FAO Quotables

"But being right, even morally right, isn't everything. It is also important to be competent, to be consistent, and to be knowledgeable. It's important for your soldiers and diplomats to speak the language of the people you want to influence. It's important to understand the ethnic and tribal divisions of the place you hope to assist."
-Anne Applebaum

Monday, April 13, 2020

Kruse's Keys: Read "The Insanity of God" To Change Your Perspective (Audible) (Somalia)

When many critics of Christianity think of missionaries they picture black-clad old-fashioned looking men and women proselytizing loudly in the streets--calling adamantly for repentance. If you fall into that category I challenge you to read this book--it will upend your perspective.

At one point Ripken's NGO was the ONLY ONE operating in Somalia--his team of 8 was feeding 50,000 refugees a day and running mobile health clinics around the country.  Without his efforts countless hundreds of thousands would have starved.  When no one else was there--he was--serving and loving the Somali people.    It was in his years there that he also learned the costs though of following his calling--he lost a son and hundreds of Somali friends who ended up believing in Jesus. He had this to say about religious persecution:

I’d never met a believer in persecution that wasn’t running for their life,” said Ripken. “In those years in Somalia, we had 150 followers of Jesus in the country. When we left, only four were left alive. They hunted them down like we would hunt animals in rural Kentucky. They killed four of my best friends in one day in Somalia."

But in a lifetime spent serving in high risk, war torn, countries he shares what he learned firsthand from persecuted Somalis, Chinese, Russians, and Ukrainians: persecution isn't something to be lamented:

The reason for persecution, then, is that people keep finding Jesus—and, then, they refuse to keep Him to themselves.”

These firsthand lessons are the result of what has turned into his life's mission--learning and sharing the stories of God at work throughout the globe--to date he and his wife have conducted more than 600 interviews in 72 countries.  

Regardless of your faith background, this book will challenge your perspective. 

*One of my Reading Around the Continent books--the full list is here.
See our 2020, 2019, 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015 and 2014 Reading Lists.

Key Quotes:
"Our hope is that believers around the world will get close enough to the heart of God that the first images that come to mind when we hear the word “Muslim” are not Somali pirates or suicide bombers or violent jihadists or even terrorists. When we hear the word “Muslim,” we need to see and think of each and every individual Muslim as a lost person who is loved by God. We need to see each Muslim as a person in need of God’s grace and forgiveness. We need to see each Muslim as someone for whom Christ died.”

“Don’t ever give up in freedom what we would never have given up in persecution!

“The reason for persecution, then, is that people keep finding Jesus—and, then, they refuse to keep Him to themselves.”

“one of the most accurate ways to detect and measure the activity of God is to note the amount of opposition that is present.”

“Don’t you steal my joy! I took great joy that I was suffering in my country, so that you could be free to witness in your country.”

“You can only grow in persecution what you go into persecution with.”

"Lost people have a greater right to access Jesus than I have a right to exert my religious freedom.”

“I had always assumed that persecution was abnormal, exceptional, unusual, out of the ordinary. In my mind, persecution was something to avoid. It was a problem, a setback, a barrier. I was captivated by the thought: what if persecution is the normal, expected situation for a believer? And what if the persecution is, in fact, soil in which faith can grow? What if persecution can be, in fact, good soil? I began to wonder about what that might mean for the church in America—and I began to wonder about what that might mean for the potential church in Somalia.”

Key References (For Further Study)


Baptism: The Point of No Return A story from Somalia

Nik Ripken: Lessons from the persecuted world for America


Nik Ripken Suggested Book List

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