The Rumley Family

Loving Jesus, Loving Life

Tag: missions (page 1 of 4)

Budapest or bust!

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Luke and I have been so very blessed to have the opportunity to participate in two overseas missions trips together: Greece/Italy in 2010 and Bulgaria in 2012. We have been so blown away by the financial and prayer support our family and friends have provided in the past. We’re thankful to serve a God who owns the cattle on 1,000 hills (and the hills themselves). 🙂

In less than 6 weeks, we’ll be returning to Europe for a third time, to once again serve ABWE’s CEEMed team. (That stands for Association of Baptists for World Evangelism’s Central and Eastern European and the Mediterranean team. A mouthful for sure!) We will be attending their enrichment conference, where the missionaries from all over the region will gather to be refreshed and rejuvenated for the work that God has given them.

If you have been on Facebook, glanced at a newspaper in the grocery store line, scrolled past the 11 o’clock news on the TV…you probably realize how volatile things are in Central Europe right now, especially in Ukraine.

We will have the great privilege of encouraging the missionaries from Ukraine and other countries (Poland, Slovakia, Hungary, Romania, etc, etc) to keep fighting the good fight. We are officially there to play worship music, but we also love to get to know the missionaries, to hear their stories and their struggles, to pray with them, and to watch their kiddos for a couple of hours one evening so they can have some free time.

Because this will be our third trip, we have already made relationships with many of these families, and we look forward to having a bit of a reunion with them. What an amazing thing it is to be a part of the family of God, where Jesus binds us all together.

So what can you do? As always, there are two big needs.

The first is always prayer.

We need the hand of God on this trip more than we need our next breath. He is the One who sustains us, watches over us, leads us, and orchestrates the events of our lives to bring Himself glory. Please pray that He will allow us to be a great encouragement to these faithful warriors who are on the front lines of ministry every single day.

The second is financial support.

We just found out last week that we will need to supply around $1700 for this trip. That total is lower than in the past because our awesome church family has already taken an offering to cover some expenses, including airfare and extra baggage costs. (You can imagine how much baggage we have to take, with instruments and sound equipment!)

You can help by donating as much or as little as you feel led to do. We are not salespeople. We will not pressure you into donating, nor will we make you feel guilty for not donating. We are just confident that you will be blessed by putting your oar in the water for this adventure! We’d love for you to get a piece of the joy that we can all experience from serving our great God!

I will have my techie husband put up a PDF of the donation slip Oh look, techie husband has put up the PDF donation slip (to be mailed to our church) and the Paypal donation link (for instant donating, but not tax-deductible). Thanks in advance to anyone who is willing to help in this way!

We look forward to coming back from Budapest with joy in our hearts and a story to tell of the great things God does! We are so happy to serve Him in this way! Thanks for being a part of it!

Missionaries are Real People, Too!

You might remember when Luke and I went on a short-term missions trip to Greece and Italy in the fall of 2010? The Italy portion of the trip was such a great opportunity for us to see missionary life in the day-to-day grind, and to connect with our friends Keith and Debby. 🙂

Here is a picture from that trip, at the Duomo, a very ornate cathedral in Milan.

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I know in my brain that missionaries are just real people who love Jesus and have chosen to respond to the Great Commission full time…But it sure was great to spend some time with them and really see what day-to-day life is like.

And it was fun to build a relationship with them, so that when they came back on furlough this summer, we could spend time with them and have FUN! 🙂

I think everyone should have missionary friends.

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Our kids got along great with their kiddos, which was really great, too. It’s always easier for our kids to pray for missionaries when they love their kids.

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We had them over to our house (as you can see in the pictures above), and then were able to meet up with them a couple of weeks later at a local fair called Dutton Days. They had a small parade, free inflatables to jump around on, and a free photo booth where we made fools of ourselves. 🙂

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Keith and Debby brought along their Italian friend Andrea, who was visiting the States for the first time. And he had his very first ever hot dog that day. Not sure he was too impressed. 🙂 I thought it was a little embarrassing that we went to Italy and had amazing coffee and pasta and wood-fired pizza…and he came here and had a hot dog. Doesn’t really compare to his homeland, I’m afraid.

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I’m so thankful for these people! They’re gone from Michigan already, but I’m glad to know our parting is not “Goodbye” but “Until we meet again!”

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Bulgaria Recap

The team before departure, along with Pastor Chris Weeks and his wife Michelle, who accompanied us from Kent City Baptist Church

This morning in church, we sang this song. And as I was standing there singing, my eyes filled with tears. I’m so glad that the Bible tells us that the Holy Spirit understands our deepest groanings, because that’s what this felt like.

