Chris Simpson (MA/CE, 10)

Alumni Spotlight

Life has a funny way of surprising you, that’s for sure! Many years ago when the Lord prompted me to pursue a degree in Mission Aviation from Moody Bible Institute, I could never have imagined I would one day be in Liberia with Samaritan’s Purse (SP). Today my ministry involves the use of a Cessna Caravan to meet the relief and development needs of SP. With the advent of Ebola in March of 2014 in Liberia, we have seen our work greatly morph from an ongoing development focus to a medical relief thrust. SP has worked in Liberia for over a decade and has focused on seeing the Gospel offered to the remote parts of the West African rainforest through preaching, teaching, and the practical use of development projects. The airplane gives those involved the ability to work in these areas without the added risk of road travel as well as the security of rapid response in time of emergency. Cargo and supplies are also easily moved over long distances safely and efficiently. 

It is a joy to see what “serving in Jesus’ name” means in this challenging framework. While the primary task on my plate is to manage the flight program, fly the airplane, and perform routine maintenance on the aircraft, I have had other opportunities to employ the MACE degree I earned at DTS. Teaching a systematic theology class to 25 Liberian pastors has been a highlight. Though cut short by the Ebola crisis, it was my greatest joy to see their eyes light up and hear culturally influenced questions that challenged and propelled me forward into deeper study and preparation. Having a small part to play in the health of the Liberian church has been very rewarding.   

During the last year we have used the aircraft to move literally tons of supplies used to combat Ebola. We have also moved medical personnel from many different agencies including Doctors Without Borders (MSF),  the World Health Organization (WHO), United Nations International Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and the Center for Disease Control (CDC). God has providentially allowed us as an agency and me individually to rub shoulders with these wonderful and loving people from all over the world. In the grace of God I pray that our investment in their work and lives will have eternal value. As we share the motivation for why we do what we do, may the hope of the gospel have it’s effect and draw many of these philanthropists to salvation.

Reflecting on my DTS experience of three years, I would have to say that I loved getting to know the professors most of all. Taking Dr. Toussaint and his lovely bride Maxine out for pizza, Dr. Allman out for sandwiches before our evening OT class, picking up Dr. Johnston from Dallas Love Field weekly for first year Greek, and other opportunities we had to get out of the classroom with these godly examples were a pleasure and an encouragement. I would challenge every student to take advantage of their time at DTS to get to know the professors and staff. They have so much to offer that doesn’t fit into a syllabus-driven discussion. 

For many of us the Christian life can be puzzling. Spending time on campus helped me take all the pieces of my Christian experience and, like puzzle pieces, have the ability to fit them together. Being involved with a ministry like Samaritan’s Purse has provided an opportunity to relate theology and works of kindness. These two must go hand in hand. Making that correlation has helped me live and practice a Gospel that is complete; a Gospel without holes.