How One Marriage Is Changing the World
Author and evangelist Dr. Ed Silvoso knows about transformation. He is the founder of Harvest Evangelism and also Transform Our World Network, the objective of which is to end worldwide poverty. In his book Transformation: Change the Marketplace and You Can Change the World, he writes:
Something extraordinary is going on all over the world. Ordinary people are doing extraordinary things that are radically transforming schools, companies, prisons, cities, and even nations. Today millions of men and women are walking out their call to full-time ministry in the marketplace.
I initially met Ed at a women’s conference twenty-six years ago and later again at an annual Global Conference. His story and vision for transformation on a global scale have resonated with my vision to redefine healthy, godly marriages.
Ed describes how transformation takes place: “This is the real transformation taking place in real time as the result of a singular discovery: that God passionately cares—not just for people but also for the marketplace and for cities and nations.”
To understand how Ed came to this conclusion and experienced transformation himself, we need to take a look at his spiritual journey and his relationship with his wife.
The Backstory of Transformation
Growing up in Argentina, Ed received the Lord when he was thirteen years old. He was the first and only born-again Christian high schooler in a city of 120,000 people.
Not long after he graduated from high school, he was drafted into the army. From there he went into hospital administration, and during his second year at his job, he married Ruth.
In his book Women: God’s Secret Weapon, he writes: “She touched my heart like nothing else ever had. I knew a river of love existed, but I was totally unaware of how powerful it was until it invaded my soul. That day my life changed forever.”
Their courtship is a sweet story that began when Ed was still a teenager. In his own words, he made a deal with God. “I told Him that I did not want to date a series of girls to find out which one I should marry. Instead, I was determined to wait for Him to tell me when the right one came along. It was not easy, but I kept my promise.”
God honored his heart, and a couple of years later, a friend showed Ed a picture of a family with several girls in it. Ed felt the Lord saying that the girl in the lower right corner was the one for him. Ed reached for a magnifying glass and, looking at the girl more carefully, told God He had excellent taste.
At the same time Ed was looking at a picture of Ruth, Ruth was handed a picture of Ed’s youth group. In the same way, she heard God say to her, “The tall guy in the black leather jacket—he is the one I have for you.”
They met in Ed’s hometown at a church meeting Ruth attended when her family stopped on their way to her sister’s wedding in Buenos Aires. The way Ed tells it, he was so excited to meet her that he tripped right in front of her on their first visit. That was the first day of a long courtship that resulted in their marriage.
Passion for the Gospel
As much as he enjoyed his job as a hospital administrator, his greatest joy came after work when he would rush home, eat a quick dinner, and drive with Ruth to evangelistic meetings. They both relished the experience of sharing their faith with non-Christians. Their passion and longing for God’s Kingdom to come in their city was so strong that they eventually left their professions and went into full-time ministry.
In the 1970s they started doing street evangelism. Later they shared the Gospel message through radio and eventually pioneered the first Argentinian Christian television program.
Then much to their shock, Ed was diagnosed with an incurable disease called myasthenia gravis, which is similar to Lou Gehrig’s disease. The doctors at Stanford Medical Center in Palo Alto, California, gave Ed a maximum of two years to live.
Through this experience, God taught Ed many powerful lessons about transformation. One lesson was that two are stronger than one. Ed didn’t face the illness alone; Ruth not only encouraged him with words and lots of prayer, but she assisted him with the daily treatments.
The Lord also taught Ed about faith. The vision for Argentina’s salvation wouldn’t leave Ed’s heart. God placed within him a deep desire to see revival in his country.
Though treatment had stretched the initial prognosis from two to four years, he was barely hanging on.
Several revival meetings were held and reports of mass conversions surfaced. As Argentina started to turn to the Lord, Ed’s symptoms became milder and his need for medications became less. Pastors and leaders within Argentina began to ask for his training.
The Power of Faithfulness
One of my biggest takeaways from Ed’s story is how faithful he and his wife are as a couple. Their marriage has always been solid. Through the good moments and in the bad, Ruth supported her husband and contributed to the revival in Argentina, and the impacts of their work are amazing to me.
Imagine seeing a whole city lifted out of spiritual darkness. Ed’s books, teaching, mentorship, and testimony about being healed from myasthenia gravis have inspired thousands.
Ed and Ruth are also passionate about each other and family. As Ruth states in her book Food, Family, and Fun, “The Lord brought us together for a marriage made in heaven.”
They have four daughters—Karina, Marilyn, Evelyn, and Jessica, who are all happily married—and twelve beautiful grandchildren.
When I look deeper into Ed and Ruth’s story, I see a happily married couple God has empowered to do great things. At one level, it is the strength of their marriage that has made their impact on the world possible. God uses their daily love and commitment to Him and each other to bring not just a transformational teaching to many people and nations but a lifestyle that is focused on God and growing His Kingdom.
Dr. Ed Silvoso has inspired thousands of people and ministries—including Becoming the One. His ministry continues to this day.
Upcoming Transform Our World Conference
If you or a friend would love to partake in his vision and anointing, BTO would love to invite you to Ed’s 28th annual Transform Our World Global Conference on September 26–29. I pray blessings to you all!
If you are interested in Transform Our World Conferences, click the following link for more information: