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Taking On Giants: A Pioneer Missionary's Pursuit of God's Vision for Ministry and Life (International Adventures) by [Portale, Joe]
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Taking On Giants: A Pioneer Missionary's Pursuit of God's Vision for Ministry and Life (International Adventures) Kindle Edition

4.4 out of 5 stars 7 customer reviews

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Length: 240 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Editorial Reviews

Review

"This inspiring story is . . . a gift of wisdom from an older movement to the new pioneers of global ministries." --John Dawson, President, Youth With A Mission

About the Author

JOE PORTALE and his wife, Judi, joined Youth With A Mission (YWAM) in 1969. They launched YWAM's French Ministries in Switzerland, France, and French West Africa and YWAM's ministry to refugees in Thailand. Joe served at the University of the Nations (U of N) as the international associate dean of the College of Christian Ministries, and now works with the U of N in Kona, Hawaii, training the next generation for missions.

Product Details

  • File Size: 4483 KB
  • Print Length: 240 pages
  • Publisher: YWAM Publishing (February 8, 2012)
  • Publication Date: February 8, 2012
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00773A602
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,411,509 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A few books I have read in my life are impactful. Taking on Giants certainly fit the category.

From Cleveland Ohio to the Ivory Coast and the Killing Fields of Cambodia. The true story of one man's obedience, and how it has been used to touch the lives of Thousands. A ripple set off by obeying his calling from childhood.

Life Changing........
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By Aaron on October 13, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
Taking On Giants is a personal testimony of Joe Portale as he pursued various dreams that he had of reaching out to French speaking nations. It is not a testimony in the sense of a personal conversion experience, but rather the book starts out with Portale in a Bible College and seeking what he should do next. In the book, we follow him on his journey of becoming a missionary with his family.
The only reason I give it 3 stars is because I do not have much experience with missionary novels. The only other one I have read is Bruchko, and I liked that one better. If I had read more novels in this same class, I think I would be able to judge better where it stands in its own class.
Some common themes throughout the book are prayer/intercession, hearing from God (sometimes using scripture), national repentance, along with various principles encountered through evangelism, and trying repeatedly to start ministries.
I am not sure I like the idea of taking scripture out of context and applying it to your situation. For instance there are several times where the author is praying and asking God for answers, and when his daily Bible reading mentions something relating to what he is praying about he takes it as confirmation or an answer. A specific example is that there was a time when he was asking God whether he should move to Hawaii for a time. His reading mentioned something about islands and he took it for confirmation that he should move with his family. Or again, when considering a move to French west Africa, he read in Acts about being a light to the gentiles and nations, which he took as confirmation that he should proceed.
I am also not sure what I think about national repentance. That is repenting for the sins of France/United States, or wherever else.
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Format: Paperback
If you want to know how to be a missionary in any country in the world, this is the book you need to read. Joe has been a missionary, teacher and a leader in YWAM for decades. The book tells incredible stories of God's faithfulness--facing killer bees in Africa, political red tape, trouble in refugee camps, and a few mercenaries along the way. The book is exciting and informative. He not only tells you the sticky situations you may face, he tells you how to get out of them or to avoid them in the first place. It's a must-read primer for Christian leaders all over the world.

Shirley Walston Carroll
Author of Kristal's Wedding
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Format: Kindle Edition
My intention in reading Taking On Giants was to find principles regarding community development and missions pioneering work.
Taking On Giants is the story of Joe Portale's adventure with God. The story takes you from the streets of European cities, to the deserts of Africa, all the way across the globe to refugee camps in Thailand, and out into the Pacific Islands.
The story is easy to read and follow. In my opinion, it seems as if it was taken from a journal script. The editing didn't seem very polished to me. There are interesting stories throughout, but not told in such a way as to keep me on the edge of my seat or itching to read the next chapter. The principles for ministry I was looking for weren't as prevalent as I thought they might be.
Something I was impressed by was Joe's heart of prayer. As life came at him head on, he was always quick to go to God for guidance and to ask questions. It's hard to portray the process of seeking God and how God leads to an answer in a book. At times Joe's decisions seemed a bit rash and selfish; other times he took some convincing as to the direction he should go. That being said, when Joe felt he had an answer or a direction from God, he pursued obedience, going 100% toward what he felt was right.
Within the context of team, Joe continually pushed and challenged people to unity. There were multiple times when this took tough love on the parts of all involved, but it always seemed to pay off in the end. This seems a bit of a paradox, as he left his family for months at a time and didn't always include them in his decision making processes. Joe was willing to go to places not many outsiders had been.
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