International Ministries


March 9, 2013 Journal
Join the 2972a432a74b4583829edc19ff319dbd9e825c34d424d8aee9fa0e79b5eacefd Tweet

from Susan Rice
Missionary Partnership Team Convener
for Kit Ripley 

In the winter months in Cincinnati, where I live, it’s a major event
when the sun comes out! Everyone’s mood and energy is renewed,
even though the temperatures might still be chilly.   We look
forward to having longer days, even though we hate losing an
hour of sleep when daylight savings time hits.  Light always makes
a difference, even in the middle of a dark place.
In her recent annual report to the Board of International Ministries,
Kit included a mention of this painting (above) which she did last
year in response to a worship service at Chiang Mai Community
Church.  We are meant to see a vision of God in the act of corporate
worship; and that vision then motivates us to bear that light into
the world. We “shine”, not with our own glory,
but as reflections of God’s glory.
As I read Kit’s annual report, I rejoiced at the many ways that God
has allowed her to bring light into young lives, so that God can
renew and guide them.  You and I are her partners, as we enable
her to live and work at the New Life Center. Listen to Kit’s
description of some of the ways that God’s light has transformed
just one life over the past few years:
“Last year, I had the great pleasure of officiating for the
wedding of a long-time resident of the NLCF!  “D” came from
a very oppressive situation of exploitation and came to the NLCF
in 2002.  I baptized her, and saw her grow and mature over the
years. She was an integral participant in the handicraft program I
have directed for the last 9 years. When “D” came to the NLCF,
she had never attended school, but while under our care, she
graduated from the 9th grade through a non-formal education
program, and went on to complete a vocational training degree 
in sewing.   In 2008, she was  featured in a video (filmed by 
Francisco Litardo and Stan Slade) about the work of the NLCF…
“When she finished her sewing degree, she was engaged to a
lovely Christian tribal man who is the son of a pastor.  Since she
has no family, "D" brought her fiance to introduce him to the staff
 of the NLCF and ask for our permission to marry him. I did pre-
marital counseling with them.  And the NLCF did the wedding 
for her! Karen Smith was the “mother of the bride”.  The staff did the
flowers, and makeup, and provided a tribal dress for her to wear.
I officiated. The groom’s family came to the NLCF, and we did
the wedding on the front lawn.  Even the Thai social worker who
had referred “D” to us 10 years ago came to the wedding to celebrate
this special day!  What a miracle to see God’s transforming
presence in her life!  She continues to be happily married now, and
keeps in touch with us regularly."

God has worked in this young woman’s life to bring her from a situation
of exploitation to beautiful bride!  While at times the darkness of the
world oppresses and discourages us, beams of sunlight still break
through.  As we move through the season which the church calls Lent,
and through the events of Holy Week, remember that Easter is coming!
The Lord’s voice calls to his bride, “Arise, my darling, my beautiful one,
come with me. See! The winter is pastthe rains are over and gone.
Flowers appear on the earth; the season of singing has come.”
(Song of Solomon  2:10-12)
Kit Ripley
American Baptist Int'l Ministries
New Life Center
Chiang Mai, Thailand