Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘My India Experience’ Category

Sept. 29th, Monday 7:15am Panera Bread – Hermitage

It’s shocking how easy re-entry has come – other than slightly odd sleeping patterns.  I am NOT a morning person, so the fact I’m out of my house, in public, this early in the morning is Twilight Zone material.

I fear returning to the way things were before India.  Lord, just because the henna is fading – don’t let the change fade too.  Show me Your face, Your heart, Your will and most of all – Your glory.

Reading Acts was great advice given to me in preparation for the trip.

(That, AND getting my legs waxed so I wouldn’t have to worry about shaving in unknown conditions.)

I digress.  My apologies.

I truly felt like I was walking with the Disciples through the book of Acts.  I’m reviewing it again and here are things sticking out to me.

Chapter 1:7:  “It is not for you to know the times or periods the Father has set by His own authority.”

A new job is on His schedule and not for me to know just yet.  This is where Faith comes in.  I confess the planner in me sooo doesn’t like this.

Chapter 2:46-47  “..Broke bread from house to house.  Ate with gladness and simplicity of heart.  And everyday the Lord added to them those wo were being saved.”

This was our experience in India – every day.  Simple homes, simple lives, simple offerings of hospitality and new souls everyday.

Chapter 9:15-16  “So Ananias left the house.”

He obeyed immdediately.  Convicting.

Chapter 10:9-28  “What God has made clean, you must not call common.”

The caste system in India is still rampant and affects the church.  The pastors are so discouraged by the upper caste members unwillingness to attend church w/ lower caste members.  They completely shun lower castes.  Lord, please break through this.  Show them how harmful and ungodly this mindset is.

Chapter 11:27-30  “The disciples – according to their ability – sent relief to the brothers of Judea during the famine.”

The disciples met practical needs as well as spiritual.  We believers in America have forgotten this. Thank you, Lord, for the privilege of  giving to the children in the orphanages and the women in the villages.

Chapter 13:2-3  “…set apart Barnabas and Saul for the work I have called them to.”

What are you calling me to?  For what have I been set apart?  Lord, I long to know this.

Chapter 13:41  “Look…marvel…I am doing a work in your days….a work you will never believe.”

Oh Lord, please do it!  And please allow me to see even a small part of it.

Chapter 13:51  “…shaking the dust of their feet.”

I need to let go of those who rejected the Gospel.  Don’t argue – just pray for them and move on to the next house or village.

Chapter 16:25  “About midnight – singing and praising – doors were opened.”

Their deliverance came during the darkest part of the night.  And yet, they were praising Him in the darkest part – before deliverance came.  No matter how long it takes, I pray I continue to praise the Lord even on my dark days.

Chapter 17:22-29  “To the unknown God.”

Hindu Indians serve thousands of Gods – but do not know the only One that can save them.  Lord, empower the local Christians to spread the Good news to as many as they can.

Chapter 18:9-10  “Don’t be afraid, keep on speaking and don’t be silent.  For I am with you and no one will lay a hand on you to hurt you because I have many people in this city.”

A direct promise to us in Vijayawada.  This came to pass exactly.  God removed our ‘problem’ out of the city.  And placed high-ranking Christians in its place.    Very cool.

 

Thank you friends, for the honor of sharing my stories with you.  I am humbled that anyone would want to read all my drivel.  But it is MY drivel and somehow God uses it to mold and shape me – hopefully to look more like Himself.  If it makes a positive impression on anyone else -then Praise the Lord.

It’s all about Him anyway.  Right?

Advertisements

Read Full Post »

The Firsts:

1.  Road a boat to church

2.  Ate a pomegranate

3.  Seeing lepers begging on the side of the road.

4.  Ate Indian food called Talle or something like that.

5.  Saw at least 200 men relieve themselves on the side of the road.  ick.  Could have gone all my life w/out seeing that.

6.  Saw roaches around us during a meal -and kept eating.

7.  Told to stop telling the Gospel by a Hindu man.

8.  Had women and children beg me for food.

9.  Ate rice with my hands, just like a real Indian.

10. Got a tatoo. (Ok it was henna, but I waited a bit before telling my parents that. ha.  What fun.)

 

Pray for the people of India

Read Full Post »

Sept. 26th, Friday

We are now on the runway in Amsterdam heading to Memphis, then Nashvegas.

There have been so many special moments.  I know I’ve learned a lot, but it will take time to process it all.

I don’t have any more clarity on the job front.  But I know that will come as I meet with people….and when the Lord is ready for me to know.

I don’t want to lose what has been birthed in me.  It is a growing desire to share the truth with the lost.  I pray for a holy boldness and yet discernment.

I think about my neighbors and what opportunities I have wasted.  It is so much harder to witness in the States.  But God has already answered so many prayers.  I know He’s got more things “up His sleeve.”

I kept a list of things God did while we were there.  There’s no way of capturing it all, but here are a few things:

1.  Safe all the way there.

2.  Only one bag lost

3.  Bag delivered

4.  Police inspector ‘mysteriously’ transferred out of the city.

5.  NO stomach or food issues.

6.  Actually had good food.

7.  New friendships

8.  No real trouble with the government

9.  Commissioner & fellow Christian promising protection for us.

10.  Meeting beautiful Indian believers

11.  Watching the Light come on in so many’s eyes.

12.  Great shopping

13.  Learning I can be adaptable.

14.  Receiving physical strength when I could hardly stand minutes earlier.

15.  Walking through Acts.

16.  Falling in love with the people of India.

17.  Keeping my sense of humor.

Read Full Post »

Sept. 25th, Thursday

The rest of the day involved shopping at the hotel gift shop and grazing at the buffet.   Uh, I should have introduced my system to American food a little slower.  I felt like a woman 9 months into a pregnancy of quadruplets. 

