I just wanted to write a final blog on India before I switch gears to Uganda. An update on my friend segrive with the abscesses on his neck and armpit – The hospital we took him to decided they wanted to do some more blood tests of their own before they did any type of operation. In the meantime they went ahead and started him on meds for TB. The tests came back inconclusive. The medicine however has been working tremendously well and his wounds are drying and closing up. We are blessed to have a fellow aggie in India! He is going to be taking segrive to his other appointments and insuring his illness is treated well! Thank the Lord for him! He just graduated from A&M and will be working in Houston. He was born and raised in India and helped Sarah by delivering the Christmas presents to the orphanage last year when he went home on Holiday. He is not a believer but seems very curious, God is obviously working on his heart and we are blessed to have him as a contact.
Throughout our time there the amount of kids increased, some returning for school but many were new to Emmanuel Childrens Home. Our days went a little something like this- give or take an hour or so due to “India time” – (nothing ever happens according to schedule).
Our days started at 5:30 with morning prayer. The kids would then work on chores and brush their teeth while we spent time with the lord either individually or as group until breakfast was ready. Early morning/afternoon we would coordinate game time. We were all split into teams with the kids and we would switch off leading games. From about 11:30-4 it was far too hot to play many outside games (110-115 degrees) so we would color, play Indian games, do hair/nails, just talk and hangout with the kids. We also had afternoon prayer during this time. The kids were so faithful to do this prayer time, as no adult oversaw it. They would all gather, a few would lead some songs, an older boy would lead a prayer time, and then the kids would recite memory verses. Each prayer time ended with the Lords prayer. In the evening we would have another programming time which we coordinated. We took turns leading this time which consisted of worship, a skit, and a lesson. Then we would eat dinner, shower and go to bed around 9:30-10:30.
I loved the prayer times the best. The children there have so much joy! They continually pray for others and look for ways to serve us. They LOVE singing worship songs and playing games. The kids taught us a lot of songs, one of our favorites was “Jesus is the Winner Man” Which says, “Jesus is a winner man and satan is a loser man.. We are on the winning side”.
Their joyful, generous, faithful living was such an encouragement to me.
We took everyone to pizza hut one day and adventure island another day. All of the kids got dressed up and showered for pizza hut and loved the bus ride there (even though there was no AC). They put ketchup on their garlic bread and pizza, which was disgusting to us but hilarious. Adventure Island had a bunch of carnival-like rides, including swings, bumper cars, spinning rides, a log ride and a small water-park section.
Adventure Island was the best part of the trip to me. We had spent enough time with the kids to know them well and found such joy in their excitement – and they were so excited to share it with us! They would run up saying “Auntie Auntie!! Come ride this with me!”.
We also got to go see the Taj Mahal, which was beautiful! This was a fun time to reflect as a group and get in the AC and take a real shower, not a bucket bath! Our leader Sarah was proposed to at the Taj Mahal by her boyfriend Steven who joined us for the India leg.. She said yes!
When we got back to the orphanage all the kids came pouring out screaming YAY!! Auntie and Uncle are back! They were so so happy to see us and hug on us, it melted my heart. One of the older boys, Simon, said he had been waiting for us all day at the gate asking God when we were going to get back. I was really touched by that, I knew the little kids Loved having us there but to hear that the older kids/boys were missing us and praying for us to come back soon melted my heart and brought me to value my time here even more.
If the children choose to attend the Bible College after school they graduate signing a martyrs oath, saying unto death they will proclaim the gospel to their country. Some of the older boys were talking with my teammate Brian about the persecution in India. They showed him a video of a man being beaten for proclaiming Jesus. When Brian asked if this could happen to them they said it definitely would. They said some christians deny or don’t proclaim Christ to some Indian people in order to stay safe. The boys said they would NEVER deny Christ or not speak his name, they said they could never do this after all the things Christ has done for them. That hit me really hard; these orphans, the lowest of lows, cast aside by their family and society are so in love with and loyal to their savior. I began to see these kids as the future of India, as doers of the Word. God prompted me to start praying for their protection and their hearts, along with the hearts of the people they would encounter.
The Lord taught me a lot about simplicity and humility in India. I have been praying for simplicity and joy in the small things. I’ve also been praying for humbleness/selflessness; that I will think of others before myself and that I will serve others in a way that brings glory to God’s name, not my own.
I’m so excited to see what God has planned for Uganda. The Lord has always placed a desire in me to work with teenage girls/women and He has been reminding me of that desire a lot on this trip. I’m looking forward to seeing how he moves and what He shows me!
Sorry it took so long to get a blog up for India.. We were just now able to get to a place with Internet!
Thanks for reading and praying!