With wit, humour and a good deal of self-deprecation, Dr Ross James reflects on 40 years of living and working internationally. Ross is a story teller who draws on personal journals and correspondence to tell the story of what happened after he left a family funeral business and yielded to the leading of Providence.
Ross explains an Ascent, a 20-year period of preparation as a journalist, academic and researcher. The ascent of preparation levelled out on the Crest of purpose, what was to be his life’s work, motivated by the teachings of Jesus whose life exemplified care for the marginalised and poor. He lived and worked in several Asian countries then relocated to Australia and led initiatives to develop community-centred media projects throughout Asia.
After detailing the Ascent and explaining the Crest, in Perspective Ross reflects on achievements concurrent with clinical depression accompanied by despair and loss of joy. Some excerpts from his personal journals are painful reading; some revelations are vulnerable honesty. Yet, Ross accepts a proposition that depression might have been a ‘gift of a handicap’ which compelled him to depend on Providence to overcome his limitations. His startling conclusion is that he is, after all, a bamboo camel, designed with specifications to fulfil a providential purpose.
This is neither a book on Christian mission or depression nor a devotional about a victorious Christian life. It is a memoir, a truly authentic reflection of someone’s dependence on Providence to maintain a steadfast life lived in response to circumstances that few are called upon to endure.
“Ross James shares his memories of a voyage through life in a way that is honest and vulnerable, caring and sensitive…”
John (JD) Donoghue, former radio broadcaster, and colleague
“A hard-hitting and humble mission memoir…”
Lloyd Porter, Director of Mission Studies, Vose Campus, Morling College
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