Finally around 10:30pm we headed back to the airport for the flight from Hyderabad to Amsterdam.

I slept the entire time.

But here are some of the faces and images that I see in my dreams.

Read Full Post »

Sept. 24th, Wednesday

Breakfast.  Our last day in Vijayawada.  We shared alot about what the trip had meant to us.  Our totals were over 1663.  The Food and Beverage staff were standing by as always.  S, our lead pastor asked them the question and talked to them a while. Four of the Five were not in the family and readily accepted the invitation, praying right then and there.

We boarded the bus for the 6-8 hour drive back to Hyderabad.  It went smoothly with no hiccups.  We arrived at the hotel where the Hyderabad Family Members greeted us with garlands of jasmine.

E and her Cousin took us shopping at the Emporium.  I’m sure the Hyd. economy noticed a nice boost from our sincere contributions to its industy.  Just doing our part to help the nationals. ;0)

After the Emporium we went to dinner.

At Dominoes.  Pizza, after days of rice.  Take some tums and eat up!

Pizza.  After 10 days of rice and crackers. (oh, and 2 liters of water a day.)

After that we returned to the hotel where the pearl lady set up a display of her jewelry.  We were like pirahnas at feeding time.

Eventually we boarded the bus for the 1 hr. drive to the airport.  We had a 3am flight to Amsterdam (apparently there’s an airport there. ha.)

We were all lined up at the airport, luggage and all when we found out our flight was cancelled. 

Not delayed.  Cancelled.

Our hearts sank.  It had been wonderful but we were tired and ready to be home in our own beds.

But God had something up His sleeve.

(Doesn’t He always?)

KLM airlines placed us – very quickly – in a nearby hotel.  Not just any hotel, but the brand new Novotel Hotel.  It had been opened all of 10 days. After going through hotel security – which resembled scenes from Alias – we entered the hotel.

Oh my soul!

Here are some of the things we were quoted saying in the next half hour:

“A real shower!”

“A down Duvet!”

“There’s BEEF on the buffet!”

“Ice cream!”

“Did you feel those towels?!”

We were like the Beverly Hillbillies lost in the big city.  And we would be here for a whole 24 hours. 

 

Looks like an IKEA store doesn’t it?!!!!!

The next day, the hotel sent us girls to the spa at their sister hotel since theirs wasn’t open just yet.  A day at the spa!  After the poverty we’d seen, this was an odd turn of events.

I could feel God smiling down on us.  Not one of us would have traded this for a day in Amsterdam.

Read Full Post »

Sept. 23rd, Tuesday

I slept well, but am still very weak.  I didn’t think I’d make it to breakfast and asked Faye to pray over me.  I was fighting tears during her prayer.  Exhaustion makes me weepy.

After breakfast we got in our taxis and drove to the next village.  As I stood in the church, I could feel myself getting stronger. 

Just in time. 

Just like God.

As the day went on I realized I felt better than I had in two days.  God is so faithful, giving just the right amount of strength just at the right time and not a moment before.  I’ve had to lean on Him like never before.  I’m learning about pushing forward even when your emotions aren’t there.  Sharing your story even when you’d rather be taking a nap.  I’ve asked the Lord to give me a passion and I’m learning about obedience first and then His faithfulness in its midst.

One face will stay with me forever.  He is a believer.  The only one in his Hindu family.  When we arrived at his house we were greeted by his teenage daughter.  He joined us a little later, in time to hear the gospel being presented to his daughter. 

I will never forget the expressions on his face as he listened to the Greatest Story Ever Told.  A story he already knew.

He would close his eyes, nod his head and smile.  He was relishing in its telling, anticipating the next part as if it were the sweetest song ever heard.

And the tears came when his daughter said the sinner’s prayer.  Such a smile, I’m sure I’ve never seen.

I have cried recounting the moment in my memory.

How many times have I heard the story?  Hundreds I’m sure.  How many times have I drifted off to sleep in a sermon, or read the scriptures with only half my mind on it. 

How it’s sweetness has been forgotten to me.

I believe, that’s the saddest thing that can happen.  Lord, forgive me.  Restore to me the joy of Your salvation!

Read Full Post »

Sept. 22, Monday

We received new teams today. Our new pastor would also be our interpreter.  Pastor Matthew is a 72 year old fireball.  Not big as a minute but a fast walker and talker.  He loves to laugh and talk about the Lord and he does both as much as possible.  One of my favorite phrases of his is “We must TACKLE them with the Gospel!” 

And tackle them he does. 

Gary and I watched in amusement as he has the most lively exchanges with the folks in the villages.  He is direct, energetic and passionate, but wins them over with humor and reasoning.  Well, of course, it’s the Holy Spirit doing the work.  But God has given him a unique gift.

It’s been amazing to watch both Hindus and Muslims talking to the pastors and listening so intently.  I love watching the light come on in their eyes and listening to them say the prayer that changes their life forever.

By this afternoon, I wasn’t feeling well at all.  Too tired to breathe, it feels like a migraine is coming on.    The heat and humidity is unlike anything I’ve encountered in the States.  Every afternoon when I come back to the hotel, my money belt and all the bills inside it are soaking wet.  Apparently that rule of drinking at least 2 liters of water a day is actually important. 

Dehydration stinks.

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »