Interview and Book Giveaway with Jill Richardson

Tells us first how you came to faith in Jesus.
Funny, considering your story of a movie making a difference, that my first real experience with God was watching Jesus Christ Superstar. (Yes, really.) I remember just weeping during the cross scene when it hit me fully that this part wasn't fiction. It really happened, and he did it for me. I had never been told that. I was thirteen and had never known the gospel. But I knew it unmistakably then. I continued to search in lots of places for God so I could know him. Finally, I met a girl when I was 16 who was a pastor's daughter. She radiated the love of God like no one I'd ever seen. I knew this was what I was searching for. I asked to go to church with her, and I've been with Jesus ever since.

Where did you get the idea for your latest book?
We took our girls on a mission trip to China when they were 6, 10, and 11. It was such an experience for us and them. I knew I wanted other families to have that chance. So few do things like missions together but what greater thing to do with your kids?

What do you want readers to take away from your writing and this book in particular?
The overarching thing I want readers to always take away is that God offers them unlimited grace and resources, so they need never be afraid to become what God wants them to be.  This book? To realize that kids need to be in ministry, now, while they're growing, if we expect them to be followers of Christ when they're older. And a great way to do that is to do missions together.

What part of this book did you enjoy writing the most and why?
The stories of our trip because I got to relive them and process their impact on my kids.

What is your favorite Bible verse?
My life verse is 2 cor 12.9, “'My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.' So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me.” and the verse on my website is Romans 8.15 “This resurrection life you received from God is not a timid, grave-tending life. It’s adventurously expectant, greeting God with a childlike “What’s next, Papa?” God’s Spirit touches our spirits and confirms who we really are. We know who he is, and we know who we are.”

I love that, because it says exactly what I want to tell people—don't live in fear! If you know who he is, you'll know what your life is supposed to be.

What is your favorite comfort food?
Not sure if it's comfort food, but I love chocolate covered marzipan!

What are your hobbies other than writing?
Musical theater (performing and directing), gardening, scrapbooking, reading, kayaking

What is your favorite book by another author and why?
The Lord of the Rings trilogy. It amazes me how he tells this fascinating story and yet also talks about such deep theological and human questions. He addresses questions people weren't even asking yet, and it's all there. Plus, I'm character driven, so the complex characters intrigue me. I could keep reading and digging forever. He still manages to make it a page-turner!

Favorite childhood book?
Hmmm. So many. My sister always talks about how she could never get me to play because I was always reading. Little House books, I suppose and Ferdinand the Bull. Even then, I knew I loved the different underdog.

Have you ever had a mentor when you were first starting out? Who was it and how did they encourage you?
I had a woman who was an Aglow editor in my first writer's group. She wasn't afraid to tell me when something stunk. I learned a lot from her critique and honesty. We're too nice in Christian writer's groups. I'd far rather be told what needs to improve than have to wonder why I wasn't selling anything. Tell me the truth! I want to get better. 

Don't Forget to Pack the Kids: Short-Term Missions for Your Whole Family-


  1. This sounds interesting. I can't imagine taking 3 young children to China. I'm afraid to go anywhere like that. I do wish I was better about talking to people about Salvation. And, there are so many people who don't know the lord. I want to win this to read about her journey.
    Maxie Anderson ( 0

  2. I would love to read this book. It sounds very interesting.