The Unlikely Missionary: Good Stuff

We are lounging on the floating sun deck in the middle of the Frio River–Christine, Brad, Dan, and I—when Dan and Brad start talking about Dan’s new eBook.
“It’s called The Unlikely Missionary,” he says, standing on the ladder and halfway in the water.
Chris sits up.
“Are you a missionary, Dan?”
He gets sort of a self-conscious grin on his face.
“Well, no, but that’s kind of the point.”
He tells us that his story is about how the average dude (him) can participate in mission work.
“I want to encourage the average person in the pew that they can do this.”
Because he did. More than once.
I sit up now.
Because I’m remembering a couple years ago. I’m remembering a mission trip I was invited to go on. How I longed to go. But the answer was a clear NO! at that time. And I remember thinking, maybe this isn’t for me. Maybe I’m not meant to step out in big ways.
Thinking that way made my heart hurt. And so does listening to Dan now.
“I want to read that book,” I say.
And so I do.
What I discover between those pages is one man’s heart journey—birthed from a simple desire to serve God the best way he can.
From the moment I decided to follow Christ, I never wanted to settle for lukewarm Christianity. I was 28 years old at the time, and I never looked back. See, I’m not a seminary-trained pastor or some big-time, faith-based non-profit CEO. I’m just a guy with a regular job and a regular family who sits in the regular church pews that most people do…I’m a normal dude who wants to be used by our big God.

Dan’s desire to reach others with the message of God’s great love led him to blogging and that led him to explore ways he can help the needy and that led him to the organization Five Talents International.And they would eventually lead him to Africa.

What I discovered in this book is not so much a “how-to” manual. Not so much a “this is the way you become a missionary” story. This is no step-by-step guide to emerging from the pew. The Unlikely Missionary is a beautiful tale of obedience and courage in being faithful to where God calls in each moment.

What The Unlikely Missionary has given me is a precious gift of affirmation. It’s this affirmation that when I seek God with all my heart–when I seek Him first—He will take me on great adventures with Him. And all these tiny yeses I’ve been saying? Just maybe they will make the bigger ones easier. I think Dan said it best:
You may not end up in Africa like I did. You may end up finding more purpose right at home in your own backyard or your office or your neighborhood or your school district. The location isn’t as important as doing the things that will allow God to use you to the fullest…be encouraged that I’m not asking you to take on the world. I am asking you to start a journey of discovery that will transform your life if you let it.

 Check out The Unlikely Missionary: From Pew-Warmer to Poverty Fighter on AmazonKindle here.


  1. says

    Sounds like an amazing book. I just happen to have a Kindle. 🙂 This post spoke to me, wanting to “seek Him first to go on adventures with Jesus.”


  2. says

    Thank you for this review! And I had no idea that our little group conversation IN the Frio had such an impact on you! Reading this review makes me feel like I’ve accomplished my mission…

    #fistbump dude.

  3. says

    Just catching up on my reading. I finished Dan’s book while on my trip. I love what you said about it, about him, here. I can just picture you all floating on that dock, having this conversation. I’m so glad Dan told his story. It is a beautiful tale of obedience and courage.

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