What Can We Learn from the Life and Legacy of Richard Ford? 

Richard Ford was an incredibly motivated man, dedicated to his job of increasing voter turnout in the U.S. His success in that role led him to rub shoulders with many influential American politicians, but Richard’s vision was not limited to the political realm. He wanted to follow the command Christ gave His disciples before ascending to heaven: “Go and make disciples of all nations” (Matt. 28:19). He asked himself, “If I can do all this to encourage people to vote, why can’t I encourage them to follow the Lord?” 

Richard knew about church planting movements, but his research into how to start one was coming up short. His prayers for guidance seemed to come up empty. He was starting to grow frustrated when he found Zúme online. Thrilled at the answer to prayer, he reached out to Zúme coach Tim Ahlen, who led him through Zúme’s training and taught him how to use our simple tools to become a disciple who makes disciples. 

Richard “already had a lot of personal connections in his social network,” Tim says, so he began there. From his own home and neighborhood, Richard led others in the same Zúme training that Tim had offered him, and those in his network continued the learning with their own networks. 

Richard Ford was 78 years old when he reached out to Tim, wheelchair-bound for more than 40 years. Instead of sinking into the background, Richard used his incredible dedication to advance the Kingdom and spread the gospel, leaving a legacy of zeal and lifelong learning. 

Listen to our most recent podcast episode to hear our tribute to Richard upon his recent passing as we reflect on a life filled with meaning and the impact that he left on those around him.