The Best Kind of Good News

By John D. Maust, MAI President John 2015 headshot

What is the best good news that you have ever received?

I recently asked some friends to describe a time when they received some really good news.

Some, with great emotion, shared dramatic news:
*A scary medical test that came back negative
*A family member had survived a serious accident or catastrophe
*An unexpected financial gift in a time of hardship
*The offer of a new job

Strikingly, each case involved a hard situation that was entirely beyond the person’s power to control or change.  A happy resolution depended on someone, or something else—regardless of the person’s skills, contacts or maneuvering.  That’s what made the news so good.

We Christians know about another kind of Good News. But the phrase can become a kind of spiritual cliché. Maybe it’s time we reflect on what makes this news so good.

People try in vain to earn God’s forgiveness or approval through good works. But the Good News is that our salvation is entirely a gift through faith in Jesus Christ. What a relief. What amazing grace. What good news!

MAI is privileged to equip Christian publishers and writers who are sharing Good News around the world, often at personal risk or sacrifice.

Kornel (left) with ChinKar Tan of Singapore, LittWorld 2015. Photo by Karen Crespo.

Kornel (left) with ChinKar Tan of Singapore, LittWorld 2015. Photo by Karen Crespo.

“Publishing is not about making books and selling them, but about fulfilling a larger calling: to spread the Good News to our hopeless world with the help of the Holy Spirit,” said Hungarian publisher Kornel Herjecki.
Each book and article published as a result of MAI training has the potential to transform a reader’s life, to strengthen the Church and to influence society with Christian values.

Thank you for helping global publishers and writers share the Good News through your prayers and gifts.  And, take a moment to reflect on just how good this news really is.

Cambodia: Manna in the Desert of Magazine Publishing

cover-11-lowres2“Sometimes I want to give up, said Linat Tiv of Cambodia. “I complain to God like Moses, but every time God provides.”

At our LittWorld 2015 conference, Linat described her desert journey in magazine publishing. The petite 35-year-old mother of two is CEO of Light of Times, her country’s first and only Christian magazine.

Three years ago, Linat was enjoying her supervisory position at World Vision in Phnom Penh. Her salary supported the family. Her husband, Chin, had quit his job after leaders of multiple churches affirmed his calling to produce a magazine to help families live biblically.

After he launched the first issue in 2013, Chin invited Linat to join him. She replied, “If I leave my job, how can we survive?”

Linat prayed for three months until she felt God saying, “Linat, I am the provider, not only to you, but to all people.” So, she quit her job and plunged into publishing by faith.

The couple sold their car, depleted their life savings, and started shopping only tiv-linat-and-chin-soksan-family-photosecond hand. But God began providing manna.

Seeking writer training, Linat called Christian publishing house Fount of Wisdom. The next week she attended a workshop there led by MAI board member Larry Brook. Since then Larry has encouraged and trained the magazine’s four staff members via Skype.

Recently Light of Times published its 11th issue and will celebrate its 3rd anniversary this June. Article topics include keeping children safe on the internet, testimonies, budgeting and more.

Most Cambodians live on $3/day (US) or less, so paying $2.50 per issue is challenging for subscribers. Six hundred churches each receive a free copy. In one congregation, 40 families passed their copy from house to house.

After Linat attended LittWorld 2015, she revised production strategy. They plan to increase printing from 1,500 to 5,000 copies.

“God never gives you a dream that matches your budget,” she posted on Facebook recently.