I was tempted to cut it down…

By John Maust, MAI President

About 15 years ago I gave my wife, Elsa, a pink dogwood tree for Mother’s Day. The kids and I planted the tiny tree in the front yard and waited impatiently for gorgeous flowers to bloom.

One year passed, then two, then three. Still no flowers. We wondered if the spindly little dogwood would ever grow and blossom. A few times I was tempted to cut it down.

But one spring we saw some blossoms, and more in the springs after that. As time passed, the trunk thickened, branches expanded, and an ever-widening array of pink petals spread among the leaves. Truly our pink dogwood was coming into its own.

MAI ministry is a bit like planting a tree. We come alongside a man or woman with gifting for Christian writing or publishing.  We water and nourish that talent through training, encouragement and prayer. Sometimes we wonder if, or when, all that hard work will blossom into a finished book or established publishing ministry.

Then that writer’s book get published, that publisher makes real progress toward growth,  that trainee becomes a trainer of other writers and publishers. And we remember that it takes time for a growing Christian communicator to take root and flourish.

Lawrence Darmani was awarded MAI’s Lifetime Trainer Award at LittWorld 2012. Photo by Eric Gitonga Photography, Kenya.

I think of Keila, whom we met as a teenager 25 years ago and who now is a prolific author and MAI Board member.  There’s Joanna, who attended LittWorld in the 1990s and went on to found a nationally recognized ministry to widows and orphans, and Lawrence, who went from raw university student to prolific author and founder of a thriving publishing ministry  in Ghana (photo at left). I could tell you about others.

Our ministry is not about one-off workshops or instant results. With your prayerful support, we are making a long-term investment in gifted men and women around the world. We believe that many will one day bear fruit with published works that transform lives for eternity.

>>Help us satisfy global hunger for the written word.

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