In his words: Ramesh Richard April update

Dear praying friends,

“There by the grace of God, go I” well captures my sentiment, more so than the also true “there but for the grace of God, go I!” I never want to overlook the grace that carries and covers me all over the world and brings me back each time.

By God’s grace, I was carried on airlines you’ve likely not heard of: Spicejet, Druk Air,  Malindo Air and Qatar Airlines on a recent five-country, 15-day trip. It started with about 200 church leaders in a remote South Asia area, the gateway to the next two countries.

In the next country, I secretly visited our Lord’s family of 75 on a Sunday morning and with 10 thoroughly committed pastors at night. In Nepal, I publicly shared God’s Word with over 1,000 greatly enthusiastic leaders. They currently have the highest church growth rate in the world.

Then it was on to Malaysia for executive ministry meetings as a follow up to a “SWOT” exercise where our global staff had to each identify about 100 strengths, 50 weaknesses, 25 opportunities and 10 weaknesses of RREACH! A ministry directorate will oversee and implement what we discern as priorities for programs, funding, timing.  A day-long pastoral visit to nearby Singapore with weakening old(er) friends finished out the grace-filled trip.

At home, the month began with a group of about 50 grace-filled friends over a day of spiritual and strategic deliberation. What do the final two years of our decade-long human capital campaign (RREACHABLE 2010 – 2020) look like? And what about the next decade, too? 2022 and 2028 seem to be key marker moments according to … you guessed it … grace, grace, God’s grace, grace that is greater than all our sins—and plans.

Dallas Theological Seminary, too, is a grace-filled institution. In teaching the spiritual life course, I emphasize that DTS’ unique contribution to the subject is grace. I was recognized for 35 years of faculty service. I used to be the youngest ever on the faculty, once, long ago!

You, too, are a marker of God’s grace in my life. Your grace-based prayer carries and covers this servant’s ministry. Thank you for exhibiting the grace of praying, even as I continue in the grace of serving the One who died and rose again for us to ground grace into daily living.

In the Inexhaustible Vine,

RR

Faithful in doing

Dear praying friends,

In brief:

  • Praise God for a wonderful weekend of vision-casting with long-time and new RREACH friends.
  • Pray for Dr. Richard’s 15-day, five-country trip to sensitive areas in Asia.
  • Praise for continuing visa approvals for Dallas GPA candidates; please continue to pray!
  • Praise for the recently completed national GPA in Madagascar and pray for upcoming ones in Guatemala, Guinea-Bissau, Panama and Indonesia (women’s).
  • Uphold Bonnie Richard’s mother, Joyce, who had a serious fall.

The bigger picture:

RREACHABILITY [2019]-29 to post online

Four Dallas Global Proclamation Academy graduates now studying at Dallas Seminary joined RREACH’s vision-casting weekend. They prayed over the ministry in their primary languages: Tagalog (Pastor N, Philippines), English (Pastor G, Cameroon), Mongolian (Pastor C, Mongolia) and French (Pastor D, Haiti).

We’re grateful for the 70+ long-time and new friends who joined Dr. Richard last weekend for an overview of RREACH’s next decade of ministry. Praise God for how He has used Dr. Richard and RREACH to change how large numbers of individuals think and hear about the Lord Jesus Christ. Pray that we will be faithful in doing what He has laid before us. Pray for creativity, clarity, perseverance, provision in all ways, and fruit beyond expectation.

Dr. Richard has just left for Asia, where God has opened doors for proclamation and encouraging leaders in some spiritually needy areas. We are unable to disclose locations ahead of time due to local situations. Please ask for His guidance and protection, for the good news of the Lord Jesus to penetrate the neediest places, and for productive meetings with RREACH’s international team members.

Although we received word of three visa denials this week, God has granted 15 pastors visas to attend the 2019 Dallas GPA, seven from new or under-represented countries. Praise Him! We are praying for at least 10 more, and for even more new countries to be represented. Also intercede for us as we prepare to make this a life-changing time for these special young pastors.

The reasons for praise just keep coming. GPA Madagascar finished last week. Pray that these 19 leaders will preach, think and live biblically as they return to their homes and ministries. Also pray for preparations for GPA Guatemala, GPA Guinea-Bissau, GPA Panama and GPA Indonesia (women’s).

Bonnie Richard’s mother, Joyce, fell this week and had surgery. Please ask the Lord to sustain her through the recovery process and that Joyce’s firm belief that “God is in charge” will be a powerful witness to everyone helping care for her.

Thank you for praying!

 

Translations, GPA prep, and a recording session

Dear praying friends,

In brief:

  • Praise God! Dr. Richard was able to take a couple of days away for prayerful planning.
  • Thank God for progress made toward translating RREACH’s evangelistic and pastoral training products into Spanish, French, Hindi, Arabic and other languages.
  • Glory to God! Several visas in a row have been granted to 2019 Dallas Global Proclamation Academy candidates.
  • Pray for Dr. Richard’s upcoming filming of Scripture Sculpture and the postponement of a trip to Haiti.

