A Year of Being Kind blog – Friday, May 23, 2014
Diplomat for God (Feature Friday!)
My friend Dan? Great guy! My friend Dan? Generous, kind, ready to be of service. My friend Dan? Always ready to lend a hand or lend an ear.
And—my friend Dan? Associate Director of Presbyterian Frontier Fellowship for the Midwest United States. Pretty long title for a heckuva guy. He fills the shoes of that big title, to be sure. He started out studying to be in the diplomatic service in school. He was fascinated by this subject, for years. (Even as a child, he remembers.) But his life took a different turn, and he started his career in the business world. Until—God brought Dan to a realization: “similar to the apostle Matthew, in that, hearing the Good News, I got up from my agricultural trading desk . . . and decided to follow Jesus wherever He may lead me. The ride has been incredible ever since.”
Doing cross-cultural work immediately upon going to Costa Rica, Dan fell in love with mission work. Long story short, he attended seminary, became ordained in the Presbyterian Church (USA), and started working as an associate pastor in the Chicago suburbs. With a focus on mission in his life and ministry, he helped people from this area experience cross-cultural missions.
After accepting a position with Presbyterian Frontier Fellowship in 1996, he has since been focused on helping connect people. Connecting people from the Midwest area of the United States with small groups of believers and newly-planted churches—in frontier areas, all around the world. These are small groups looking for a connection! And Dan is a marvelous connector. A diplomat for God. On behalf of the Gospel, he introduces fellow believers in Christ from halfway around the world to each other. For support, for friendship, for fellowship.
One area where Dan finds open doors is in making bridges. For a number of years, he has been leading trips to Egypt (supporting the Presbytery of Egypt). He has grown, too, in his support for Christian communities within the Arabic-speaking world. But through this work in the Middle East, he also has been drawn to building bridges to Islam and to Muslims in the Chicago area. Dan says, “In fact, I have recently started an Islam study group for the northern suburbs of Chicago. . . . I care deeply that the Muslim world gain access to the Good News of Jesus Christ through these kinds of dialogues and relationships.”
What a reconciling work, what an opportunity for service. Overcoming fears, anxieties, and separation in a number of areas. Building bridges. Being a diplomat for God. Yes, that’s my friend Dan!
Like what you read? Disagree? Share your thoughts with your loved ones and continue the conversation.