Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Overheard

Just think what you might have overheard while talking to me this past week or so...

On the phone...

"Wait! What is that on your hand?!?  Is that blood?  Why are your hands covered in blood? Oh wait, that is red and brown marker." 

"Get the guns! The British are coming! The British are coming!"



In the car...

"Well, I am going to get a sign that says NO PUNCHING! and hit you with it!!"  (Nathan saying this to Caleb.)


At the dinner table...

"But mama, sometimes we aren't thankful.  Sometimes your food just isn't yummy." (At least he's honest.) 


In the yard...

"Mama, I am stalking him (our neighbor) because he is General Cornwallis or a British spy or a Tory.  I need my gun."

"No, we may not string up our friends or our brother with the rope anymore."

All real comments overheard from my real all-boys. 

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Get Involved!

We have had several people ask how they can get involved or help with our ministry with Wycliffe.  We are so thankful for each of you!  We fully believe that Paul would not have gone as far as he did without the faithful support of the church at Antioch (See Acts 13).  You are our Antioch and we cannot do this without you!  Please read through the info below- You will also find it on the Get Involved! page above.  Read, pray and then act! 

Join us in regular prayer.  The details are daunting, the task enormous and the work immense.  Please join us by boldly approaching the throne of grace, requesting God's power and will to be done so that we would be open, willing vessels through which His glory works.

Creatively encourage.  Becoming missionaries and leaving our friends and family is a difficult, yet rewarding journey.  Emotions are high and deep.  Drop us a note, send us a silly card, recommend a book, podcast or video.  Be willing to be used by God to remind us of His awesome love through you!

Be a connection.  Help us to spread the exciting news about what God is doing through Bible translation and how regular folk like you and me can be involved!  Maybe you can host a get-together for us to share our ministry with your friends, family or small group.  Maybe you can connect us with your church leadership and invite us to speak with your church in some capacity.

Support us financially.  Our ministry is fully funded by partners such as you.  90% of your gifts go directly into supporting our ministry, while 10% is used to support Wycliffe's administrative needs.  All donations are tax deductible and you will receive a receipt from Wycliffe for your donation.


To give securely online, click here
To mail a donation:  Please do not write our names on the check, but include a note with our names, David and Wendi Richards, and our ministry number, 280090
Checks can be mailed to: Wycliffe Bible Translators, PO Box 628200, Orlando FL  32862


I thank my God every time I remember you.  In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now, being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.   Philippians 1:4-6

Thursday, September 15, 2011

I Want to Go to Africa

I want to go to Africa. 

(That shouldn't really surprise most of you considering we are in the process of joining a ministry and moving there.)

But even the great pull of this emotion surprised me a bit last night.   Last night we had one of the missionary couples with whom I stayed with while in Guinea Bissau speak at our church.  When they showed a video about their work there,

My heart jumped with recognition.  

My soul ached with longing.

And a still small voice whispered to the depths of my being.

I really want to go to Africa.

Now don't get me wrong...we are not moving to Guinea Bissau and I have no idea whether Mozambique will be anything like what I experienced in Guinea Bissau.  But last night, there was a tug, a desire, a dream realized in the familiarity of those pictures.

For David and myself, location was not a big part of our initial calling into missions.  We were willing to go where ever we thought God was going to use David's skills for His utmost.  We both had a desire for it to be an international position, but considered both Southeast Asia and Central Asia before settling on Mozambique. 

I now see God working in our hearts to develop a desire and a love for the people we will work with and serve there.  For me, last night, that desire was as strong as it has yet been.  I am so thankful for Him giving us the opportunity to go to Mozambique...

Because I really, really want to go to Africa.


Sunday, September 11, 2011

A Memory

From my journal, 9/12/01:

9-11-01
2 planes crash into the World Trade Center
1 plane crashes into the Pentagon
1 plane crashes into PA on its way to Camp David or DC

Lord Jesus,
Here it is the day after--I still don't have words to describe all of this.  Thousands dead in NYC, 250 of them the rescue firemen, hundreds missing or dead in DC.  God this kind of hatred, this kind of death--it breaks my heart. 

I remember the tense moments yesterday- the fear of what's next?  My first day at work- hearing the news, seeing the Pentagon burning on TV- hearing sirens all around us.  Being in downtown DC as things went crazy- people running, streets flooded with traffic- I am glad our office waited- thank you for Joel who gave me a ride home.  I will never forget the scene of desolation as we drove by the burning Pentagon.

