Thank you for visiting the blog for THE MISSIONARY, the exciting new novel from Moody Publishers. Authors William Carmichael and David Lambert contribute to this blog often. Readers are encouraged to view and/or leave comments about the book.
Thanks for visiting!
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Yesterday David Eller was an American missionary serving the poor in Venezuela. Today he is an international fugitive.
David Eller rescues impoverished children in Caracas, Venezuela, with his wife, Christie. But for David, that isn’t enough. The supply of homeless children is endless because of the massive poverty and the oppressive policies of the Venezuelan government.
When the CIA gives David an opportunity to do something more—to heal the disease rather than working on the symptoms—he decides to go for it. But little by little, he falls into an unimaginable nightmare of espionage, ending in a desperate, life-or-death gamble to flee the country with his wife and son.
Was he wrong to resort to political solutions?
And was it really the CIA that asked him to get involved?
View more at www.missionarynovel.com
DISCUSSION QUESTIONS for THE MISSIONARY
- Which character in the book did you identify with or “like” the most? Did you like the way the story ended for that character? If not, what would you change?
- Clearly, David Eller struggled with the best way to fulfill what he felt was God-given desire—his calling, in fact—to help the homeless. Regardless of how David’s story turned out: What do you think of the way he chose to try to help? What other options could he have considered besides getting involved with Carlos Edwards and simply continuing with Hope Village?
- When is it justified for Christians to immerse themselves in politics? Are there times when it is wrong? Such as?
- Do you think it’s possible to “legislate” righteousness and morality?
- Hope Village seems to operate as much to meet the physical and social and emotional needs of the orphans of Caracas as to meet their spiritual needs. Do you consider that a biblically defensible approach? What passages of Scripture might suggest that it is?
- “What we do at Hope Village is like spitting in the ocean,” David lamented at the end of chapter 4. Do you agree? Do you see why he was tempted to risk much in order to do more?
- We know that bad things happen to good people, to innocent people. Is it ever the will of God for us to suffer? What do you think of Cecil’s arguments in chapter 7 that suffering children are everywhere and will continue to be, and that our best response is to simply love and help the ones where we are?
- What is your answer to those who say that if God was a god of love, there would be no starving children in the world, no suffering?
- What does it mean to do the Lord’s work in the Lord’s way?
- In chapter 9, David Eller thought he was listening to God when he decided to get involved in the coup. He also felt God had given him a scripture verse as confirmation. Have you ever used a method similar to the one David uses here to try to find God’s will? Do you think that David actually experienced God’s guidance in this scene—or did he miss it? How do you find the will of God and hear God’s voice in your own life?
- What issues regarding communication and honesty in marriage do you see acted out in this book? Were there scenes in which the words or actions of either Christie or David caused you concerns or uneasiness—where you wanted to see them choose another way?
- The book ends with Christie reunited with David. What should her response be from this point on? Should she trust David ever again? Should she put conditions on her forgiveness? If you were in her shoes, how would you respond?
- One of the things David risked in getting involved with Carlos Edwards’s plot was his ability to continue to minister to the homeless children of Caracas, and that was a gamble he lost. Can you think of any other Christian figures who, in choosing to become heavily involved in attempting political solutions, have risked damaging their Christian ministries?
- As shown in chapter 9, many influences factored into David’s decision, including his sense of wanting to please his father and do something significant like his older brother. How do our childhood experiences, our parents, and our siblings influence our decisions and our responses to life? Have you ever faced a moment of complex sorting of conflicting influences, as David did here?