I was raised on a farm in a small town called Standard, in central Alberta, the oldest of four children. I graduated from high school in Standard and after driving truck for a couple of years started apprenticing as a heavy duty mechanic in Drumheller Alberta. I had gone to church all my life, and knew the Lord, but being of service to Him was not on my radar screen. While working in Drumheller, I went to visit my sister who was going to bible school in Camrose Alberta. I found out she had had the entire bible school praying for me that I would seek the Lord and what He had in mind for me. I didn't have a problem with that, but my interests were in fast cars and motorcycles, not in what God might have in mind for me. That was for preachers and missionaries, not mechanics. There was no way I was going to stand on a street corner and preach from the bible. I could remember sitting in church one Sunday when I was about eighteen, listening to the sermon and decided that the two worst jobs there could ever be would be a preacher or a missionary. I learned later on, the hard way to never, ever tell the Lord, you can't do something. I met my sister Susan's best friend Brenda that day and as soon as I saw her I knew she was the one I wanted to go out with. It was not long before I found out she was planning on being a missionary and if I was to have any interest in her, I better be thinking along the same lines. She was going to get her nursing degree and go overseas. It's a long story, but the short of it is in February 1983, we took our three children, hopped on a plane and headed off to Pakistan. We came and went from Pakistan several times, spending about fifteen years total working in that country. We all loved it. The last few years were very dangerous at times because the Taliban had become strong and we worked in a hospital in the middle of their territory, I as operations manager and Brenda as the nursing superintendent. The first part of 'Amon' takes place in that hospital where we worked. None of what is in the book happened, but we experienced many things that tested our faith and abilities to the limit. We came home the last time in 2012 for family reasons and have been working in Red Deer, Three Hills, and Lacombe ever since, Brenda doing nursing duties and myself working as a mechanic. We miss Pakistan and the people there a great deal.
by Clay Mellsen
The Missionary couple had spent twenty five years serving in a very violent and dangerous part of Pakistan. They had been challenged to the very end of their faith and endurance, but remained true to their calling and triumphed through God's almighty grace. It was now time to go back home to peace and quiet. Unfortunately, the peace they sought at home was going to have to be fought for.
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