Why I Started Writing:
I remember all too well when my mother gently tried to make me read classic books during my junior high years. I don’t know who experienced greater displeasure through that experience, but I was definitely more interested in baseball and adventures than books. When I was about fourteen, however, I actually enjoyed a homework assignment to write and illustrate a book (my topic … you guessed it, baseball and adventures), and in high school, I won second place for an essay about what our nation’s foreign policy should be. I was beginning to catch the writing bug.
As I journeyed through college and into young adulthood, a passion slowly grew within me to communicate God’s great truths through writing articles and eventually books. My primary motives were to encourage Christians, to evangelize not-yet-Christians, and to equip Christ-followers for ministry. Today writing books is among my most joyful activities; a friend recently asked me where my “happy place” is, and I replied it is writing books.
Authors Who Have Influenced Me:
The first two books that captivated my heart and captured my imagination were A Man Called Peter by Catherine Marshall and Through Gates of Splendor by Elisabeth Elliot. Reading these two books during my early twenties ignited a love for reading and opened my eyes to what it looks like for a young man to be totally abandoned to Christ. More recently, a book called Finding Anna by Christine Schaub also grabbed my heart—an historical novel about how the hymn “It Is Well With My Soul” came to be. Currently, two of my favorite authors are Eric Metaxas and David McCullough, both gifted biographers.
Books I Have Written:
My first published book was Finding God in the Bible, a Bible study workbook that presents the basic gospel message. This book was birthed by a desire to communicate the gospel to a loved one, knowing that a conversation about spiritual things was very unlikely. Eventually, I decided to seek its publication, and I have used the book as a tool to help lead several of my friends into a personal relationship with Christ.
My second book was Too Amazing to Keep to Yourself. This book about personal evangelism explores how we can bring our friends to Christ … and keep them as friends. How can we share our faith in a winsome and respectful manner, without beating anyone over the head? Too Amazing to Keep to Yourself seeks to answer that question.
My third published book was Where No One Has Heard, a biography of J. Christy Wilson, Jr. Christy was the first person to bring the gospel to Afghanistan during the mid-1900s when missionaries were not welcomed. He also helped launch the Urbana missions conference, taught private English lessons to the crown prince, pastored the only church permitted on neutral soil in the entire nation of Afghanistan, and faced danger on numerous occasions.
What I'm Working On Now:
I am currently working on two new manuscripts. The first is tentatively entitled Ministering … Without Being in the Ministry, and it is all about living a life of ministry for laypersons. It seeks to answer the question, “As one who is not in vocational ministry, how can I make my life count for Christ?”
The second is entitled Impassioned, and it describes the defining moments that shaped the lives of ten great evangelists. It seeks to answer the question, “What gave these ordinary people such a consuming passion to spread the gospel to their world?”