In 2005 I began a manuscript with Loren Cunningham, my uncle, to tell the story and keys behind his journeys to every nation on earth, entitled, No Boundaries.
The year before, my wife, Quezia, and I had bought a humble mobile home and our daughter had been born. Amid these two major life changes, we made two risky decisions.
First my wife and I dedicated our daughter to God together with Uncle Loren and the rest of our family. We solemnly promised her to God’s plans. It’s often just a rite people do without considering it. But no one should promise this half-heartedly. Just recently we learned our now 19 year-old daughter has committed to stay on in New Zealand to volunteer there for 6 months and possibly more.
History doesn’t repeat exactly, but it can echo. My wife’s prayers as a teen led her from her family in Brazil to the US. They faced years apart as she learned a new language and grew into a new homeland. Both the promises and risks are real.
The second great risk was to begin this book. My daughter still an infant, I committed to leave home for many months to write this book. We prayed and decided it was “a once in a lifetime sacrifice for a once in a lifetime opportunity.” We would part at such a tender time. It’s tiny compared to military families’ sacrifices. But risking my child’s heartbreak was grave. Many have wrecked families and marriages for ambition. Was this different? Or was I no better?
The months of research, interviews, drafts and endless edits produced a manuscript that felt profound and almost complete. Ideas aplenty, we tried different approaches to wrap up the final chapter. But it wasn’t right and I knew it.
Calling back and forth, my little girl could just talk enough to say, “Daddy, I love you! I miss you. Bye!” She’d say it and then pass the phone…toddle around and get the phone to say it again and again. When I came back I realized that what could have hurt us, had forged a deep bond with my daughter.
Almost 18 years passed. Our babies are grown. Over the years, Loren and I revisited possible endings for the book several times. The unfinished book weighed on me.
News came. Uncle Loren’s diagnosis of lung cancer shook us all. Doctors only gave him weeks. Preparations began and the word went out. But by the prayers of so many family and friends, the cancer didn’t progress normally. His pain went away for a time. The weeks stretched to months in a remarkable period where Uncle Loren rallied to speak about radical new ideas. In his battles with cancer he felt God give him a call he was to share, to see the Bible translated into every mother tongue “on earth as it is in heaven.”
The final chapter was finally clear. We boiled down his bold new speeches and interviews into a manifesto for the finale of No Boundaries. On reading the final draft, Uncle Loren said, “Oh my, powerful” and then laughed, “Go to press! Hurry up! What are you doing here?”
My wife teared up as I told her, “It’s finally finished.”
“After all this time!” Quezia said, wiping away tears.
In his last days, Loren’s once powerful voice could only whisper his additions and corrections to the book. He gave those fleeting moments to give us No Boundaries.
Time is a scarce treasure–and this book’s time has finally come! No Boundaries is edited and now being printed with YWAM Publishing. Sign up here to get a free sample chapter or get the full book when it’s out in November!