Blessing and Burden

I’m back with a blog! My hiatus from the blogosphere gave me a chance to finalize the Soul Whisperer manuscript. Praise God, it’s now done! I thought it fitting with this first returning blog to share some of my intimate thoughts on the book. First off, getting the opportunity to chase a dream like this has been an enormous blessing. I cannot thank God enough for the enriching experience. It has transformed my thinking, developed better writing skills, and began a journey into the study of missional design. Despite the book’s future impact, I have personally gained in so many areas.

Coupled with the blessing was the burden of reframing evangelism in a fresh, unpredictable and revolutionizing way. Trying to accomplish that goal has clearly been the biggest mental-challenge of my life. Soul Whisperer is a 21 chapter, 300-page book (we anticipate it getting cut down in length) about Christians having spiritual influence. Although my experiences with planting churches have been daunting, the detail involved with shaping each chapter was beyond anything I had ever attempted. I naturally feel anxiety regarding its completion and reception. That’s not all ego-driven! I earnestly pray for God to use the effort because we live in a time when whole sectors of the church have dissed the current evangelism mode. The ineffective messaging church is clearly one barrier to seeing a greater movement occur in North America and other countries. In my biased view, this subject matter deserves 50 books in the next decade. Ironically, when I began the Doctoral program they told us publishers would not be interested in the evangelism topic. Yet here I am with one that will get published!

Giving you an insiders scoop, I struggled with nailing the right subtitle. This was just one of many sleepless-night-problems that had to get resolved. We eventually settled on two. I am not sure what the publishers will do with these, but I think they will serve the book well. The first ties directly to the title offering some feel for the deeper more sensitive approach: Soul Whisperer: Your Words—God’s Voice—Their Souls. The second is far more explanatory to the overall theme of the whole project: Why the Church Must Change Its View of Evangelism. Soul Whisperer espouses a needed and necessary shift from the traditional telling approach to the drawing ways of Jesus. It offers new thinking and skills on reaching people.

Again, I have no clue what will happen once it gets out in the market this fall, and if anyone will take it seriously. I am at peace, however, with a result that I cannot control. I am more concerned with it being finished properly. Can I ask you for a favor? Will you please take a moment to pray for God to shape the final product, guide the editors, artists, and formatters in putting it together in a way that will be most helpful? Pray for me as well, I have one final shot to make corrective adjustments, and that’s it! Thank you for your prayers and support.

May God’s Kingdom advance!

3 thoughts on “Blessing and Burden

  1. Joe McManus - June 22, 2012

    Gary this is fantastic!! Congratulations in your accomplishment! Michele and I will keep you and the final product in our prayers!

    1. Gary Comer - July 13, 2012

      Joe, you and Michelle are a blessing! So glad to to know you both. We’ll have to catch up one of these Sundays!

  2. Eric Oleson - July 13, 2012

    Can’t wait to see this in print. Praying it through!

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