Where There Was No Church
Before I wrote Boundless, I had the chance to participate in a book project that still has significant value, particularly for those who have read Boundless and want to learn more.
In 2007, I had the opportunity to travel to Thailand where I interviewed a man doing remarkable work in the Middle East. He used the Qur’an as a bridge to help his Muslim friends begin to read the Bible. By approaching the Qur’an and other aspects of Islamic culture with respect, he was able to speak openly of his life of prayer and of his belief in Isa al Masih (Jesus the Messiah).
As I listened to this man, I was impressed not only by the dramatic events that happened to him but also by his inclusive way of inviting others into his spiritual journey.
About a year after my trip to Thailand, I was asked to write a story about this man for a book called Where There Was No Church: Postcards from Followers of Jesus in the Muslim World. My chapter is called “Finding the Saviour Through the Qur’an.” I wrote it under the pseudonym C. J. Daniel because I was thinking of moving to India at the time and I wanted to hide my identity.
I recommend this book for anyone who wants to learn more about how to build friendships across cultures.
Here are a few of the things people have said about Where There Was No Church:
- “Is it really possible to see reproducing groups of Jesus’s disciples among Muslims? Are there theologically sound and innovative principles which any self-sacrificing Jesus-follower can apply so that many Muslims can become his disciples reaching their own people without having to become ‘Western?’ Yes! These exciting and sometimes heart-wrenching stories of God’s amazing work among Muslims deal with these and other possibilities. Don’t miss it!” – Dr. Kent Parks, CEO of Mission to Unreached Peoples, and Co-Facilitator, Ethne, who served among Southeast Asian Muslims for 20 years
- “This compilation of true stories is a must read for all who want to learn from the experiences of others. It gives great insights into the practices that God is blessing in raising up Jesus followers among Muslims. Don’t leave home without it!” – Dr. J. Dudley Woodberry, Dean Emeritus of the School of Intercultural Studies, Fuller Theological Seminary
- “I have used Where There Was No Church in a small group setting to encourage creative ways to think about mission. Each person, no matter what their background or previous experience with cross-cultural ministry, could identify in some way with the stories. The book caused each of us to stop, think and pray for those who do not have the same freedoms as we do, and encouraged us to reexamine how we see and do church in our own context.” – Rev. Lanny Arensen, International Director, AIM, England
- “Where There Was No Church is a training manual that brings together stories of fruitfulness from those serving in some pretty tough places. Listen to their testimonies and discover how God is working; then, survey the descriptive list of fruitful practices that provide proven principles gleaned from fruitful practitioners. I use Where There Was No Church with IMB workers as they prepare for ministry among unreached people groups. – Dr. Jim Haney, Director, Global Research International Mission Board, USA
You can buy the book at these sites.
Please get the book and let me know what you think.