With Daring Faith: A Biography of Amy Carmichael — new cover, new edition

Many years ago, 35 years ago, to be exact, my first book was published. That is, my first book EVER.

With Daring Faith: A Biography of Amy Carmichael.

Here is the book’s first cover:

And here is the cover it was given a few years later:

And THIS, my friends, is the cover it just received, because it went out of print and I recently republished it. (With everything else that’s going on, I forgot to let you know.)

If you remember this book as one that you and/or your children enjoyed, please consider leaving a review, here. (The former edition had many reviews, but the new edition is just getting started that way.)

Five years ago when With Daring Faith was celebrating its 30th anniversary, I wrote the following :


These days when those who’ve been abused in a Christian context connect with me, it’s not uncommon for me to hear, “Are you the same Rebecca Davis who wrote With Daring Faith? We read that in our homeschool.”

It’s one of those moments of extreme pain and great joy that I get to experience fairly often in my life these days (living in vibrant color as I do rather than in pale pastels).

Extreme pain, to learn that much of the audience I was writing for was such a different one from what I envisioned, because when I wrote it I was completely ignorant of the great cruelty running rampant in homes that claimed to be Christian.

But great joy because I hear things like, “I read that book over and over. It was one of the few bright spots in my life.”

I can’t really take credit for that, of course. I was writing a biography, and the bright spots were the hilarious moments in the life of Amy Carmichael . . . and her determination, and her adventures, and her love for her Lord and for souls.

All I did was make it accessible for children (for the first time, though at the time I didn’t know I was writing the first U.S. biography of Amy Carmichael for children).

She rescued children, you know.

She rescued little children from lives of sexual slavery in the Hindu temples of India.

When Amy Carmichael wrote letters back to her people in England to tell them what was going on in this British colony of India, at first they didn’t want to believe her.

It seemed impossible that anyone would live so barbarically, especially in a British colony, right under the noses of British businessmen and British soldiers.

But it was true. Amy wrote Things as They Are to convince them.

For the majority of those little children, being rescued from the sex slavery of Hinduism and being taken into the loving arms of a Christian, they had no trouble distinguishing what the true God was like.

The love and care and safety shown by His people facilitated their healing.

But for the precious children in homes of great cruelty who read this biography, the distinction has been far less clear.

Those former children, the ones who read my book who have contacted me, some of them have been abused, cruelly, horribly, in homes that claim the very same Christianity as the missionary who rescued children. Sometimes they had received that book from the very parents who were beating them fifty times with a two-inch thick wooden paddle . . . or requiring superhuman work from them . . . or sexually abusing them at night. . . .

So what are they to think of that God then?

And so my heart breaks.

And yet I have hope.

I have hope that these young adults and older adults (because in fact, sometimes it has been the wives and mothers in the homeschooling families who were treated so cruelly and remember this book) . . .

will see and know that the god of their cruel, abusive past (patriarchal or even matriarchal) . . . .

. . . and the God of Amy Carmichael, who dauntlessly rescued children . . .

. . . are not the same God.

 And they will be released, fully released, to follow the true God in Spirit and in Truth, in all the joy and freedom and fullness He promises in His Word.

Jesus said in John 10:10 (His great “Good Shepherd” sermon),

“I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.”

It is my joy, by whatever means I can, to point to Him, the Lord Jesus Christ, who is the Way to this new life. Those who have gone before serve as examples and encouragements to me.

Thank you, Amy Carmichael.


3 Reasons Christians Fail to Care Well for Victims of Domestic Abuse (guest post by MaryEllen Bream)

MaryEllen Bream has been encouraging Christian mothers at her Imperfect Homemaker blog for several years. More recently, she has begun speaking up about domestic abuse on Facebook and at Hope for Hurting Wives. She has impressed me as a calm, steady voice in the world of abuse advocates, and goodness knows we need more of those calm, steady voices. And she loves Jesus. So I’m happy to be able to host her for a guest post.
Continue reading “3 Reasons Christians Fail to Care Well for Victims of Domestic Abuse (guest post by MaryEllen Bream)”

Southern Baptists and a Culture that Breeds a Generation of Abusers

This week the 288-page report about abuse in the Southern Baptist Church (SBC) came out. To some, it was utterly shocking.

To others it was, “It’s about time.”

I guess it depends on which side of the road you were standing on. What you had seen, heard, experienced. Who you had talked to. Who you had listened to. Who you had revered and who you had dismissed.

So I join my voice with others: It’s about time. Continue reading “Southern Baptists and a Culture that Breeds a Generation of Abusers”

If Someone Offends Me, Should I Not Talk About It?

(aka, “Don’t Gossip about Offenses”)

The “Someone Offends Me” Chart

Some time ago, the Victory Today Facebook page posted someone’s Bible study notes without context. As of this writing, 2.5 years later, it has been reposted (Shared) 88 THOUSAND times.

The original author said that in her original context, she was only talking about small things, and she was sorry this was shared without her context. So with that disclaimer I’ll proceed, because Victory Today gave only this chart, and this is the only context that 88,000 people had for reposting it. Continue reading “If Someone Offends Me, Should I Not Talk About It?”

Casting Out Fear by Whistling a Happy Tune

A couple of years ago I wrote a series about “fear” (part one, part two, part three). But I knew there was much more for me to learn, and for me to share with others.

Not to mention that I want my next Untwisting Scriptures book to be (tentatively) subtitled Shut Your Mouth and Stuff Your Emotions.

Yesterday, a beautiful Sunday afternoon, I sat outside with my Bible and pondered “perfect love casts out fear” in 1 John (which I plan to blog about eventually). As I did, I thought about the typical ways believers are told to “cast out fear” and get on the right track with their “perfect love.”

All too often church leaders and other church people tell us that it’s by “choosing to do right,” our actions, our behavior, our internal decisions. Gritting our teeth and forcing ourselves. Will power. There may be some mention of the Holy Spirit, but it is often passing and incidental. Continue reading “Casting Out Fear by Whistling a Happy Tune”

Does He Look Like He Loves You? (Guest Post by “Mara”)

Many Christians of my fundamentalist and evangelical background are wary of the concept of “religious experience,” at least partly because it has been abused in some circles. After all, “experience” without knowledge can open one to error and evil.

But if we as Jesus followers have only an intellectual knowledge of the Lord with no sense of His presence, then we face the danger of having a hollow faith. Our day-to-day Christianity can be devoid of the life He has promised (as in, for example, Ephesians 3:19-20). Continue reading “Does He Look Like He Loves You? (Guest Post by “Mara”)”

How Pedophiles Are Forgiven, From the Teachings of Jay Adams

This is Part 2 in my “Competent to Examine Jay Adams and His Teachings” series. Part 1, about counseling a pedophile, can be found here.


Many years ago when I was a very young and very naïve teacher at a Christian high school, I caught a student blatantly cheating on a test. I talked to her about it and told her I would have to give her a zero. Wendy’s eyes filled with tears, her face contorted, and she said, “Miss Henry, I need to get saved!” Continue reading “How Pedophiles Are Forgiven, From the Teachings of Jay Adams”