“You will never get a language”, I was told, “do not even try.” Heart breaking words so hard but true to a young man that had his eyes on the unreached of the world. I had dreamed of breaking new ground just as the first missionaries of New Tribes Mission had done in the early days, the beginning days of NTM. With disappointment I sat looking back at all the things my wife and I had left behind thinking of going to the regions beyond with the gospel message. Was it over, I thought, could this be the end of my dream, my call from the Lord for missions?
Just at the right time God sent his man around to lift me up and get me back on track. It was on the road along the lake at our Language School in Missouri. A lot of men and women have been spoken to on the road along the Way as it was called in the older days. Dean Van Vliet a hero of mine from Papua New Guinea made my day. “Jack, we could use a man like you in New Guinea, what do you think?’ I was thinking this is great, they could use a man like me even with my short comings in language learning. I was like many people today blinded to what it takes to reach the “Unreached”. There is much more to it than preaching and teaching even though that is the key to reaching the unreached around the world.
Dean unleashed me to be who I am, just a laborer for Jesus, a servant, part of the team that is reaching the lost. That open door and a man full of grace and encouragement has helped me enjoy many years of service to the King that has commanded us to go. Let me encourage you to step out in faith and become part of the team. The unreached will be unreached until we reach out to be part of the team that is getting the job done. Could they use a man or woman like you on mission fields around the world, building airstrips, running rivers with supplies or flying planes, just to name a few? I think so and my prayer is, “Lord send more laborers to the fields that are white to harvest.” Jack