Lord, Your ways are above our ways- Your thoughts higher than ours-- You will bring glory to Your name.  People are being saved from the wreckage today.  The media called it a miracle, but I know it is You.  People gathered for prayer all over the nation--and I know it is You.

People are going to call out to you in hate, but You will answer them in love. Let Your peace overwhelm us.  Be with our leaders as they respond to this attack.  Be with our military on high alert.  Be with people trapped.  Give them hope.  Be with the families who still don't know and those that do.  Comfort them.

Be with our nation. Keep us from turning to hate and anger.  Be with those who did this. Change their hearts.  Show them that a God who calls them to kill is no god, but evil.  Lord, I love you and ask for Your guidance today.  I thank You for a day to reflect and regroup.  I love You Lord.

In Jesus' Name, Amen.  

Read here for some more of my memories of that day 10 years ago. 

Friday, September 2, 2011

Some Days You Just Have To Laugh

When we were interviewing for Wycliffe one of the question that I clearly remember being asked was "So what do you do on the day when it all goes wrong, David is sick, you are sick, the boys are a mess and everything seems to be falling apart?"  My immediate response was to chuckle a bit and then I said something to the effect of "Well, at some point I think you just have to laugh about it and try to bring some humor into the situation."    I didn't think I would be laughing at life so soon...

Wednesday was one of those days when everything went down hill from the beginning.

It started with waking up to two broken toilets and me leaving the house early and the boys with David so I could take my mom to an eye doctor appointment.  She had some vision issues on Monday, including a couple of minutes of blindness in one eye, so we went off to see what was going on.  The doctor checks her out and quickly states this is not an issue of the eye, but he believes she has had a small stroke stopping blood flow to the eye on Monday and we need to see her doctor immediately.

While this is all going, David and the boys begin to get things working on the toilets and are heading out the door when hie cell phone rings.  Work has imploded and he spends the next couple of hours trying to fix things remotely and taking call after call after call.

Meanwhile, the eye doctor actually gets the regular office on the phone and they say head home and we will call you.  We head home.  They don't call, but we call them.  They say come in, we get there, they say, oh we can't see you now, come back this afternoon.  That isn't going to work, I push a bit and we get in with one of the doctors.  He says he thinks she needs some tests to confirm the stroke, but that is likely what it is.  Go home, rest, we will schedule tests and call you in an hour or so.  They don't call, we call them.  (Sound familiar?)  They say they will call back in 10 minutes.  2 hours later they call saying my mom needs to head to the emergency room since she has had symptoms of a stroke.

On the home front, work settles down a bit, David gets the toilets fixed and he and the boys head to church.  On the way home,  a deer jumps out in front of him, he swerves, almost spins out misses the deer by a a few inches.  A quarter of the mile further down the road, a dog jumps out in front of the car and David swears it must have gone between the front tires because he didn't feel a bump, but there was no way the dog was not in the road when he went by. 

Back at the hospital, I am LIVID by this time and am just praying that God keeps my mouth shut and me from slaying someone in anger.  He did.  We get to the ER where mom is seen fairly quickly but then we wait and wait and wait and 5 hours later she is admitted.  I go home and crash.

Next morning, I get up, take the boys to an amazing, awesome, wonderful, fabulous friend who watches them for the morning and I head to the hospital.  One doctor has already seen mom and told her a neurologist will be in around noon.  We wait and wait.  My brother and his wife drive up for the day (which was such a huge blessing.)  We all wait and wait.  Noon comes and goes.  The nurse say maybe around 4 pm.  4 pm come and goes.  I literally have to leave the building and go walk circles in the parking lot I am so angry at this point and truly think I am either about to burst out in tears or swearing...neither of which is really my style.  (God uses the time to show me some stuff though and I am thankful for the time I got to have with my brother and mom.)

Meanwhile, back at home, David picks up the boys from our friend, brings them home for naps and then decides to take them to the pool.  They get dressed, are super excited, get to the pool and it is CLOSED.  They come home, disappointed, but redeem the time playing in a small pool we have at at the house.

At the hospital, I am no longer seeing red when the neurologist finally shows up at 6:30 pm.  He spends 10 minutes with my mom, confirms what we already know (she had a mini stroke in her eye) and says she can go home.  PRAISE THE LORD for I am done with the hospital.  She is at home now, resting and doing well.  Thank you for your prayers and praise the Lord things were not that bad this time.

And did I happen to mention that this all happened on Wednesday, our 9th wedding anniversary?  David quipped, many more anniversaries like this and neither of us will make it much longer.

Yeah...I guess some days you just have to laugh.
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