Naomi Ruth Welch Finley, 73, of Lonoke passed away Tuesday, June 17, 2014 after a second battle with cancer. Ruth married George Finley on February 18, 1968 in Little Rock, Arkansas. Ruth was a devoted wife, loving mother, and doting grandmother. She was an encourager to all in her presence and she loved to laugh. Her humor surfaced in her personal motto, “Blessed are the flexible for they shall not be broken.”
She adored her family and she had a huge heart for people. She bravely battled cancer, never conceding, never losing her faith in God. Cancer couldn’t take the life of Ruth as she touched many lives, left many memories because she loved freely and lived passionately for Jesus. Cherished memories of Ruth Finley will live on for generations across the globe.
She graduated from Southwestern Assemblies of God University with an A.A. degree; University of Arkansas at Little Rock with a B.A.; did graduate work at University of Michigan and Assemblies of God Theological Seminary. She is an ordained minister with the Assemblies of God.
Ruth Finley served as founding president of Declare His Glory, Int’l. Her ministry has spanned years of teaching, preaching, as praise and worship leader and recording artist. The Lord was with her through the valley of affliction, through cancer and chemo, and to the mountaintop of restoration victory. She travelled to the nations and ministered through the airwaves of television and through music. The cry of her heart was, “Lord, show me Your Glory!”
When asked about her ministry her response was: “When I was very little, people would ask me what I wanted to be when I was grown, I would reply, “Missionary.” As a young girl of 14, I felt the call of God to be a Missionary, while attending a Boarding School in St. Louis MO. As I matured, I began to pursue education, a husband, and a family. Those thoughts from my younger years were moved to the back burner, but never obliterated. During college I was married with children and followed the Lord from afar focused on many goals that I wanted to pursue. When I surrendered to Him, that stirring about ‘foreign soil’ returned, and I began to pray – especially for the continent of Africa. When a friend of mine, who was a short-term missionary, mostly to Africa, learned of my interest, she invited me to Chile in 1990. This was a turning point in my life and ministry. Out of that journey, Declare His Glory, Int’l was formed in 1993.”
The Lord supernaturally opened doors for Ruth to go to Russia – many times – Chile, India, Argentina, Peru, and yes……to Africa. Every door God has opened came through HIS hands, not through my seeking, or someone else pushing.
Ruth Finley is survived by her husband, George Finley, her son, Thad Finley and her daughter Allison Finley and her brother Jim “Jimmy” Welch, granddaughters Madeline and Isabella, grandsons Taylor, Bailey, Brayden, Lunden and Tristan. She was preceded in death by her father, C.A. Welch and her mother, Kayte Welch, brothers, Morgan Welch and Pat Oliver and by her granddaughter, Lauren Kayte.
Funeral services will be held at 10 am Saturday, June 21, 2014 at Open Arms Assembly of God, Beebe, AR with Rev. Glenn Dorsey officiating. Interment will follow in Lonoke, AR at the
Brownsville Cemetery. The family will receive friends at
Boyd funeral home in Lonoke from 6:00 to 8:00 Friday evening. Online guest book, www.boydfuneralhome.net.