July 4th, 2010 Pre-trip
This is probably one of the last Pre-India blogs that I’m going to be doing. My schedule for the next few days is going to be crazy & as training starts for me on the 8th & the trip actually leaves for India on the 12th. Needless to say, it might be pretty difficult to get to a computer very often within the next few days.
Here’s a glimpse of my schedule:
Tuesday: Last day as an encouragement rep for GE Groups. Wrap things up with all of the Youth Pastors I’ve been helping out & pass the rest on.
Wednesday: Work Registration for Team Leaders. Meet a few of the people that I’ve been working with over the phone for the past year =D
Thursday: Missionary Advisor arrival day. Work Registration & start some of my own training 😀
Friday: Get to know my fellow MA’s and do some leadership training.
Saturday: MISSIONARIES ARRIVE :D!!!!!!!
SUNDAY-Monday = group training & team building
Tuesday – Leave for INDIA!!!!!!!!
The way that the blogging situation is going to work while I’m in India, is I’m going to be journaling everyday from the 10th of July – 5th of August. After I get home, I will post each days journal entry on the blog with the date set to the corresponding day. SO – you can kinda get a sense of what’s going on while I’m in India & get a little bit of the experience too :).
Your prayers are definitely appreciated for the entirety of my trip & I can’t wait to tell you guys all stories about it when I get back!!!!
July 10, 2010
The past couple of days have been crazy & great all together. God has been doing so many great things already. First, rain on arrival day which is especially awesome thanks to Zechariah 10:1, “Ask the Lord for rain in the spring, for He makes the storm clouds. And He will send showers of rain so every field becomes a lush pasture.” and what do you do with lush pastures? HARVEST!!!! How’s that for a Rhema word? 🙂
THEN, one of the groups that I have been taking care of got $73 dollars more than what they needed in, when just one week ago, they were looking at the possibility of cancelling because they still needed $10,000! God is so good, and I know that my life is about to change forever.
*In the Houston airport*
Sitting doing my quiet time before we board our plane to Dubai, I’m looking out the window & praying. I just looked down, and on the ground right outside of the window, guess what number I see? 777. Right there, on the tarmac. God’s number. and there’s three of them in a row! That means completion!!! God is TOTALLY in this trip, and He’s totally anointed us to be here!!! I honestly can’t tell you how blessed I feel to be a part of this right now. As I see these Indian people (travelers back to dubai) all around me, my heart is already filled with love. I don’t even know these people, but I love them all the same
July 12th & 13th, 2010
These days were spend on the plane, and we lost one across the international date line, so no journaling here 🙂
July 14th, 2010
My first few minutes in Asia.
Just being here, I can feel a completely different spiritual atmosphere. The darkness feels kinda like an emptiness. I feel a strong presence in the emptiness though. It’s definitely a palpable feeling of something, but of what exactly? I’m not sure, but I do know that I feel the presence of God so much stronger here than I feel it in the US. I guess it’s just easier to see the light in the midst of darkness, ya?
My heart is just so burdened for these people. My heart is heavy. I feel like I can’t do anything but pray for this peopl, for this land and for the principalities to be broken.
I just still cannot believe that I’m here. I’ve ALWAYS wanted to come here, and now that it’s finally here, it feels surreal.
Got to campus & met the other team. God has been good to them so far. I can see it in their faces. I can’t wait to see how God uses US on this trip too. The kids at the deaf school that we are staying at are adorable. I’ve heard a lot of the kids have cut their Hindu bracelets off after hearing the gospel, and the other team has told us stories of going into Hindu villages that have NEVER heard the gospel before. I can’t wait to hear and see what God has in store for us. AND I still cannot believe that I’m FINALLY in India…Just wanted to re-iterate that 🙂
July 15th & 16th, 2010
Training all day, and recuperation from jet lag. It’s sucha strange thing. I’m not 100% sure what to do about it, but oh well :).
