Book compares struggles of pastor with Job
    September 9 2014 by Micheal Pardue, Book Review

    Ron Dunn: His Life and Mission by Ron Owens (B&H Publishers, June 2013)

    It seems fitting there is a biography that connects a pastor’s life with that of the Old Testament figure Job. Job was a man of sorrows who, though godly, endured great trials. The pastorate, possibly the loneliest of professions, is a calling to godly living, trials and sorrow. Ron Dunn’s life was one of godly living and great sorrow. This makes a biography about his life both interesting and fitting.
     
    Coming into ministry after Dunn had already departed this life, I was unaware of his ministry and influence.
     
    However, it does not take many pages into Ron Owens’ biography on the 20th century preacher to see why he was a much beloved pastor, evangelist, father, husband and friend.
     
    Dunn came from humble beginnings and maintained that humility even as he became a widely respected minister.
     
    To capture who he was, Owens takes a unique approach. He traces the entirety of Dunn’s ministry through personal stories from those closest to him. We are given intimate glances into his pastoral work and personal struggles.
     
    Those who knew him best recount for us the highs and lows of Dunn’s decades in ministry.
     
    The reader is able to connect the personal life of Dunn with his preaching ministry. The author has gathered a wonderful selection of sermons preached at critical junctures of Dunn’s ministry.
     
    We can see within his pulpit ministry his wrestling with the joy and grief that accompanied him. Dunn wrestled with the suicide of his son and his own depression.
     
    We are given a unique glimpse at how his struggles effected his ministry and how he was comforted by the power of Christ’s work in his life.
     
    The author provides testimony after testimony from the people who had been his deacons, Sunday School teachers and assistants.
     
    They provide a wonderful testimony of a man who had devoted himself deeply to the work of the ministry and to proclaiming the gospel of Jesus Christ.
     
    This book tells a great testimony of how God can use pastors who open themselves to the direction of the heavenly Father.
     
    Ron Dunn was not special, at least in any sense that should cause him to stand out from the others around him.
     
    However, he remained ever-dedicated to carrying out the work God called him to. Though there were clearly times when it seemed the world was crashing down, Ron Dunn stayed the course and finished the race Christ set before him.
     
    The most powerful testimony in the entire biography is of Dunn’s last sermon. It was not preached in some high and lofty First Baptist Church of Somewhere Special or in front of thousands of people. He had done both. His last sermon was preached from a bed, with only his wife in attendance.
     
    He had one final sermon to complete his series from Paul’s letter to the Philippian church. So the night before he died, he preached his last sermon to his wife as she sat beside his hospital bed.
     
    My personal admonition to pastors is: do not live to earn a biography that bears your name when you leave this world. Live in such a way that if someone wrote about you, it will record that even your departure from this life continued to bring glory to your Creator.
     
    (EDITOR’S NOTE – Micheal Pardue is pastor of First Baptist Icard, Connelly Springs.) 

    9/9/2014 10:29:57 AM by Micheal Pardue, Book Review | with 0 comments
    Filed under: book review, Ron Dunn




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