The bigger picture:

Dr. Richard is thankful he was able to get away for a couple of precious days of intensive and prayerful planning. Please pray for more opportunities like this in the coming months, which appear quite full. Pray that Dr. Richard will be able to maximize those times.

God is granting good progress toward getting quality translations of LifeRocks, Dr. Richard’s media-based evangelistic outreach, and of some of his pastoral training materials. Pray for accuracy and capacity for more languages. Pray, too, for reasonable pricing.

A huge praise: Seven 2019 Dallas GPA candidates’ visa applications in a row have been approved! To date, 12 pastors plan to come, six from un- or under-represented countries. Pastors from Ghana, Cambodia and Solomon Islands have upcoming appointments. Many others are working on their applications and scheduling appointments. Thank you for praying and please continue. Also pray for GPA Madagascar, set to begin this week. Ask for God’s hand to be on organizers as they finish preparations and for the right 25 attendees.

Dr. Richard was scheduled to minister in Haiti later this week. However, because of the volatile situation there, the events are being postponed. Please intercede for Haiti and for the many other areas around the world in turmoil. Pray for God’s intervention—for safety, provisions, resolution of conflict, and especially for pastors and their families as they minister in those areas. Please also lift up Dr. Richard’s Scripture Sculpture recording sessions this week.

Thank you!

In his words: Ramesh Richard January 2019 update

Dear praying friends,

HNY is a popular texting abbreviation for a Happy New Year. It is a New Year, certainly, by the Gregorian Calendar, to which all of the world subscribes, though many cultures still have their own calendars running simultaneously, whether Jewish, Chinese or Indian. A New Year is new in the sense of hopes and desires, even a new chance at life itself.

On the very first working day of 2019, 24 of our global staff spanning five time zones in eight countries celebrated much that God did through us last year; anything else would be presumptuous. Echoing Romans 15:18, we lead Gentiles to obey God! Here are a few highlights to share:

  • Twenty-five (of the 300+) leading graduates of the Dallas Global Proclamation Academy (2005-2017) have been inducted as Global Proclamation Associates (GProAssociates). They will serve as alternates, complements and substitutes where and when I can’t go. They are my ministry succession plan.
  • Speaking at the 50th anniversary of a church I helped plant, with its 30 congregations and over 2,000 people, was overwhelming. A thousand memories of slogging to plant a fledgling congregation which would eventually become the central engine of this multi-site endeavor brought me to tears.
  • I was able to lead several “Gentiles to obey God” at a most prestigious dinner made up of about 100 leaders from finance, business and entertainment in a major South Asian city. Over a dozen responded to the invitation and some even rose to applaud—an unknown feature in these circles!

Pray for RREACH to better amplify my proclamation globally and multiply more of His proclaimers locally.

We have much upon us in 2019. I so hope we can see each other face-to-face soon. Thank you for under-girding my proclamation of God’s Word by your goodwill through generosity and prayer. With this new year still young, I wish you God’s great blessings for the year. HNY!

In the Inexhaustible One,

RR

Every prayer matters

Dear praying friends,

In brief:

  • Praise and pray for Dr. Ramesh Richard’s current ministry trip in South Asia.
  • Thank God that Dr. Richard found his much-used and convenient jotter pad!
  • Pray for special opportunities to proclaim our Lord Jesus this amazing Christmas season.
  • Ask God to provide just the right resources for RREACH ministry.

The bigger picture:

RR at Caleb Institute

Dr. Richard encouraging leaders and students at a new theological institute in South Asia

Dr. Richard has enjoyed many opportunities to talk about the Lord Jesus with opinion leaders—people of influence and affluence—during his current trip in South Asia. Praise God for the individuals who organized outreaches and for the good turnouts. Please pray that the messages keep penetrating minds and hearts, that many will receive Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior!

Thank God with us for granting even seemingly small requests. A few weeks ago Dr. Richard could not find his pocket-sized jotter pad, a handy little tool he always uses for visits with friends or opening comments during talks. He remembered where he had left it, but it had disappeared. He searched high and low and asked RREACH staff to pray with him, especially as time drew near to an international trip with numerous speaking engagements. The good news came to the staff after he was already en route—God placed his hand on the jotter pad (literally—it had been laid on top of a tall cabinet) the night before his departure. Thank you for your every prayer for Ramesh. We may have no idea how the Lord is answering—but He is!

People seem more open to thinking about spiritual and eternal realities at this time of year. Would you please especially remember Dr. Richard and all of our Dallas and national Global Proclamation Academy graduates as they proclaim God’s Word in many different contexts? Pray for their bold and loving witness. Pray for protection and peace. Pray for more people to realize and receive the true gift of God during the Christmas season.

