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Welcome to Wales Awakening
Friday, November 30, 2007


Dear Friends and Prayers:

We have been living in Cilgerran for almost two weeks now, and are still getting used to the change. It has been a very busy time, and we are still trying to find things, but progress is being made, and this is beginning to feel like home. On Tuesday we had some friends over for lunch. They were full of admiration of our lovely home and beautiful views, the wonderful silence as well as the many birds we enjoy. It served to remind us yet again of God's merciful goodness to us. And as a further token of His grace, our new landlords did not charge rent until December.

It is delight to be so close to the chapel, and get here in just a few minutes. As the weather is getting colder, we have put up our prayer booth again, and so have a corner where we can stay warm. It is hard to believe that December starts tomorrow. And that brings some extra excitement for us because we will be going to New Orleans to see our children like last year. So while we are still unpacking things from the move and trying to get settled, Gladys is already packing for our trip. Plans are for travel on the 12th, not even two weeks from now! Needless to say we are looking forward to being together with family over the Christmas holidays.

Wednesday at the chapel I began praying for our children when I was powerfully reminded of God's faithful goodness to each one of them. His promise to us before we stepped out into this adventure was that He would look after them better than we could. And He has been doing just that. Dicky, our youngest, was flown to South Carolina for an interview yesterday for an industrial design internship, which is what he graduated as in May, and he has a good chance of getting the position. Michael is enjoying his job doing computer mapping. Grace has just been given a job as a teacher's assistant for her last semester of her Public Health program at Tulane. And Peter, our oldest, has just received a promotion to sergeant in the U.S. Marine Corps. So of course we are proud of each one of them, and very grateful for God's care for them too.

While praying at the chapel recently I was reading through the book of Jonah. I have known the story quite well for many years, but this morning I was impacted by the Lord's statement to him in the last two verses of chapter 4. . "10 But the LORD said, “You have had pity on the plant for which you have not labored, nor made it grow, which came up in a night and perished in a night. 11 And should I not pity Nineveh, that great city, in which are more than one hundred and twenty thousand persons who cannot discern between their right hand and their left—and much livestock?"

As I read that, I realized that the focus of our prayers for the people of Wales is along these very same lines. In terms of spiritual reality, they have no discernment at all. Most of them don't have even the slightest interest in the things of God, much less any understanding of them. That is quite distressing when we know that their eternity depends on it! And this is not just the folks of Wales, but people everywhere. John 1:10-11 says something quite similar, " He was in the world, and the world was made through Him, and the world did not know Him. He came to His own, and His own did not receive Him." It was because God had pity on Ninevah they they believed His word through Jonah, and repented. And so we can pray for the nations that God would see their pitiful condition, like sheep without a shepherd, and pour out His Spirit on all flesh.

May His mercy work continually in us all,

Dick & Gladys


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Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Thankful at home in Cilgerran!

Dear Friends and Prayers:

This is the view that greeted me this morning, our third day in Cilgerran. As you might imagine, we are still very busy settlng into our new house. There are a lot less boxes now, and things are slowly beginning to shape up. There seems to be so much yet to do that we hardly know what to tackle next, but at least we are here now, and that is a great relief!

It was just two months ago that we learned we would need to find another place to live. Back then it seemed like such a big and unsettling challenge, but the Lord has showed Himself so faithful throughout, we can only thank Him. And of course things worked out much better than we could possibly have planned ourselves. We also have realized in the process of moving just how blessed we are with so many friends that kindly gave us their help. And it was only their help that made it possible. And the best part is that their love and assistance was really the Lord's love and assistance, and we are extremely blessed in His care for us.

Sunday afternoon we put the living room together, and as I hung this painting on the wall, I was overcome yet again with God's infinite goodness in every aspect our lives. In Welsh it says, "Give thanks to the Lord for He is good ..." And as I sit here by the fire writing this, the warmth of His lovingkindness fills our hearts with awe and thanksgiving.

I can still vividly remember being overwhelmed by this same Goodness five years ago on our second visit to Wales, and the tremendous realization that most people here just don't have a clue about His wonderful love and forgiveness. It was then that He called us to come here and pray for a spiritual awakening, and now here we are, doing just that. What an amazing God we serve!

