Quipu Runners

By  Sam Whatley – a member of Legacy Anglican Church

We have all felt our contribution to the Lord’s work was of little importance. The needs of the world can overshadow us. Our physical and financial resources can look so small. But before we are tempted to give up something we are doing for the Lord, let us be encouraged by a secret discovered in Peru in 1533 AD.

When the Spanish conquistadors invaded the land of the Incas they were astounded to find that whatever the Inca emperor declared was known in villages the next day 150 miles away. In ten days it was known 1500 miles away. This was done without horses or vehicles of any type. The secret was a cadre of boys known as chasqui who formed a very effective postal system.

Each boy ran with all his might about two miles from one hut to another along a stone road. Just before each runner arrived at his destination he blew a conch horn to alert the next boy to be ready. As he approached the hut he drew from his pouch a handful of knotted cords called quipu. The new runner would put these coded messages in his pouch and run to another relay station.

For fifteen days at a time a runner would be prepared to make this journey at top speed. He only ran from one hut to the next and back. Therefore he knew every rock, tree, bush, and stream in all kinds of weather, day and night. That two miles was his and he memorized every step of it. He could not read the hidden messages contained in the colored cords of the quipu. Other men were trained for that. The runner could only run and only on that one stretch of road. Yet his performance of that solitary task was critical to the livelihood of six million people.

I think we in God’s service are much like the quipu runners. We are part of God’s kingdom, part of the very body of Christ. Yet we have what seem to be menial tasks: teaching Sunday school, singing in the choir, mowing the grass, or cleaning up the church. Sometimes we wonder what real difference we are making. The needs all around us seem to dwarf our efforts and resources.

If we could only learn from those young men who ran to their physical limits without even knowing the significance of their messages. Thank God we know how important our message is. It is life to those who are dying and sight to those who are blind.

Therefore as the writer of Hebrews 12:1 tells us, “…let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.” (NIV)


About Legacy Anglican Church

Why the name Legacy? Simple, our focus is on leaving a spiritual legacy in Montgomery. We desire to leave behind a church where our children and children's children can worship the God of the Bible, develop a living personal relationship with Him, and learn the word of God. As we read in God's word "we will tell the next generation the praiseworthy deeds of the Lord, his power, and the wonders he has done.” - Psalm 78:4 We invite you to visit and experience the Legacy! 
The Reverend Doug McCurry Pastor of  the Legacy Anglican Church
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One Response to Quipu Runners

  1. Shawn Cole says:

    I LOVE this story and its lesson. Such an excellent lesson……we have our part and while we may not see the big picture yet, we are jsut called to do our part…..Thanks for your widsom and Christian witness in all you do, Fr. Doug. Shawn Cole

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