The journey toward cross-cultural ministry can feel overwhelming. But don’t panic! A wealth of resources is available to answer questions and offer guidance.
Some of the books below are titles we recommend that our workers read before they leave for the field. Some are books that our workers have found particularly helpful. Several were written by our workers from their own experiences.
The Purity Principle: God’s Safeguards for Life’s Dangerous Trails by Randy Alcorn (Multnomah, 2003)
When Helping Hurts: How to Alleviate Poverty Without Hurting the Poor … and Yourself by Steve Corbett and Brian Fikkert (Moody Publishers, 2014)
Just Do Something: A Liberating Approach to Finding God’s Will by Kevin DeYoung (Moody Publishers, 2014)
Screams in the Desert: Hope and Humor for Women in Cross-Cultural Ministry by Sue Eenigenburg (William Carey Library, 2007)
Cross-Cultural Servanthood: Serving the World in Christlike Humility by Duane Elmer (IVP Books, 2006)
On Being a Missionary (Revised Edition) by Thomas Hale and Gene Daniels (William Carey Library, 2014)
Single Mission edited by Dr. Debbie Hawker and Tim Herbert (Condeopress.com, 2013)
Survival Kit for Overseas Living: For Americans Planning to Live and Work Abroad by Robert L. Kohls (Nicholas Brealey, 2011)
Tentmaking: The Life and Work of Business as Missions by Patrick Lai (Authentic Media, 2005)
The Spiritual Survival Handbook for Cross-Cultural Workers by Dr. Robert S. Miller (BottomLine Media, 2011)
Why God Calls Us to Dangerous Places by Kate McCord (Moody Publishers, 2015)
Let the Nations Be Glad: The Supremacy of God in Missions by John Piper (Baker Academic, 2010)
The Insanity of God: A True Story of Faith Resurrected by Nik Ripken (B&H Publishing Group, 2013)
A Vision of the Possible: Pioneer Church Planting in Teams by Daniel Sinclair (IVP Books, 2006)
Should I Get Married? (Revised Edition) by M. Blain Smith (IVP Books 2000)
From Jerusalem to Irian Jaya: A Biographical History of Christian Missions (Second Edition) by Ruth A. Tucker (Zondervan, 2011)
EDIFIED!: 365 Devotionals to Stimulate Personal Worship and Spark Inner Transformation by S.M. Wibberley (EdifyingServices Press, 2013)
When People are Big and God is Small by Edward T. Welch (P & R Publishing, 1997)
If you feel called to serve among a particular people group, it can also be helpful to read books specifically focused on that group’s culture and religion. (Our booklets on Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism and refugees are great places to start!)
In addition to instructional books, be inspired by biographies of faithful men and women who have gone ahead of you to give their lives so that others will know Jesus. Learn the stories of Gladys Aylward, George Mueller, Lottie Moon and Mary Slessor. Journey with David Brainerd, Hudson Taylor and John G. Patton. Experience grief and loss as you read about Darlene Deibler Rose, Elisabeth Elliot, John and Betty Stam and Adoniram and Ann Judson. Study perseverance alongside Amy Carmichael and William Carey.
Immerse yourself in the stories of God moving throughout the world through His people among those that don’t know Him. Then, consider how He is moving you to reach least-reached people who don’t yet worship Him!