Believers can often develop “tunnel vision” of what God is doing at any given time. We’re aware of how He is working in our lives, in the lives of our friends, family, and those in our church, and we possibly get updates from a missionary overseas. But we often miss the big picture of how God is active around the world. Dispatches from the Front by Tim Keesee, Executive Director of Frontline Missions International, is a fantastic antidote to such spiritual myopia. If you’re familiar with the Dispatches from the Front DVD series also put out by Frontline, then you will find many of the same stories in the book (with some additional background), as well as some completely new ones.
It’s hard to categorize Dispatches. On the surface, it’s a compilation of Keesee’s journal articles spanning over a decade as he visits gospel workers and observes their labor in over 25 countries in 8 different regions of the world. But different parts of it could also just as easily be classified as history, war correspondence, travelogue, prayer letter, and biography. More importantly however, it serves as both an encouragement and a challenge to those who believe in the power of the gospel. And ultimately it provides a motivation to pray.
Be encouraged as you read about the transformation that the gospel has caused in the predominantly Muslim and, until recently, unreached Gola tribe in Liberia, Africa. Be challenged as you meet Jonny the youth pastor of the church in the Gola village of Jawajeh and learn of his service for others—from a wheelchair. Be motivated to pray for the gospel to continue to advance among these unreached Muslim tribes of West Africa.
Turn a few more pages and be encouraged by the story of men and women in northern India who have turned from serving dead idols to the living God. Be challenged by Pastor Aashish and a handful of new believers who risk baptism in a flooded river at first light despite radical Hindu anti-conversion laws. Be motivated to pray that God will continue to break through the darkness of idol worship and Hindu persecution.
These are just two of dozens of stories you will encounter as you read Dispatches from the Front. Be encouraged that God is at work and the gospel is powerful around the world. Be challenged to cast off your spiritual nearsightedness and know afresh a God who is calling out people for His name in places you’ve never heard of. And ultimately, be motivated to pray that God might use you to further His kingdom either here where you are, or by finances, prayer, or in person on the frontlines of spiritual darkness.
Written By: Andy Anglea