while she was here on earth.

Betty Fields serving at GFA World

Betty Fields serving faithfully at the front desk at GFA World's office in the USA.

"If you're going to serve the Lord," Betty said, "there's only one way to do it: with all you've got."

And Betty did just that.

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*Names of people and places may have been changed for privacy and security reasons. Images are GFA stock photos used for representation purposes and are not the actual person/location, unless otherwise noted.

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