| |

Dave Black on the American Dream

1893729222I just extracted a post from Dave Black’s blog and put it on The Jesus Paradigm. For those unacquainted with Dave’s blog, I do this so that I can get a permanent link, and I have his permission to do so.

Dave asks some important questions. How do our values impact the way that we live and the way that we serve? I often hear my generation telling the next one how they ought to be careful and make sure that everything is properly cared for before going into service.

On the other hand, my parent’s went overseas to serve in remote areas with all their worldly goods in a station wagon and small trailer, along with four children in the car. Was it risky? No doubt it was. Did they believe they were doing the right thing? Absolutely! I never heard them say that they would have had it any other way. They believed God had called them and they answered.

My mother tells her story in her little book Directed Paths. I’m going to offer a free copy of her book to a randomly selected commenter on this post. I’ll close the contest on Monday. Just make enough of a comment that I know you’re asking for the book and that it’s not spam.

Similar Posts


  1. Darcyjo says:

    I think it’s amazing. There are so many of us who have to have our lives totally planned out, who would be terrified of letting God send them somewhere new and strange. I really want to be someone who is willing to just GO.

    1. When you say you’re ready to go, be prepared to be surprised. Most of the best moments of my life have been totally unexpected. I think my parents would say the same thing.

  2. Craig Benno says:

    I often question modern wisdom in church planting. Get 50 plus people from another church and instantly plant it. The simple trust and obedience of those who went before us, is amazing. Though, I also wonder if there is some what of a ministry shift where, one needs to consider the methodology of the best way to engage with modern culture.

    1. It’s important to have the methodology, but at the same time, it’s critical to listen to the Spirit and ask God’s wisdom for the particular circumstances. I have witnessed so many cases in which someone looked at a successful minister/ministry’s methods and then went and tried to apply them, only to fail completely. Method is important; being in tune with the Spirit is more so. That way you discover what God is up to and move with it. (I think that’s loosely similar to something Henry Blackaby said.)

      1. Craig Benno says:

        I totally agree. His ways should always be our ways. I have a book of Henry Blackaby around here somewhere. Offhand, I think its his one on leadership. Brilliant read.

  3. Betty Rae Nick says:

    I was one of those 4 children with you, Henry. I think that being a part of their adventure for God is one of the greatest gifts they gave us. It could not have been easy to do what they did with 4 children, you the youngest at 6 years. What 4 good excuses they had to stay home! What a wonderfully adventurous, meaningful life we children had! Do you remember that foggy night we were caught on a narrow mountain road in Chiapas, Mexico? Robert was watching one side, and I out the other side window, and we kept Daddy from the side of the mountain on one side, and the precipice on the other. There was no place to pull off the road!

    1. It’s amazing what that station wagon and trailer managed! Ask mother whether she’d trade all that for anything in the world and post her response back.

      1. Betty Rae Nick says:

        I did ask mother whether “she would trade all that for anything in the world,” and she answered, “No, Never!”–and her eyes and voice filled with tears, which she said were “happy tears!” Then she said, “Speaking of that station wagon and trailer, I remember Mexico City. With its heavy traffic, circles, and one-way streets. Daddy said that the only thing between our car and the car next to us was a thin layer of paint! We got stuck on a one way street, and a policeman on a motorcycle came up to the car window. Daddy tried to explain (he was just learning Spanish), but he seemed to assess the situation, and said, ‘Sigueme (sp.)! Sigueme!’ And he took off. Daddy had quite a grip on the steering wheel, and the rest of us held our breath and hung on for dear life as he tried to keep up with the policemen as he wove in and out of traffic! Anyway, we made it through!” Then Mother said, “Let me show you how to take a bath with only 1 quart of water–during the dry season! And, this is how the doctors scrubbed for surgery–also during dry season!” It would be difficult to describe it, you would have to see her demonstrate! We continued to share old memories; we had a wonderful time! Then Mama said, “We could write an entire book, just about all these ‘everyday’ memories, and call it, “Missionary Memories!” Mother will be 97 years “young,” as she puts, in May. What a treasure she is! We all miss Daddy! I never heard him speak in frustration, or an impatient word!

  4. Steve Kindle says:

    I think that in addition to Jesus’ remark that there is no greater love than from someone who gives his life for a friend, we should include those who are willing to do so, as well. That’s describes people like your folks, Henry.

  5. Betty Rae Nick says:

    SO well expressed! There are followers of God who poured out their entire lives for 3 score years and 10, and more, or less; who no doubt will receive a martyrs crown, along with those who shed their blood. From one of my favorite spiritual writers: It is a solemn thing to die, but a far more solemn thing to live.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.