We’ve been preparing for our VBS all day. IT’s a lot different than I was expecting it to be, but it works out. Our ministry time is also a lot different than it was in Panama. All of our ministry happens in the afternoon/evening. So mornings are free. My system is also finally adjusting to all of the food that we’re eating here. AND no matter WHAT I do, I cannot get away from the bugbites!
We went to our first 2 ministry sites today. They were a great first run. We went to two different schools. I LOVE Indian children!!! They are probably some of the cutest kids I’ve ever met. We visited a couple of private schools & did our program. (program consists of a couple skits, song, bible story, and altar call) FOr some reason, I just couldn’t shake a feeling of oppression in these areas though. This made it a little bit harder to break into a proper mindset for ministry, but I know that whatever’s going on with me CANNOT interfere with the winning of sourls & the furthering of the kingdom. The gospel isn’t comfortable, and when you look at these people… these beautiful, fearfully, and wonderfully made cultural people, and see them the way that God sees them, you begin to realize that your comfort doesn’t matter. It’s the LAST thing that I’m worried about
July 17th 2010
Today we had our first REAL ministry site.
We went to an area called the Umbai district. This is an area with over 300,000 people who are primarily Hindu. Many have never even heard of the gospel. I wish that I could speak Tamil. I just feel like if I had someone who could translate everything I needed, or if we had the ability to just speak tamil miraculously, that this ministry would be that much more effective. I talked to a young Hindu man tonight. He understood what we were saying about the One True God, but couldn’t get past the ways of his country. “One God is America, many gods is India. That’s way it is.” is all he would say. It broke my heart, but I know that the seeds are planted. My prayers are with him.
We did ministry in the middle of the street in this village. This was our stage. We did our program & everybody seemed pretty entertained. As soon as the net happened though, spiritual warfare started up. All of the men started chattering, and the seamstress’s shop next to us started blaring Hindu music, and cars drove through the middle of the crowd, all distracting those we were ministering to, but despite the devil’s attempts, the Holy Spirit still claimed souls AND performed a healing of an old woman’s eye sight. God is so faithful!!!
July 18th, 2010
CRAZY ministry today!
We went to a small city, and as we were walking through the city, I kept seeing images of Ganesh, the half elephant, half human god. I just felt such a heaviness throughout the entire city. Walking through the village, I smelled incense burning everywhere. Incense is usually one of my favorite smells, but just knowing that it was a sacrifice made it burn my lungs, and made me sick.
Everytime I see an idol or anything resembling an idol, it hurts my spirit. Seeing these things brings a new meaning to feeling the heart of God.
I felt like our ministry was set up for just another nominal night of ministry because the majority of our audience was children, and the rest were already Christians from the area.BUT during ministry time, there was so much that happened: A mute child spoke his first word, Jesus, a blind woman saw, a deaf person was healed and… We cast demons out of a woman.
A woman brought her sister into the courtyard and said, “We need prayer for our sister.”
Here, it’s important to note that the one woman was christian, thus referring to ‘our sister’ as the body of christ’s sister (which happened to be her own sister). Because of this, we thought that they had another sister that wasn’t there, so we proceeded to ask what was wrong with her, not knowing that the woman she had brought was the one we needed to pray for.
We asked the one sister what she needed prayer for, and she said that they thought she had a demon because she would disappear in the middle of the night, and when they awoke in the morning, someone would be dead.
So we started to pray, and Selvi, the woman that was brought, started manifesting demons.
The girls of the team circled her and started praying, and the battle was on. I took a place on the outside of the women, since it’s not ok for men to touch women, even for prayer, in this culture. As we started praying, Selvi started convulsing and flailing, so the girls had to start holding her so no one got hurt. As we prayed, the demons would shriek & yell & try to get away.
After about an hour of praying fervently, being tossed back and forth by the attempts of the possessed woman to escape, losing my voice, and being directed by the Spirit of God, God finally set His daughter free. I feel as if there was at least 3 different demons in this woman. After it came to Selvi’s point of deliverance, we lead Selvi into the church, where she fell to her knees at the altar & began praying to the One True God, Jesus Christ. Slowly, Selvi’s hands folded & she said “Jesus”. That’s when we knew it was over.
