Sunday, April 29, 2012

Spitfire Disciple

Dallas and the Spitfire:  An Old Car, an Ex-Con, and an Unlikely Friendship

by Dallas Jahncke and Ted Kluck

At first glance one would scratch his/her head and wonder what this book is all about.  After skimming through the introduction we discover that this is an account of a life-changing friendship between two young men with backgrounds that are poles apart.

Ted Kluck, a freelance writer from Lansing, Michigan, befriends a young ex-con and cocaine addict, Dallas Jahncke.  Kluck is a thirty-four year old husband and father with a Reformed theological position who loves boxing and rock music.  After meeting Dallas, who found help at a rescue mission in Lansing, Ted begins to forge a friendship that willl be at the same time challenging, gut-wrenching and rewarding.

This book journals a new style of discipleship, not your typical "12 Steps to Mentoring a Man for Christ" format, but one where two guys decide to get down and dirty and restore an old Triumph Spitfire.  They meet regularly in Ted's garage where the frustrations of rebuilding a British import and a broken man combine to cause the more mature believer to wonder if he's making any headway.

Dallas enrolls in a fundamentalist Bible college and finds that some of his "not-acceptable", old habits put him in hot water.  The freedom he has discovered in Christ and the legalism he encounters  at the college cause him to begin a roller coaster Christian ride...filled with ups and downs.

Throughout the process Ted sees enough progress in Dallas that he continues on in spite of the constant battles with booze, babes and bad decisions.

I found it hard to put the book down and realized that fixing up an old car between sips of coffee and loud music is a form of discipleship that really works. 

If the church employed more of this mode of disciple making I'm sure we'd see a greater influx of new believers who begin the lifelong journey of "being conformed to the image of Christ."

An engaging read!  Pick up a copy!

David W. Fisher

This book has been provided courtesy of Bethany House Publishers, a division of Baker Publishing Group, and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc. Available at your favourite bookseller from Bethany House Publishers".

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