Welcome to Wales Awakening
Sunday, January 12, 2020

A travel-inspired perspective on this new year and decade...

melting frostDear Praying Friends and Saints:

A belated welcome to 2020! Not only do we enter another new year, but we embark on a new decade as well. Leading up to beginning of a new year we always hear prophetic words and promises about what is to come, and even moreso now at the start of this new decade. I'm sure we all have heard more than one of them. And yet somehow the years slip by without any great fulfillment of much of it, and we find ourselves back into the day-by-day of one more journey around the sun.

While reading though the first chapters of Luke, I found a few verses that spoke strongly to me, not about things that will come to pass, rather about things that are. John the baptist's father, Zachariah, spoke out by the Holy Spirit in Luke 1:78-79 saying, "Through the tender mercy of our God, with which the Dayspring from on high has visited us; to give light to those who sit in darkness and the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace."

Then shortly after this wonderful declaration, Simeon says in Luke 2:29-31," Lord, now You are letting Your servant depart in peace, according to Your word; for my eyes have seen Your salvation which You have prepared before the face of all peoples." These imperishable truths set the backdrop for the big picture. Everything else, be they days, years, decades, or centuries, are small matters on the stage of God's eternal kingdom–like so many waves on those golden shores.

The second chapter of our family visit found us landing in San Jose, California, on Christmas Day where Richard and Emily live. They met us our with daughter Grace and so it was a very happy moment when we all found each other in the baggage claim area!

Although both Grace and Richard have visited us in Wales on their own, we hadn't seen Emily, our 2nd daughter-in-law, since their wedding in October, 2018. So that made our time very special indeed. Richard's birthday was that Friday, and we went to see the redwood forest on the western slopes of the California coastline. Gladys and I hadn't been among those giant redwoods for many long years, and I had forgotten what a special place they create. I clearly remember the awe and wonder these ancient living monuments inspired in me almost fifty years ago when I was searching for the Lord I did not yet know.

Then on Monday we all drove north past Sacramento to join our oldest son Peter, his wife Allie, and then, for the first time, meet her parents, and our co-inlaws, Matt & Lorena. We had such fun getting to know one another and discovering yet another facet of our growing family. Lorena is Mexican born and speaks fluent Spanish, so she and Gladys hit it off big-time and really had fun together. We all did in fact, and also got to savor some amazing home cooking and good times around the table.

During our time in California we also enjoyed an added dimension of family. We made a surprise visit to the Verbo congregation in Redwood City on our first Sunday morning, and had such fun meeting some friends from long ago from this group of Spanish churches that Gladys and I helped start up in Guatemala in the late 1970s. We also spent two wonderful days with Francis and Suzie Anfuso. I knew him when we were both very young Christians, and we've reconnected a few times since then. They spent a week with us in Wales nine years ago, when they came to make an excellent documentary about the Welsh revival called Awakened, which you can watch at this link.

The way that we love and cherish our own natural families point to this broader element of family—God's eternal family. What lies at the heart of revival is His great desire and purpose bring people of know Him, to embrace His Son, and" to give light to those who sit in darkness and the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace."
May God bless you and your loved ones richly during this new year as we pray together for His coming Awakening,

Dick & Gladys


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