We continually bow before God as He supplies what RREACH needs for ministry. We thank Him for every provision and ask His wisdom in employing it wisely. Please pray for His ongoing, timely provision and for blessing on every channel through whom it flows.

Thank you!

In his words: Ramesh Richard November update

Dear praying friends,

I am quickly over-running my allotted word count even as I begin this letter! Bring out your magnifying glasses to rejoice over a two-week, six-country, seven-airline-dominated last month.

  • China: A two-hour pastoral visit during a five-hour stopover after American Airlines’ longest flight (Dallas to Hong Kong—17 hours!) with a long-term friend weakened by cancer.
  • India: One of the richest days of my life in my childhood city! Two-hundred-fifty believers brought 350 pre-Christ friends for a day-long event featuring talks from converts to the Lord Jesus. I was energized by the spirit of the stories, and more importantly by the Spirit of God, to present the final 30-minute talk at the end of a powerful, jet-lagged day. Thirty-eight made first time professions of faith—a huge percentage! That night I flew to my birth city to talk to 20,000-plus people (mostly new believers) on the problem of evil.
  • Thailand: Yet another four-hour layover after an overnight flight allowed for a pastoral visit with a fine Dallas GPA grad/businessman/church planter. We finished with prayer for a child. That was Monday; on Thursday, he confirmed his wife’s pregnancy. God answers even before I pray! (smile)
  • Japan: A nation where the evangelical Faith has failed to penetrate. Still at an abysmal 0.50 percent, with most Japanese pastors soon to retire, they need a boost in recruitment and training of younger pastors. Who would have thought that RREACH would provide just that through our Global Proclamation (GPro) Commission? A Japanese leader who attended our 2016 GProCongress mobilized over 100 devoted Japanese pastors, older and younger, for GProJapan. They envision 50,000 congregations in Japan over the next decade.
  • Malaysia: God (and Bonnie) knew that I needed two slower days, which I found in Kuala Lumpur with RREACH’s director of Ministry Coordination, former Ambassador Selwyn Das. We had delightful times of meeting, eating, even shoe repair and a haircut!
  • Philippines: GProPhilippines was hosted by TOPIC (Trainers of Pastors International Commission), an organization founded by RREACH 20 years ago. We presented the new global facilitator of TOPIC, Al Bridges (formerly of BEE—Biblical Education by Extension). God used me once again to charge the 150. They plan to train 5,000 pastoral trainers to produce 10,000 new pastoral leaders by 2020!

I trust that your Thanksgiving season included what the Lord makes happen through you, me and this ministry. You were included in our United States Happy Thanksgiving season.

In the Inexhaustible Vine,

RR

Ramesh on the road

Dear praying friends,

In brief:

  • Please intercede for Dr. Richard’s two-week trip through Asia.
  • Uphold ongoing preparations for the upcoming Global Proclamation Associates event.
  • Praise God for how He is exciting young pastors about preaching biblically through national Global Proclamation Academies.
  • Praise God for good news from a dangerous situation.

The bigger picture:

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The young pastoral leaders at GPA The Gambia stand with the two Master Coaches helping them learn how to preach expository sermons, Dallas GPA 2018 grad Pastor S (in green) and Dallas GPA 2012 grad Pastor M (in turquoise blue). Pastor M also serves as national GPA facilitator for all of Africa.

Dr. Richard has departed for a busy personal proclamation and ministry training trip through four countries in Asia. His first stop includes providing the closing talk for a major event for opinion leaders. Pray that God will use this event to rescue many lost souls. After that, Dr. Richard has a quick flight to speak at the fastest-growing church in the world.

Pray, too, for his talks at a church multiplication event being held in a nation where, despite much effort, evangelical Christianity is declining. Pray for God to raise up many young pastoral leaders in this nation and region, and that their biblical proclamation of the Lord Jesus will bring many to recognize Him as Savior and Lord. Finally, pray for God’s leading in additional strategic connections Dr. Richard would like to make on this trip.

We would appreciate prayer for our ongoing preparation for the GProAssociates event coming in a few weeks. Ask the Lord for direction in planning the program and addressing logistical details. Also pray for Dr. Richard’s health and strength. He is scheduled to return from his trip just days before the GProAssociates arrive and, the Lord willing, goes into a RREACH board retreat immediately following that.

God is energizing young pastoral leaders about biblical preaching through national GPAs! The day after graduating from GPA Chile, one pastor held a youth conference for 1,100. He didn’t waste any time in emphasizing the importance of preaching correctly, even having the group memorize Dr. Richard’s seven steps for expository preaching. Remember pastors at GPA The Gambia and GPA Guyana as they wrap up this week and pray for blessing on efforts toward GPA Bolivia.

Last week we asked for prayer for pastors and families serving in danger/deprivation zones. One pastor called this week to say the conflict in the area continues, but they are now able to leave the house. The danger of being shot if seen in the street has abated. He is praising God for His goodness.

Thank you for praying!