At the end of last week, I had the privilege of visiting with Ken Smith. Ken was my pastor when I was in seminary years ago. His Spirit-filled preaching, the warm hospitality he and Floy always gave us, and Friday morning prayer times with him and a few other men were just some of the ways he ministered to me during those years. I learned so much from him then, and now that I am back in the Pittsburgh area he has again been a rich source of encouragement to me. So I have not only heard him teach, but experienced him practicing, the truth contained in the title of his new book With Him.
This short volume on this simple yet profound principal of discipleship is chocked full with insights into Jesus’ way of working with men. As the Scriptures tell us, our Lord chose his disciples to be “with him” (Mark 3:14). Ken demonstrates from Christ’s life that the most powerful way of developing another is to take him or her with you as you minister and live. He also develops how other key biblical figures practiced the with him principal, backs it up with the teaching of others, and shares wonderful anecdotes from his own lifetime of practice. The book is warmly written, and lays out clearly how this principal can be practiced (his article here on Gentle Reformation will give you a taste of the book).
In God’s providence, Ken is the pastor whom the Lord used to lead Rosaria Butterfield, author of The Secret Thoughts of an Unlikely Convert and Openness Unhindered, to himself. Rosaria says about the book:
Every word in this book makes me weep with joy for the God who made the man who went on a long journey to find me, to disciple me, to model for me how to walk ‘with him’; for the man who, at 90, went on to write this book. Do you want to know how a Bible-believing Christian can befriend a person like me? If so, then read this book.”
If you would like to order your own copy of the book, just click the image below. And, as you do, please pray for Ken and Floy. Having been married for over sixty years, Floy’s health has taken a recent downturn. Clearly Ken’s days are full of lovingly being with her during this time.