Sunday, February 11, 2007

Mega-Excerpts: "Awaking the Giant" by Ryan Shaw


I think that is what I will call posts like this from now on. I started with Tony Campolo's book--thanks for your tremendous feedback--and thought this practice of posting book-excerpts-worth-reading is worth continuing here.

Raise your hand if you are *very* busy. How about too busy to read?

Trick question...

...The busier you are, the more you need to read good books. Otherwise you are liable to spin your wheels (faster) and waste your life (more). And how will your in-need-of-transformation mind be able to compete with the mind-conforming media you are already sucking in (ie, billboards, chats, newspapers, TV, movies, magazines, etc) otherwise? Romans 12:1-2.

So I hope these "mega excerpts" serve, in some small way, to edify you; and keep you thinking.

Disclaimer: I don't necessarily agree with all of these excerpts. I just think they are worth reading and thinking about.

The point: we need to keep changing. In a good direction. Otherwise we're toast.

George has been giving me a book a week to read/evaluate recently, so here (this post and the next) are two more batches of "mega-excerpts." Enjoy!


Mega-Excerpts from “Waking the Giant” by Ryan Shaw; Compiled by Nigel Barham February 3, 2007

(All text is quotes unless surrounded by brackets.)

[Quotes Jim Elliott: “God, I pray that you would light these idle sticks of my life and may I burn up for you. Consume my life, my God, for it is yours! I seek not a long life but a full one, like you, Lord Jesus!” – p. 12]

From 1974 to 2004, the number of those around the world who were out of reach of the gospel message have been reduced from one-half to one-third of the global population.” – p.31

It is predicted that this year 160,000 believers worldwide will be martyred for their faith. – p. 42

[Young people in the Bible used of God: Daniel, Mary, Jeremiah (called to be a prophet when 20 years old), Timothy, David, Stephen. – p. 50-51. Historical examples: John Calvin (wrote The Institutes of the Christian Religion at 26, a year after being saved), George Whitefield (started preaching at 21 and soon surpassed Wesley), Dwight L. Moody (planted a church in a tavern in Chicago as a young man), Catherine Booth (founded the Salvation Army with husband William; had read the Bible eight times by age 12), Charles Spurgeon (the most popular preacher in London by age 21), Hudson Taylor (first sailed to China in 1853 at age 21). – p. 52]

In 1904 a revival broke out in Wales. The little nation was brought to its knees by an awareness of the literal presence of God everywhere – in shops, factories, mines, taverns, music halls, trains, and schools. Revival meetings were marked by an intense awe that settled over those who gathered. … It wasn’t only believers who experienced the reality of God, rather, hundreds of thousands found faith in Jesus during the two years of uninterrupted power.” – p. 56

[Azusa Street revival in 1906. Haystack prayer meeting 1806. – p. 58. The Mount Hermon Conference: “Beginning on July 6, 1886, two hundred and fifty-one students from eighty-six colleges came together to sit under the teaching of [Dwight L.] Moody for one month. … Two weeks went by without any public mention of global mission during any of the Mt. Sermon sessions.” Then Dr. A.T. Pierson preached a message: ‘All should go, and go to all’. … “As the final two weeks went on, more of the messages surrounded the call to take the gospel to the ends of the earth. By the end of the conference, one hundred people had signed the Princeton Covenant committing themselves, ‘God permitting, to become foreign missionaries.’”]

[Principles for today: Perseverance pays off, peer-on-peer influence, the place of faith, it doesn’t take many. Also: don’t waste your college years, momentum is powerful. – p. 60-61.]

[IVCF did not have a focus on global mission until just before the first Urbana conference, which was held at the University of Toronto from December 27, 1946 to January 1, 1947. There were 575 students in facilities for 500. The next Urbana took place in 1948 at the University of Illinois in Urbana, Illinois. There were 1,300 students in attendance. – p. 69]

[Campus Crusade for Christ: founded by Bill Bright in 1951. OM: 1957+. YWAM: founded in 1960 by Lauren Cunningham. – p.70.]

[Quotes Francis Xavier: “Tell the students to give up their small ambitions and come eastward to preach the gospel of Christ.” – p. 74]

[More American teenagers going on short-term mission trips than ever. But “the number of new long-term workers, from the emerging generation, continues to dwindle!” – p.75]

Although nearly half of young adults return from a short-term trip with an initial excitement about possible long-term involvement, very few ever make it overseas. ‘I’d guess that between ten and twenty percent consider long-term commitment, but none from my group are now overseas,’ said a campus ministry leader in California. One-third of students never give a thought to future long-term involvement after a short-term trip. A campus ministry leader in New York admitted, ‘None of my students have come back and considered vocational missions.’ – p. 76

The original intent of the first short-term trips in the 1960s was for potential long-term workers to survey the place in the world that they sensed God [was] calling them to go as laborers. By contrast, as a denominational representative in California stated, ‘Short-term trips these days appear to highlight having a ‘spiritual experience’ rather than producing prepared laborers for the global harvest.’ – p. 76

