For most of my adult life, writing has been part of my work—as a youth director, a professor, a staff member for Senator Mark Hatfield, a staff member for World Vision, and as an academic dean. But until fairly recently, I had not figured out a way for my writing to become a ministry. A dear friend and former colleague, Jan Wood, walked with Raelene and me in defining and developing that calling as we returned to George Fox University. While continuing my “day job” as an academic administrator, I committed to a part-time ministry through Good New Associates, a ministry organization Jan directs. The board and the other associates of GNA have been my encouragers and have urged me to keep at it when I was discouraged.
My ministry in writing has also been made possible through a wonderful partnership with Barclay Press in the birthing and nurturing of many of my writing projects. Dan McCracken and the staff have persisted in meticulously working through the steps from manuscript to finished product and have maintained an emphatic commitment to quality in the appearance and substance of the books.
Most of the books have also involved a partnership with other people as well—wonderful people such as David Niyonzima, Jean Thomas, Jan Wood, and Bruce Bishop. That partnership has brought me alongside those through whom God is speaking and working. It has been a joy to help these folks tell their stories. These people have in turn brought out the stories embedded in my own mind and heart.
The most important part of my partnership in writing is with you, the reader. You invest time, money, and attention to God's voice through the words of others. Without that partnership, my writing would only be a hobby. As I sit in front of the computer screen, I am able to sense the presence of you, the reader, looking over my shoulder, marveling with me at the stories of God's people. It's great to know that words can convey truth and can motivate people to think and to be obedient. Thank you for being a vital part of my writing ministry.