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Dallas and the Spitfire: An Old Car, an Ex-Con, and an Unlikely Friendship Paperback – April 1, 2012
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From the Back Cover
Discipleship Isn't a Program, It's a Relationship
Ted is a thirty-four-year-old father of two who's been going to church his whole life. Dallas is a twenty-one-year-old former cocaine addict with a prison record. When they agree to meet regularly for "discipleship," they know that chatting once a week in a coffee shop just won't cut it. Restoring an old Triumph Spitfire is more their style.
This is not "12 Steps to Mentoring a Man for Christ" or "The Blockhead's Guide to Discipleship." This is real life. It's the true story of a guy a lot like you and another guy nothing at all like you. It shows how real men can be friends with one another and get closer to Jesus. It isn't easy. It isn't a checklist. If you have a rigid system in place, you're doing it wrong. It's all about living life for others.
"The book is less about a car than about the lasting friendship that forms between the men. Despite a few flaws, the authors have put together a triumph." --Publishers Weekly
"At the risk of embarrassing these nitty-gritty guys, this is ultimately a story about love--learning to love God when life is hard and to love each other as brothers. I could hardly put the book down, and am very happy to recommend it."
--Justin Taylor; blogger, "Between Two Worlds"; managing editor, The ESV Study Bible
"If you are serious about making disciples who make disciples who make disciples, I recommend this book highly."
--Steve Sonderman, associate pastor Men's Ministry Elmbrook Church, founder No Regrets Men's Ministry
"With characteristic wit, humor and insight, Ted Kluck tells a profoundly moving story of faith and discipleship. It may be a book about an unusual friendship and a pretty cool car but [it's] ultimately a poignant and welcome reminder of the power of the gospel to change hearts and lives." Tim Ellsworth, author God and in the Whirlwind and coauthor, Pujols: More Than the Game
"A great read and one to give the men in your life...the story of their friendship made for compelling and even compulsive reading." --Amy Boucher Pye, Woman Alive Book Club (U.K.)
About the Author
Ted Kluck is an award-winning author and freelance writer. He has written seven books and his work has appeared in such places as ESPN the Magazine and Christianity Today. He's also the author of the ebook Jeremy Lin: Faith, Joy, and Basketball. His first book won a Christianity Today Book of the Year award. Ted lives in Grand Ledge, Michigan, with his wife and two sons.
Dallas Jahncke is 21 years old, has attempted suicide three times, and has been in jail twice, but is today sober, productive, and attending Bible college. He is a member of University Reformed Church in East Lansing, Michigan.
Top customer reviews
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In an age where people have to deal with Christian non-fiction authors who are (1) poor writers or (2) great writers with poor content, Ted Kluck does the impossible time and time again. He gives us a real life story that is heart wrenching, that's warming and that's comedic gold. It's a story of a ex-con who was delivered from a waking nightmare by the grace of God. Its a story of a suburban father trying to escape the meaningless blase blah of the American Dream. These two meet together to foster growth in Christ, hold each other accountable and escape the clutches of the false dreams that continually seek to lure them in. At times these two get into comedic drama that is only paralleled by Burt Ward and Adam West (and yes, that is a complement). Other times, the tension is so gripping that you would rather be torn asunder than deal with another moment of suspense. This is not some theological manual on discipleship; its a story of how a graciously good God delivers men from idols and how he uses discipleship (and a Spitfire) to do so.
This book is "Literary Platinum", the type of book that should be showcased on NYT best sellers list yet gets bumped off because its not as post-modernly chic as other authors are (who aren't as good and who's movie..um..book..um whatever isn't as hot as they think it is). It's the type of book that should be selling like hotcakes on Amazon because of it's creativity and vision for hope. This book is a comedic and tense journey to the celestial city, one punch line and tension building situation at a time. Be ready to get steam rolled by gut busting humor, brain imploding tension and a story that glorifies Christ in all the trials that these two authors experience together.
So, in my normal ridiculous fashion of giving Ted great reviews, I have to end on a few funny notes. This book is about two nobodies who become somebodies, but want to stay nobodies yet everybody adores them (This is really confusing). This book should has been nominated for the following awards: Two Drago's (the "If he dies, he dies" award and "I must break you" award), the Carl Weathers "face pounding, manifisto of masterpiece" award and the micro-micro-micro celebrity "Deserves to be actual celebrity" award. So take it from this bearded, guitar wielding, pipe smoking dude: sit back, be stupid and enjoy this book.
Dallas, who is a big guy and covered in tattoos, had a history of alcoholism, violence, drug abuse and drug-related crime, until he ended up in hospital and then at the Lansing City Rescue Mission. In the hospital two different people tried to tell him about Jesus, but he was not interested. After initially going through the motions of attending classes at the Mission, Dallas realised how much he needed the hope, forgiveness and love of Jesus, and he turned his life over to Jesus.
After hunting for a suitable car to work on, Ted eventually found a blue 1974 Triumph Spitfire. Dallas and Ted worked on it together while sharing life and working through issues. Dallas found a place in a fundamentalist Bible school, and, as an outsider from a completely different cultural background, had plenty of difficulties conforming to the school's expectations. Nonetheless, Dallas and his faith mostly prevailed and the car was eventually finished and ready to ride.
The book tells a great redemptive story, but it also sets an example for an active style of discipling that may be more effective, particularly for men, than the typical purely conversational style. Doing something together is often a better way to build effective friendships than just getting together and trying to be friends. I thoroughly enjoyed the book and highly recommend it.
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If you don't know much about autos, you might not enjoy it as much but it is still worth the read.Read more