Students may come home from a summer or spring break trip and check ‘missions’ off their spiritual checklist of things to do – they have gone on a summer or spring break trip to serve Jesus and have completed their ‘missions’ responsibility. Now they can finish college, get a job, and do their own thing, all because they participated in a two-week summer mission trip. – p. 76

Without a radical shift in focus and a significant increase in the long-term challenge presented to the emerging generation, the completion of the Great Commission in our day is an elusive dream. – p. 77

[Quoting Deitrich Bonhoeffer: “The cross is not the terrible end to an otherwise God-fearing and happy life, but it meets us at the beginning of our communion with Christ. When Christ calls a man, he bids him come and die.” – p. 82]

William Carey believed that God intended every believer to play a role in the cross-cultural mission of the Church. His reading of Scripture convinced him that all were called to go unless God clearly led them to stay. – p. 89

Members of the global Church earn an annual 12,300 billion U.S. dollars. 1.73% of this total income or 213 billion US dollars is given by these church members for Christian causes. Of this amount only 5.4% (11.4 billion U.S. dollars) of total giving among the entire global Church goes toward cross-cultural outreach (foreign mission activities) and church planting. Of this amount, only one percent goes to those working in forgotten areas where there is no established witness for Jesus. – p. 93

It is alarming to recognize how few believers actually tithe at least ten percent of their income to God. In Malachi 3:8-10 God rebukes Israel by declaring, “Will a man rob God? Yet you rob me? But you ask ‘How do we rob you?’ ‘In tithes and offerings. You are under a curse – the whole nation of you – because you are robbing me. Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this,’ says the Lord Almighty.” – p. 94

The days of boring prayer meetings must come to an end. Prayer meetings should be the most well-attended, vital, and exciting of all of our meetings. – p. 97

[Quotes Ludwig von Zinzendorf: “I have but one passion – it is He, it is He alone. The world is the field and the field is the world; and henceforth that country shall be my home where I can be most used in winning souls for Christ.” – p. 116]

[Believes “the top three theological barriers to the emerging generation being activated into global mission today” are sacrifice, “the question of the sovereignty of God versus human responsibility” and “the problem of universalism and the reality of hell.” – p. 139]

[Believes the following are the major factors holding the emerging generation back practically: “(1) parental influence, (2) problem of funds/faith, (3) the “American” dream, (4) they don’t see themselves as message bearers, and (5) a sense of inadequacy.” – p. 143]

In Asian-American families, parents are especially resistant to the idea of their children becoming long-term message bearers. [Ditto for Sub-Saharan Africans.] – p. 143

[Quotes Robertson McQuilkin who, “in his book The Great Omission lists five reasons why global mission suffers – (1) we don’t care that much, (2) we don’t see very well, (3) we think there must be some other way, (4) our prayer is peripheral, and (5) someone isn’t listening.” – p. 147]

[Negative aspects of the emerging generation: “pluralism and the fear of imposing our faith,” “materialism and the consumer mentality,” and “character issues: a generation killer.” – p. 152-153.]

There are a multitude of areas that need to be openly discussed. One particularly powerful area of sin in our day is the use of internet pornography. Some leaders believe the reason behind the lack of male spiritual leadership rising among the emerging generation is shame and guilt over their use of pornography. A campus leader in California said with tears in his eyes, “We’re losing a whole generation of male leaders to this thing. They won’t step up because they feel unworthy, yet they love God dearly.” – p. 154

Previous studies have shown that the emerging generation is the most Biblically illiterate generation yet. – p. 154

[Quotes Hudson Taylor: “I have found that there are three stages in every work of God; first it is impossible, then it is difficult, then it is done!” – p. 156]

[Quotes John Piper: “All of history is moving towards one great goal, the white-hot worship of God and His son among all the peoples of the earth. Mission is not the goal. It is the means. And for that reason it is the second greatest activity in the world.” – p. 164]

[Quotes John Stott: “His authority on earth allows us to dare to go to all the nations. His authority in Heaven gives us our only hope of success. And his presence with us leaves us no other choice.” – p. 166]

History shows that when God is ready to do something drastic, He tends to use the scatter principle. God loves to scatter people His people from all kinds of backgrounds and mix them up in new surroundings in order to see the expansion of His Kingdom. You cannot be scattered, however, by choosing to remain at home. Oftentimes in history this has been done through persecution (Acts 8:4). – p. 169

Winkie Pratney says about this scatter principle, “The gospel has always made greatest impact by an alien to a nation. A Jew brought it to Rome; a Roman took it to France; a Frenchman to Scandinavia; a Scandinavian to Scotland. A Scotsman took it to Ireland. The English-men, John Wesley and Whitfield took revival fire to America.” – p. 170

Strangers tend to gain a listening ear more readily than locals. The authority of a local is often ignored, as Jesus was rejected in his hometown. – p. 170