I’m just SO in awe of the dramatic change that we saw in Selvi. Even her eyes brightened up after she was delivered and accepted the Lord.Her bindi was gone as well. The oppression of Hinduism was off of her life.
After talking to the Pastor afterwards, He said that this woman had been possessed for 3 years. He also said that the Hindu community said that if Selvi was delivered by the Christians, that they would start going to church & listening about Jesus. Guess what? She was delivered by the Almighty!!!!
God is so good & I am 100% in awe of what He can do!!!!
July 20th, 2010
(7-19 was a free day)
All day today, I could feel God stirring something awesome up for our ministry tonight. We waited around all day for our briefing on the area we were going to. FInally, the info came…
We would be going to an untouchable village that had NEVER heard the gospel before.
My heart perked up, this is an UNREACHED PEOPLE GROUP!
The pastor told us that they were called ‘untouchable’, because in Hinduism, everyone believes that there is a “Brahma(measure of god)” inside of everyone. This is where the caste system gets it’s different classes. The untouchable cast didn’t have any Brahma, and thus wasn’t clean to those with Brahma. So these people didn’t even really have any hope until their next life, which we know they’ll never get to.
The untouchables are some of the most dear people to my heart so far on this trip. NOBODY has ever shown interest inthem Nobody has ever bothered with them. They are also stuck under the oppression of the Hindu gods. What a hopeless situation!
I love the kids here. There were two little boys that stole my heart. I only wish that I could remember Indian names…they’re so complicated! haha.
These people were SO open to us & our messag, which made everything to do with ministry that much easier. When the time for the Net came near, hands shot up! My heart was jumping! I prayed for two guys to receive Christ, and a woman with a heart condition for healing, a little hirl and a deaf woman.
In the middle of the prayer for the deaf woman, Kass, our TL got everybody rounded up & in the vans as fast as she and Jared, our other TL could. It was a ‘don’t ask questions’ moment. As soon as everybody was back on the bus safely, we heard the news. There was a group that does ‘social work’ and keeps an ear out for christian groups & activity. There was a mob assembling as we were there, and they were quickly approaching.
As we were driving back to our base, I got a real sense of what it is to have a part in the persecution that the church here faces daily. We asked the pastor what would have happened if we hadn’t gotten tipped off, and he said, “I as the pastor would have been killed, the men in the group would have been beaten, if not murdered, and the woman would have been severely beaten as well.”
Wow. My heart is continually breaking over these people!!!!
July 21st, 2010
Ministry just keeps getting more and more intense. As we arrived at the ministry site, the spiritual atmosphere felt INCREDIBLY heavy. The area that we weree sent to was an area known for persecuting Christians. As a result of this, we were not allowed to give the net, however we were allowed to pray for people. So we went out & started praying for people as we usually did.
Soon, as I was interceding with Vivian for an older woman, another old lady walked over to me, hit me on the arm, held up her hands, and in tamil said, “Pray.”
I started looking around for a translator, and a boy named Veejay showed up. He spoke enough English to translate a little bit for me. The old woman said that her eyes & her legs needed prayer. As soon as I got done praying, the old woman bent over & touched her toes. I was thinking, “ok… what’s going on?” So I asked Veejay, “What is she doing? What’s happening?”
He then responded in his Indian accent (complete with headbobble, mind you), “Her back has become as rubber!!!”
I started laughing and asked what that meant. He told me that she couldn’t do that before. Her back was stuck straight, and she hadn’t been able to bend over like that in years. We then started praising the Lord.
As we got ready to go, Emily started to experience some spiritual attacks which took the form of excruciating pain in her stomach. We prayed for Emily until it gave up, but as soon as we stopped, it started attacking Briana. So we continued praying, I don’t think we even stopped until we got back to Oshi
July 22nd, 2010
Tonight, ministry was pretty great. There were TONS of kids and an opportunity for an altar call. I’m not sure of the number of salvations, but I DO know that a lame person got up and walked for the first time in their life. There was also a boy there that I definitely connected with. I don’t remember his name, but I will never forget his face, or situation.
