Archive for October, 2017

Willingly Dependent on God

Story by Lori Humrich

Out of the depths I cry to you, Lord; Lord, hear my voice, (Psalm 130:1, NIV).

This was my prayer for months after January 27th. That night David and I had a date. As I drove home, a car cut in front of me and stopped suddenly. I was able to stop, but the driver behind me was not paying attention, and slammed into me. While both the people who caused the accident walked away with no injuries, my right leg was severely damaged.

I remember seeing the side of the truck that hit me, I remember the cold, I remember the pain, and I remember they wouldn’t let me be with David. I remember the doctor said they had decided to save my leg, even though it would be painful, and I might not walk again. He said it would be a very long recovery, with several surgeries.

On February 6, they vacuumed out the bits and pieces that were previously my knee area, inserted a lot of metal and screws, and my recovery began. After being released from the hospital I was transferred to Glenburnie Rehab and Nursing Center. Being the youngest person there gave me plenty of incentive to go home. But I hadn’t thought through what that meant—I would be on my own for very long days while David was working.

Willingly Dependent on GodBut the real recovery was the totally independent Lori accepting total dependence. The doer and giver had to be the receiver. I had to learn to be graciously dependent on David, my family, church, friends, and strangers, but most importantly, dependent on God. God used this time of healing to call me to be totally dependent on Him.

Out of the depths:

I tumbled into depression and anxiety. My life had never been so out of control. Every sound in the house scared me, riding in the car terrified me, everything exhausted me. The littlest things to an able-bodied person sent me into a tailspin—rocks on the sidewalk, stairs that don’t have wheelchair access, being stuck in a restroom and unable to open the door to get out.

I cry:

Oh, how I cried. Sometimes with joy, but mostly in pain, sometimes physical or mental, and sometimes spiritual pain. Although I never had the “why me?” thoughts, I did wonder “why?” What was the suffering for? Then it occurred to me that maybe I was doing too much. Was doing all I could for God and the Kingdom keeping me too busy to seek God? In 2016, during Lent I was so busy with church activities that I jokingly said “Next year I’m giving up church for Lent.” Little did I know.

To you, Lord:

Willingly Dependent on GodI did a lot of crying to God, begging for pain relief, to not become addicted to the pain medication, to forgive those who had caused the accident, to forgive myself for not giving Him complete control of my life. Apparently I needed to be hit over the head with a 2×4, since I hadn’t listened to His still small voice. These months sharpened my listening skills.

Lord, hear my voice:

God did hear my crying. He brought me the love of First Baptist Church through cards, flowers, food, and presence. When people called or visited, I forgot that I was in pain. I was more than abundantly blessed.

When my boss told me they could no longer hold my job, how I cried. But God heard me. I had been thinking about going to seminary for several years, but because of the cost and my work, I couldn’t fit it in. I had told God if He wanted me to go, He had to make it perfectly clear. And so, He did: I started at Baptist Theological Seminary at Richmond in August.

My healing isn’t complete, but has already surpassed what the doctors thought possible. Recently I walked into church. I started driving and cooking. I am able to do some things independently again, but I have to remember that I need to follow God’s pace, not try to outrun Him. I have become willingly dependent on Him.

Lori HumrichOriginally from Michigan, Lori joined FBC in 2012 and was baptized in the James River. She met David at First Baptist and they married in 2014. Lori is a member of the Seekers Class, former director of Legacy of Leadership, and liaison for the Lambs Class. Wednesdays find her helping Beanie in the kitchen. Lori has three children and one grandchild.

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Story by Allen Cumbia. Photos by Paul Bickford and Win Grant.

ControlRoomDir-250pxTalk to anyone in your circle of acquaintances, and they will likely be aware that First Baptist Church broadcasts its weekly worship services on television. Ask what station or channel we’re on and they may have a harder time telling you, but it’s no secret that our television presence has been felt for a very long time—almost 31 years to be exact.

audio-board-250pxFirst Baptist has been blessed to air services that entire time on WRIC TV, the local ABC affiliate. That we’ve been able to do so for so long is a testament to much vision, foresight and planning. A very important factor in making the commitment to broadcasting our services had been the huge financial cost to our church. That is one reason you see so few broadcast-quality church services on local television stations.

FBC likely would not have started our Television Ministry or kept it going without the generous support of our Endowment Fund. Additionally we’ve had designated gifts, large and small, to do extra things like “Richmond Christmas Celebration,” an hour-long broadcast made as a gift to the Richmond community in 2003. That production cost more than $115,000.

timecode-250pxThere is nothing about television that is cheap, so how much money are we talking about? To begin with, more than $1 million is invested in the television and audio equipment necessary to produce our weekly services. While a video can be streamed with an iPhone, the quality of broadcast on such a device cannot compare with our production.

switcher-250pxEquipment necessary for broadcast-quality television include five Sony HD cameras with lenses, viewfinders, and base stations sending a signal over fiber optic cable. In addition, there are a production switcher, almost two dozen monitors for various workstations, audio mixers in the sanctuary and TV control room, video and audio editing software, secondary capture devices for ISO video and audio streams, a timecode generator, multiple distribution amplifiers for video and audio, video and audio embedders, intercom systems, a closed captioning encoder, multiple patch panels, several waveform monitors, microphone systems, microwave equipment, and many other smaller components. Also required are computers with software to broadcast our services on the air or stream on the World Wide Web. Finally, there are the costs for maintenance and support contracts, as well as more than $100,000 a year to air our services on TV8.

prompter-250pxIn these tight budget times, can the church afford to produce television broadcasts each week? We believe that the answer is “Yes!” and that we must continue to do so. Our broadcast is one of the ways we tell the story of First Baptist, and there are countless church members who had their first introduction to us through our broadcast. Many who watch us are homebound or in the hospital and consider us their lifeline because we are the only way to be connected to a church community. Two of our newest church members, Sidney Buford and Betty Isaacs, tuned in on a snowy day when they couldn’t get out to their own church and liked what they saw. Others were new to town and checked us out on TV before they made the drive down. As our society has become more mobile and more likely to have competing plans on Sunday mornings, our web stream offers a way to stay connected via a computer or mobile device from the beach, in an airport, or wherever one may be on Sunday morning. Our consistent web viewers live in Maine, New Jersey, Kansas, elsewhere in the nation, and all over the state of Virginia.

FBC’s Television Ministry is almost completely manned by volunteers. While there are two full-time and two part-time people in the Communication Ministry, the TV broadcast would not be possible without the 30-plus volunteers who give untold hours each year. One of them, Ed Foley, drives from Wintergreen each week he is on crew. To hire people to produce our broadcast would truly be more expensive than the church could afford.

Give thanks not only for these folks, but for a church that cares enough to share the good news of Christ via a television broadcast that literally reaches the world.

Author’s note: The Television Ministry is always open to volunteers joining this exciting ministry area. Contact Allen Cumbia for information.

Read related stories: A Brief History of the First Baptist Church Television Ministry, Part 1;  Part 2


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