[Cross-cultural “ministries to consider”: refugees, at-risk children, justice issues, medical, ESL, tentmaking, teaching the Bible, micro-enterprise, water purification, social work, business, literature and Bible distribution, teaching in universities (often only requires a Bachelor’s degree), Bible translation, study, literacy, creative arts. – p. 172-175]

[Quotes Oswald J. Smith: “No one has the right to hear the gospel twice, while there remains someone who has not heard it once.” – p. 176]

[How to cultivate a vision for the forgotten: prayer calendar, adopt a forgotten-people group, books, reach out to international students, pray through the world news in the paper, learn a forgotten-people-group language, research online, pray for the countries on the tags on your clothes. – p. 179]

Many internationals spend their entire time at a western university without ever being invited to someone’s home. – p. 178

Quotes others (pages 190-192):

“I have but one candle of life to burn, and I would rather burn it out in a land filed with darkness than in a land flooded with light.” – John Keith Falconer

“The Bible is not the basis of missions; missions is the basis of the Bible.” – Ralph Winter

“I used to think that prayer should have the first place and teaching the second. I now feel it would be truer to give prayer the first, second and third places and teaching the fourth.” – James O. Fraser

“Forbid that we should ever consider the holding of a commission from the King of Kings a sacrifice, so long as other men esteem the service of an earthly government as an honor. I am a missionary, heart and soul. God Himself had an only Son, and He was a missionary and a physician. A poor, poor imitation I am, or wish to be, but in this service I hope to live. In it I wish to die. I still prefer poverty and mission service to riches and ease. This is my choice!” – David Livingstone

“He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose.” – Jim Elliot

“Have you noticed how much praying for revival has been going on of late – and how little revival has resulted? I believe the problem is that we have been trying to substitute praying for obeying, and it simply will not work. To pray for revival while ignoring the plain precept laid down in Scripture is to waste a lot of words and get nothing for our trouble. Prayer will become effective when we stop using it as a substitute for obedience.” – A.W. Tozer

[Web Resources:,,,,,,,,,,, – p 205]

ar TORONTO, CANADA | 2023+



27 Sat (1) 11am Commencement speaker at R. University, (2) ~3pm+ time w/ V/AR+
29 Mon (1) 9:30am VT prayer, (2) 3pm mtg DerCh - Mississauga
30 Tue (1) 10am ph call (AA), (2) 5:30pm video mtg (IsTan), (3) 8pm neighbourhood prayer mtg

1 Thu (1) 11:30am Zoom mtg (LM), (2) 4pm mtg (VS,KBr)
2 Fri (1) 10:30am ph call (PVDW; SL w/ boys; ~J working)
3 Sat SL w/ boys and MG
5 Mon (1) 9:30am VT prayer mtg, (2) 2pm Europe call, (3) 5pm mtg/walk (YM)
6 Tue (1) 11:30am lunch (GD) - St. Jacobs, (2) 4pm mtg (AF) - Cambridge, (3) 7:30pm worship night
9 Fri ~J's b'day
10 Sat North Bay trip
13 Tue 11am mtg (DAy) (~J school trip w/ ~Co | text BD)
14 Wed 9:30am time w/ BD
15 Thu 4:30pm video mtg (Paul T.)
16 Fri (1) 9am video med appt, (2) 15-km run (Prayer Journey "warm-up")
17 Sat Prayer Journey (my own: 50km GTA bike-ride; Jessie's: 5KM) and speaking at GTA after-party
23-25 Fri-Sat poss. SL
26 Mon 2pm Europe monthly call
29 ... July 7 Thu-Fri poss. holiday in Arkansas

... 7 Thu-Fri poss. holiday in Arkansas
~8-17 SA+ in Toronto; P/H Bell likely visiting too
15 Sat aft+ baptism (Saj; NaB may be coming)
17-21 Mon-Fri Kids Kapers camp
24 Mon 2:45pm med. appt
26 Wed (1) 11am video mtg (SM), (2) 3pm Zoom mtg (SMa,SB), (3) 7pm ~J speaking at Greenhouse/Zoe - UofT downtown
27 Thu 10am video MVT board mtg
31 Mon 3:05pm med. appt
July/Aug CCWM board mtg / AGM

2 Wed 11am video mtg (SM+)
6-12 Sun-Fri Cottage w/ O/DN+ and UB/AC - Windermere; plus Muskoka
19 Sat poss. ~J fam beach day - Brighton area
25-29 Fri-Tue MoveIn staff retreat - southern Ontario

Sep 21 Thu - MVT board mtg
Sep 23 Sat poss. date of GV memorial
Sep 24 Sun ~Ch's b'day
Sep ~26-28 Poss. time in Lushnjë, Albania
Sep 29 - Oct 6 MoveIn Europe Conference+ - Durrës, Albania
Oct 21 Sat poss./unlikely date of GV memorial
Oct 21-27 Dollar-a-Day week
Early Nov Poss. fundraising event - Niagara
Nov-Jan Poss. time in India - Goa; Philippines - Manila+; Indonesia - Jakarta/Bali; LA/San Diego