He was not able to speak properly because when he was at a Hindu temple, as an act of worship, people were throwing a coconut around, and proceeded until it broke.
Well, this guy went in to the temple, and ate a piece of the coconut. As he did this, something went wrong. He got a piece of coconut stuck in his throat & it wouldn’t come out. Finally after a while of struggling, it came out, but not without the casualty of his voice. Now, he can make sounds, but he’s not able to make any words.
I prayed for him several times, but I couldn’t tell any difference, but I know God does work in them even after we leave. He will remain in my prayers…
July 24th, 2010
Tonight was awesome, yet sad as well. It started off as a surprise trip to the pastors’ church. There we had a thanksgiving service in which they pretty much gave us dinner & a ginger blob that was soaked in oil and wrapped in newspaper haha. O indian food. It was good none-the-less, though :).
Ministry was a little bit rushed. Everything was a little bit behind schedule, but God worked through us none-the-less. We had a small group of people, mostly children that gatherd outside of the church to watch the program. We put on this program in the middle of the street. The people that we meet are all so awesome. I’m going to miss all of them so much! Tonight was pretty great :), but it was also really sad, because it was our last night with Gletseal as our translator.
July 25th, 2010
The ministry today was great as well!!!
We went to a church with Priscilla, and Leo, and did a program for them which was followed by an amazing Holy spirit filled talk from Priscilla! It was awesome to see all fo the & be able to help out and encourage our Indian brothers and sisters!
July 26th, 2010
Today was a free day. We got to run around Tamil Nadu and see a lot of beautiful places. God did so many beautiful things in India. The forests of palm trees, amazingly beautiful rivers, the people… :).
We were also privileged enough to be able to visit pastor v’s village. We got to walk through the house that pastor V’s mother was raised from the dead in, and meet some of the people that Pastor V got to live life with.
We also took a trip to a waterfall, and walked across the 2nd largest bridge in Asia. 🙂 haha.
I can definitely check that one off of my bucket list now 😉
July 27th, 2010
I am so glad that there was only one of these, haha. We demolished a brick building and had to carry the remains of their soggy red-dirt bricks across the street, and dump them into another huge pile. It was long, hard work in the hot Indian sun, but I know that it was an incredible blessing to them! So it was all worth it.
July 28th, 2010
End of ministry is coming soon =(. This whole trip has been kind of surreal. We’re making an eternal impact and it’s so awesome! Today, we went to the Mission Voice Childrens’ Center. This place was a lot of fun, and the kids were amazing. We prayed for a deaf old man, but unfortunately, we realized he was too drunk to communicate with us, but we noticed that he started responding to us when we talked to him. I am believing and standing in faith that he was healed 100% even if he couldn’t confirm that haha. 🙂
July 29th, 2010
This was the STRANGEST day that we have had yet. Our site was in the only bare outcropping from trees in a mountain wooded village. Its inhabitancts were split into a christian part of town, and a hindu part of town. In this village, one of the guys in my MAG, Hunter, had a defining moment of the trip. He watched a woman run to the front of the group when the net was thrown, fall to her knees and weep as she began receiving prayer. That was one of the most awesome parts of this entire ministry.
July 30th, 2010
Last ministry day.
Today was our last day of ministry. It’s strange to thnk that in a couple of days, we’ll be back in the US. These beautiful, brown, smiling, head-bobblin’ faces will be missed SO much!!!!!!
These people have stolen my heart and I cannot get it back no matter how hard I try.
Today’s ministry was kinda strange, but definitely a good wrap up for the trip. We were chased away from our sight by anti-christian persecution again.
As we were beginning our last prayer session, pastor V was confronted by one of the elders of the village, and we were threatened with our well-being. So pastor V rounded us up and we all left, after taking a minute to get tea and cookies, though, of course! 🙂 haha. O India. God has a lot of work to do in that village, but I KNOW that He is faithful to complete the good work that He started!!! 🙂