Review: Walking His Trail

Rating: ★★★★★

Authors: Steve Saint is the author of three books, including The End of the Spear, which bridges his father’s martyrdom to his own missionary calling. He also narrated the 2004 documentary Beyond the Gates of Splendor. In 1995, Steve and Ginny Saint went to rural Ecuador with their four children to work as missionaries among the Huaorani people; they left Ecuador in 1996, desiring to foster indigenous independence, which led to the founding of ITEC for “Indigenous Training and Equipping”:

Steve Saint started ITEC in 1996 to develop tools and training to equip the indigenous Christ-followers to meet the physical and spiritual needs of their own people. [About ITEC]

 

Overview: The subtitle of the book is “Signs of God along the Way.” Steve recorded these stories of prayer and providence as encouragement—and also to encourage others to remember and record things God has done—like the stone pillars set up by Jacob in Genesis 28 and 31, and by his descendants in Joshua 4 and 7.

The stories in this book span many years and serve the purpose of recording many stories about the Saints that are not in Steve’s memoir, End of the Spear, or the many related documentaries or biographies. It is worth noting that the chapters can be read in any order. In many ways, this book acts as a complement to End of the Spear.

The book is also beautifully designed, with a thick matte softcover and rounded corners (pictured above).

Meat: Although I enjoyed the whole book, my favorite stories from the book were chapters 2 and 7. In chapter 2, “Out of the Sky,” Steve meets a bitter and backslidden man in a tiny town in southeast Texas, and ministers to him in a way that, providentially, only he could.

In chapter 7, “Timbuktu: To the Ends of the Earth,” Steve is on a short-term trip to Timbuktu, Mali, and he meets the one Christian in the area—a man who was profoundly affected by the story of the Palm Beach Five. If you know anything about Mali and the western Sahara, this is a very impressive story.

As someone who could merely be capitalizing on his connection to the most famous missionary martyrdom of the twentieth century, Steve writes and speaks with humility and self-effacement.

I also discovered while reading this book that I have been to many of the locations mentioned in the book: southwest Minnesota, southeast Texas, and even—unwittingly—to the hospital where Steve was born and Ginny worked as a nurse, in Ecuador. There is almost no one famous that I would say this about, but I would really love to meet Steve Saint because of his unique story and his simple heart.

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