The God You May Not Know

vol#1 cover

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What others are saying:

If you don’t like to read long biographies but love short stories, if the exploits of extraordinarily gifted individuals often leaves you wondering whether God ever uses ordinary people like you to accomplish his global agenda, if you find yourself wondering whether the Gospel is really the power of God unto salvation for all nations, if you want to understand why “missions” is part of the DNA of our denomination, then this book may have been written just for you.  Just the introduction made me want to read it. Sunder Krishnan, Rexdale Alliance Church

This book should come with a warning. Consumption may result in:  focused resolve to be about God’s mission, a spirit stirred towards the least-reached peoples of the world, and a heart that bursts with godly pride of that which he extraordinarily accomplishes through his ordinary, faithful and Spirit-filled people. Doug Balzer, Western Canadian District

tgymnkfrench.jpgThis book is filled with multiple stories of people – faithful to God’s call – whose obedience, courage, faith, and determination will nurture a desire in the reader to join God’s mission to the least-reached and marginalized people of all nations. Growing up in the Alliance Family, my own faith and call to serve was mentored by many of these godly servants as I heard parts of their missionary journey as they spoke in our church or visited our home. Their complete stories, captured in this book, continue to mentor and inspire me and I know they will do the same for all who read it. Joanne Beach, Justice and Compassion, CMA-Canada

These are some of the people and the stories that, in my youth, inspired me to walk more closely with Jesus and to give my life to taking His story to people who have yet to hear it. I’m grateful to Ron and Charlie for compiling this piece of our ‘family’ history, celebrating how God has used us to make Jesus known around the world. Lisa Miriam Rohrick, International Worker, Niger, West Africa

Going to the least reached places of the world has been something that has marked the C&MA not only in these latter years, but right from the beginning.  The stories in this book are about ordinary people who accepted God’s call to go to difficult places.  They said, yes and peoples who did not know the Good News, have been changed forever.  There are still difficult places that God is calling us, as the Canadian Alliance.  May this book cause us not only to celebrate the faithfulness of God as we obeyed and went, but to encourage us as we continue to say “yes, we will go.  Ruth-Anne Gilbertson, Director of Converge, Mobilization and Development of New International Workers, Global Ministries

It’s both encouraging and humbling to reflect on God’s wonderful work through C&MA missions over many years.  So it is a true joy that Ron Brown and Charles Cook have in this book traced the particular journey of Canadian Alliance churches and missionaries.  Believers in The C&MA of Canada should raise a hearty “hallelujah!,” celebrating what God does when those blessed to receive the Good News yield their lives on behalf of those who yet lack it.  We in the U.S. C&MA will add our loud “Amen!”  Tim Crouch, Vice-President, International Ministries, CMA-US

In A God You May Not Know, Ron and Charles provide a compelling collection of true life stories. This autobiographical material by people who have “been there, done that” is both informative and inspirational.  As Alliance missionaries, when they tell their stories they are telling our story.  They provide a window through which you glimpse our mission.  Mel Sylvester, President of CMA-Canada 1980-1992

This compendium is a powerful testimony of God’s way with the Canadian C&MA. I had the privilege of working with Canadians in the 1980-ies, in Africa, and ever since around the globe while giving leadership to the Alliance World Fellowship. The Canadian C&MA is one of the main players in our international family of like-minded churches. On behalf of your sister churches I express sincere gratitude for the prayers, the funds and especially the lives you have invested in the expansion of the global Church. I am excited that this book is dedicated to Dr. Arnold Cook, who deeply impacted me in his years as President of the AWF. His and Mary-Lou’s life and the lives of many other Canadians, keep inspiring us to dedicate ourselves to our Lord and Savior, Christ Jesus our King.  Arie Verduijn, President of the Alliance World Fellowship

This volume will be a rich resource for those who, like me, teach Missions and History of Missions to millennials.  Undergraduate students of today speak of feeling far removed from heroes of the faith who took the Gospel to distant lands in the early 20th Century.  Such a book is long overdue.  It effectively closes the gap between those early days of our C&MA pioneers in mission and the stories that today’s International Workers tell of what God is doing among the nations.   Our mission history in the C&MA is one to be deeply appreciated; it must be passed to the next generation. This book will be a valuable tool in connecting students with their roots, developing in them an appreciation for the sacrifice that was made in order that the seeds of the Gospel be planted and a great harvest reaped.  Miriam Charter, Ambrose University

