Dale's Personal Testimony
I grew up in a Christian home and went to Sunday school ever since I was small. I even joined a church and went to small study groups. God was there, but my life was so out of focus that I didn't see him. I was seeking meaning and purpose in life and thought that I was a Christian but still lacked something.
I used to get mad at people, have outbursts of anger, and be sarcastic. I kept going to a mainline denomination church, even through college. But I never remembered hearing the gospel.
After I graduated from college, I thought I could find what was missing in my life by serving people. So I joined the Peace Corps and went to teach high school biology in Kenya. While there, I realized, to my surprise, that I wasn't a Christian. What a bummer! I had intellectually believed in Christ, but never personally put my faith in Him. I did all the things that I saw Christians do, such as going to church, reading the Bible, and praying. So I thought that I was indeed a Christian.
In the Kenyan high school where I'd been teaching, I observed two types of Kenyan students: (a) the non-Christians and (b) the Christians, whose lives were in focus and who had a joy, a motivation, and a quality of life that I truly admired, yet didn't possess. The Christian students appeared to have an inner peace and direction in their lives, which I lacked.
I was living in inner turmoil. I knew what I wanted to do but wasn't sure I could trust Christ enough to give my whole life to Him.
One day a missionary friend and I talked as we drove a school principal’s wife to the hospital. Bob said that in Kenya he'd observed two kinds of Americans: (a) one kind was motivated by God and (b) one was motivated by humanitarian reasons. I was in agreement. That night I thought about it and knew immediately what my motivation was. Alas, I was the humanitarian!
A few days later, in October 1973, I went out into my backyard to pray because I was afraid that if I prayed in my house, the ceiling or roof might block my communication with Him. As I looked up at the bright cloudy-blue sky, I asked Jesus to come into my life and become my Lord and Savior, to forgive my sins, and to straighten out, lead, and organize my life the way He wanted. Immediately, I knew that I became a Christian since I had personally asked Jesus to come into my life.
That night, I slept more peacefully than I had ever had before. It was great!
Then my life began to change. God had given my life focus and shown me a clear direction for my life. I had a new desire to read my Bible and pray, not because these were what Christians do but because I wanted to learn more about God and be closer to Jesus.
My temper and outbursts of anger noticeably subsided. My life had begun to change. Today, I have peace, purpose, and direction in my life, almost as if God had given me a pair of prescription glasses to give needed focus to my life. Here's a verse that captures it all: “I had heard of thee by the hearing of the ear, but now my eye sees thee.” Job 42:5.
My Calling to Ministry
Motivated by a desire to help people in more than educational ways, I enrolled in nursing school after my return from Kenya. Before nursing school began, I prayed that God would give me a Christian roommate. My prayer was answered and He gave me a roommate from the Philippines who had been discipled by Cru in Manila. The first day we met, he invited me to a Campus Crusade-sponsored “College Life” meeting held that same night. I went, loved everything about it, and became actively involved with that ministry on our campus where I had been discipled.
During my two years at nursing school, I began to realize that in addition to helping people educationally and physically, I needed to also help them spiritually. I felt that God was encouraging me to "invest my life in a way that it would count the most for eternity."
This meant going into full-time Christian ministry where I would disciple and win to Christ men and women and boys and girls. In obedience to my Lord and Savior, I joined the staff of Cru in June, 1976. Later I felt the Lord directing my family and me to return to Kenya and minister there in spiritual ways by teaching Kenyan nationals who were studying at the Nairobi International School of Theology. This was the fulfillment of a calling I had had: to return to the place of my spiritual birth and minister to many, spiritually.
Warmly in Christ,