Lewisville High School graduate and “Jungle Sunrise” author Jonathan Williams will be featured guest at a Missions Night and Book Signing, this Sunday, May 23, at 6 p.m. at First Baptist Church in Flower Mound.
The just released Christian novel, published by Nordskog Publishing in Ventura, Calif., is the first by Williams, who grew up in the church, graduated from LHS and the University of North Texas.
Between college and seminary, Williams spent two years as a missionary in the jungles of Peru, traveling with the “Xtreme Team” into remote villages along the Madre de Dios River, a tributary of the Amazon. Their assignment from the International Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention was to share the gospel with members of the Amarakaeri tribe, an unreached people group who had never heard of Jesus.
While “Jungle Sunrise” is fiction, its setting and many of the episodes grew from real life experiences Williams had while living with the natives, sleeping on the ground, catching his own food, and telling the story of the Bible to people who did not even have a written language. When Williams and his team ended their two-year commitment, they left behind four villages of Christ followers who were growing in their faith and beginning to travel to even more remote areas to tell others about Jesus.
“Jungle Sunrise” tells the story of six people who find themselves together on a journey to reach a remote tribe in the Amazon. The missionary couple, the linguist and his brother, the photo-journalist, and the anthropologist each have different motivations for the trip. Through a tale of romance, adventure, conflict and tragedy, Williams shows us how time in the jungle can reveal what is really important in life.
After completing his mission in Peru, Williams married the former Jessica Guild of Flower Mound and enrolled in Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Ft. Worth to prepare for a career as an international missionary. While a student, Williams has planted Body Life church in Ft. Worth and also serves as Bible teacher and campus pastor of Trinity Christian Academy in Aledo, Texas. Jonathan and Jessica have one child, Gracie, born March 24, 2010.
The Sunday evening event will feature refreshments, book signing, brief update on the work in Peru, and readings by the author from both “Jungle Sunrise” and his next novel. Copies of the book will be available for purchase and signing.
Paige Patterson, president of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary where Williams is completing his masters, called the book “a unique and captivating novel” which “unlocks the secret of how to begin life anew, as the book’s central character moves from a depressing, directionless life to a rewarding and incomparable adventure.”
Jerry Rankin, president of the International Mission Board that sent Williams and other team members into the jungle, said Williams “skillfully transports the reader between two worlds in a captivating and suspenseful book…A subtle Christian testimony is effectively woven into the novel through intriguing personalities as they discover the ultimate meaning in life through trials and tragedy.”
First Baptist Church is located at 1901 Timber Creek Rd. in Flower Mound.
For more information about the author or book, visit JungleSunrise.com.