And we are constantly reminded of what an amazing privilege it is for us to to be here doing this, and we also realize more and more how totally we depend on Him for everything. As we watch and pray in expectancy, our faith continues to grow in His sufficiency and power. We surely have none of our own. And now in our new home and so close to the chapel again, we have a great deal to be thankful for indeed.

As Americans at home and around the world gather this week for Thanksgiving, we pray that each family gathering will have more than the regular fine dinner and family fun. Why don't we pray that there be a special revelation of how every person alive on this whole planet actually depend on God's goodness and lovingkindness for every breath we take, every bite we eat, and every single hour and day of our lives. Let's pray that all might learn to say with the hymn writer, "I need Thee every hour..."

Thankful for His ever abundant grace,

Dick & Gladys Funnell

Hen Ffynnon
Cilgerran
Pembrokeshire, SA43 2SN
Wales, U.K.


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Saturday, November 10, 2007

Moving Day is on the way - Farewell to Beulah!

Dear Friends and Prayers:

This is one of the many beautiful views on our daily drive to the chapel. It has been a very colorful autumn and we appreciate the subtle changes from one day to the next. Although Thursday the subtlety came to an abrupt end. It was very windy and almost all the leaves are now on the ground in swirling carpets as cars go passing by. We will miss this village and the many neighbors we have made friends with during the last two years.

Early morning walks down the small lane leading into the valley below the house have always provided quiet times of meditation and inspiration, and were a special part of making west Wales our home. Also the open views to the east of morning skies and amazing sunrises will give way to newness and change as we move to Cilgerran a week from today.

Today it was very windy again. We had hung some sheets out on the line to dry, and when we got home late this afternoon from the chapel, a couple had actually blown off in spite of four clothespins each. One was in a heap on our side of the fence among a pile of leaves. The other had somehow gotten over the fence into the fence, where a eight young steers had been fascinated the billowing sheets, and they managed to trample and tear it but fortunately didn't swallow it too. They will not be missed!

We are amidst a flurry of boxes and belongings, doo-dads and details, trying to organize and minimize, and overcome the great surprise of how this all materialized!

This will likely be the last update from Beulah, and so we want to give you our new address and phone number, and look forward to hearing from you in our new home as of November 17th.

Also a special thank you for your prayers for Gladys this past week - her dental treatment was successful, and the pain is gone at last. And that is one thing we won't mind leaving behind at all!

Blessed by His goodness,

Dick & Gladys Funnell

Hen Ffynnon
Cilgerran
Pembrokeshire, SA43 2SN
Wales, U.K.

Tel. 44 (0)1239-614396 (omit the "0" if calling from outside the U.K.)


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Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Moving in His promises!

Dear Friends and Prayers:

This is just a brief update to give a quick progress report on our move. We have continued working around the outside of the house, and can now see a real change. Repairing the steps down to the house from the garage and cleaning up the front garden makes quite a difference. This week most of the trash will get hauled away, and the patio will be thoroughly cleaned. And while I have been busy here, Gladys is getting our household into boxes really for the move on the 17th., just 10 days away!

We owe a big thanks to our friend Meirion, the caretaker of the chapel, who has done the hard work of cleaning the brush that was growing on the rock ledge to the left, and that really brightens things up. In these shortened November days, the sun is getting lower on the horizon, and so this clearing will make a difference in both light and warmth inside too.

During these past couple of weeks, on top of the business of packing and all, Gladys has been struggling with a root canal that has been quite painful. Yesterday the dentist said it seemed to be making progress, and thankfully today it has been better. But we would like to particularly request your prayers for a rapid and successful healing of this dental nerve. If all goes well, Thursday the tooth will get filled and hopefully that will be the end of nearly 3 weeks of misery for her. She has been a good trooper throughout, but it has not been easy, and we really do appreciate your prayers for this situation.

I also want to give a brief testimony to God's wonderful faithfulness. Our financial support has slumped over recent months, and in the face of a higher housing cost, and the declining value of the U.S.Dollar, I can get a bit concerned at times. And so in our prayers we have really called on the Lord to confirm His promises to us. And just since the end of October the Lord has blessed us with gifts from totally unexpected sources and enabled us to cover the costs of this move! And so we bless God for His lovingkindness, and are greatly encouraged, and are looking forward to this next step that He has prepared for us and is preparing us for!

Thank you for your prayers and encouragement.

In His love and service,

Dick & Gladys


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