Come on! How can you not be inspired by these people? The introductions and the stories tell of a God at work who is truly on a mission, and who will use ordinary Canadians for extraordinary purposes. And it begs the question:  if the baton has come to us, in our time – what will we do with His call? What will He do with us?  Mike Linnen, Seamless Link, CMA-Canada

A priceless treasure that informs us of facts but also the Spirit motivation and theology that has been the engine of Alliance missions for the past one and a third century. Hard to find resources are pulled together to give us a snapshot of what happened in major countries, but also the great flame of passion, fueled by the love of Christ and poured out by the Holy Spirit is both documented and sensed in all the stories. At the same time there is an honesty as difficulties and roadblocks are discussed. We can only hope that the next century of Canadian Alliance missionary work will yield even greater stories of the advance of Christ’s Kingdom.  Franklin Pyles, President, CMA-Canada 2000-2012

Facing the rapid changes in the new millennium, Gary McIntosh’s “Look Back Leap Forward, building your church on the values of the past,” challenges us to look back to our core values and use them as our basis to discover our vision for the future. What are our core values and purpose as a denomination? What is the C&MA DNA? This book helps answering these questions by telling various stories of who we are and what we have been doing all these years. They testify to our heritage and our values. I highly recommend this book to all our church family.  Aaron Tang, Executive Director, CCACA,  

As with the world of fashion the world of mission has often been carried away by fads and hollow innovations. Reflection based on a hundred years of mission history on four continents provides pause for current mission practitioners who may be tempted to take a rabbit-trail. This book is not just a random collection of mission cameos and mini autobiographic sketches. Read it to discover a higher panorama. Sift it carefully to discern the fundamental and enduring elements of effective mission and the kind of commitment that leads to lasting fruit.  Wally Albrecht, VP of Global Ministries

Why is the heartbeat to go to the hard places and unreached people groups deeply engrained in the DNA of the Alliance? Is God winning and how do we know? How is it possible for a mission field to grow to have even more followers than its sending country? What are the ingredients of a successful mission endeavor? If you read these amazing stories of God at work through the Christian & Missionary Alliance you will never be the same. It will answer the questions above; you will be overwhelmed by the passion and accomplishments of ordinary people; you will recognize that nothing of significance is ever accomplished without sacrifice; and it will move you to invest your life in the one thing that matters. Don’t miss the chance to let this change the trajectory of your engagement with God’s mission. This is the fodder of epic stories – it is God’s story.  Lorne Fredland, Former Chair, Board of Directors, CMA-Canada

You hold in your hands an adventure book, yet this is not the stuff of fairy tales, nor sensationalism, nor sentimentality. A God You May Not Know tells of the courage and conviction of men and women who pioneered uncharted territory to bring the message of the gospel to the ends of the earth. Their stories are part of our story and the hardships and glories they experienced spur us onward. May this compilation be an inspiring and stirring word to the Church for we are surrounded by a great cloud of witnesses in the C&MA in Canada.  Josie Vance, Missional Team Lead, Beulah Alliance Church, Edmonton

When I was unexpectedly presented with 72 typewritten pages of my grandfather’s memoirs I discovered that history is particularly compelling when it’s your own! I put that curled sheaf of papers down in the wee small hours, thrilled to know more  of my family’s history and experiences and feeling more connected to my own story and genesis. Who knew that the journey I can now take from central to northern Saskatchewan in 90 minutes took my ancestors five strenuous and challenging days by horse-drawn wagon? A God You May Not Know is filled with compelling stories of people and mission that are part of our collective history as the Christian and Missionary Alliance in Canada. In many cases, stories and situations I’ve been vaguely aware of are fleshed out in marvellous detail; in others, I’ve crossed paths with the authors themselves at distant points in the past. How encouraging to hear their voices again through their story in this great read. More than informative; this is a fascinating read! Errol Rempel, District   Superintendent, Canadian Pacific District, Vancouver






1 thought on “The God You May Not Know

  1. Ron, I have spent most of the evening reading your Writings from My Journey in Missions. Yesterday I googled Mel Sylvester, and today following that trail, I stumbled on A God You May Not Know that you and Charlie Cook put together. And from there to your website. I remember the year or two that you lived in Swift Current and have pictures of our two families getting together for an evening of games. Other than ordering the trilogy as per website, where could I expect to find copies of your books? I am in Regina and have been here for 29 years. My sister Justine and her husband David Foxall live in Calgary. David’s parents live in Three Hills.

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