We learned the song specifically for our Bulgaria trip, at the request of the missionaries. It’s a beautiful, lyrically rich song. When we were singing it this morning, I think I got a minuscule glimpse of what missionaries experience every day. I longed to be back in Europe with our brothers and sisters in Christ who serve with ABWE, and at the same time I was so thankful for our church family who is so precious to us and whom we get to serve with consistently. It would have been perfect if all the conference attendees could have been there with us this morning in the sanctuary of FHBC. Then I would have just been crying from sheer happiness. 🙂

It’s hard to articulate all the things we experienced and the lessons we learned from our time overseas last month. It was different than our trip to Greece in a number of ways. The most noticeable thing to me was that this time it felt like we were having family reunion instead of the formality of our last trip. We were returning to many of the same people we connected with last time, and yes, some new faces, too. It was more comfortable, if you will.

Another difference for me personally was that the anxiety and fear of traveling away from my children was gone. Absent. And I gleefully attribute that to God’s grace and the prayers of you, my friends and family.

It was a busy trip, with much time spent in sessions, playing worship music, rehearsing, and spending quality time with the missionaries and their kids. It was definitely time well spent. 🙂

On the last leg of our long journey TO Bulgaria, we met up with a couple of the missionary families. When asked what they were most hoping to get out of the conference, one of them answered, “I’m really looking forward to worshiping in English.” And this was articulated again and again by missionaries at the conference. They poured out their gratitude to us for providing the opportunity for them to worship together in English. After months and years of worshiping in other languages, they were so thrilled to be able to worship in their native tongue.

They thanked us over and over, and yet we were the ones who were so incredibly blessed by the journey. I wish you could have been there to experience it, but I guess videos and pictures will have to suffice.

First, here we are doing our job…Playing music in the conference room during a session.

One morning, all of us ladies gathered on the beach, overlooking the Black Sea to hear a short devotional and pray together. What a refreshing, sweet time! Kathy and I were able to spend some time praying with a missionary about a specific prayer request she had. What a privilege!

Three of the Romania girls on the beach of the Black Sea

The speaker at that event was Nadine Hennesey, a woman with quite a story. Her husband died at the age of 26, 11 months after their wedding, when she was pregnant with their first child. She went on to be a full-time missionary to the people of Kosovo. Her story is inspiring, and you can read about it here. I have read through this book already and would recommend it!

One day we were able to accompany the youth on a boat trip on the Black Sea. The weather was beautiful and the company was great! At the furthest point from the resort, we dropped anchor and were able to jump off the boat into the sea (doing our best to avoid the big jellyfish that were swimming around the boat).

Here are some of the awesome youth we spent time with…

And a video of the jumping…

We also joined the youth for a scavenger hunt in nearby Old Nesebar. Here’s the whole group of youth and youth sponsors (who were also former MKs)…

Our team was able to spend some quality time together, too. On our last day in Bulgaria, we went out to Old Nesebar together. Here are some images from this very old city…

Uhm, I forgive you?





A wholehearted THANK YOU to all of you for your prayers and financial contributions. Not only did your support impact our lives and the life of our church, but it impacted Central and Eastern Europe and the Mediterranean region as we built into the lives of the people who serve there every day! THANK YOU!

(For more of my pictures, visit me on Facebook. For different pictures and the perspective of my dear friend Kathy, visit her site.)

Please Pray!

A view from the last trip, in Greece


We are gearing up to leave our kiddos with my parents (“Grandma” and “Papa”), and I know the kids are really excited to spend time with them. They’ll be running around outside, playing with their cousins, reading with Papa, coloring with Grandma…that sort of thing.

Please pray for my heart to trust that God loves them more than I do and will always do the very best thing. I want to spend these days doing God’s work and not worrying and fretting and crying over my sweet littles. I will definitely miss them…SO MUCH…but I think it needs to be a healthy sort of missing and not an anxious sort.

Please pray that I will not be anxious in anything (Phil. 4:6). Last time, I noticed that night times were much more difficult than daytimes. Because Bulgaria is 7 hours ahead of us here, it would be perfect if you could pray for God’s overwhelming peace for me right when you wake up in the morning. Click here for a better description of what this is like for me.

I hope you hear my heart in this…I so want God’s work to be accomplished, and I don’t want to get in the way of that! I know my weaknesses, so if you could pray for His will to be done, that would be great!

Thanks for all your prayers and support! We’re at 100% of our financial support – Praise GOD! 🙂

Quick Bulgaria Update

We leave just over two weeks, friends! Can you believe it? I certainly can’t!

We are so thankful that God has provided, through many of you, $1334 of the $2000 needed for the trip. And in such a short amount of time, too. JEHOVAH JIREH! 🙂

As creepy as it sounds, we are now in need of just $666 to complete our portion of the trip. If we happen to receive more than that, we have teammates who are also in need of funds.

I’ll leave you with this video from our last trip to the CEEMed Enrichment Conference. See if you can catch the photos of us!

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