Click here to hear about Derry's perspective.
Wow, what a trip! I believe this has been one of the best trips I've been on. Normally when we go on these trips I usually work with children (This is fine, I love children). When we go on IMPACT trips with our students the majority of the time I am working along side our students to make sure they are getting the most of their opportunity (I love seeing students come alive about other cultures.)
But this trip was different! This was the first time my passion for students and my passion for missions collided. The outcome: OUTSTANDING!
Here are some of the stories:
The girl on the left, I can't remember her name--too hard to pronounce, came up to me on the 2nd to last day balling. She told me that her father has cancer. She said to me, "He's a good person, why has this happened?" My response, " I don't know". I can only imagine the fear that is going through her mind. Cancer is scary enough in the US, but in India, many of them cannot afford the treatment needed to prolong life or wipe out the cancer completely.
The girl on the right is Luma. She came to me and told me that her family is hindu. It was hard to understand through translation, but what I understood was she lives in some sort of a compound. All of the girls are locked in this compound and are not allowed to leave. There are only 5 christians in that compound. All of them but her wear the Hindu threads (this is a big deal). She said that her brothers( they are hindus) often lie to her father telling him that Luma has done things that she has not. The result...Luma is beaten. She has talked to her father explaining that she hasn't done these things. His response...Stop being a christain and they will stop. Luma's response...I will follow Christ. If God asks me to leave, I will follow him.
I believe Luma is called to something great. Even before I met her I noticed that God has his thumb print on her. The thumb print of ministry.
The little girl on the far right was precious. Everytime she came into the tent, she would pray. Many times when God was moving in the lives of the youth, tears would stream down her face. She was so precious and had the largest smile. She really spoke to my heart. Just check out this picture as well. All 4 girls hold hands and pray...it makes my heart melt.
"The Game Girls". The girls kept me laughing. I taught all of the girls some games and they went crazy with them. They played them often and usually roped me into the mix. Most indian girls are quiet and shy...not these girls. They cracked me up on more than one occasion. The game girls are from the Hindi Fellowship at Hastings Chapel. Hastings Chapel is in Kolkata (Calcutta). They have 3 different services (or fellowships). English, Hindi & Bengali. Hindi is the biggest fellowship of 500 people. They brought 40 youth to this event. As Derry and I talked we came to the conclusion, they are the Indian version of our NMC students.
Sweety! Sweety is a nickname that was given to her when she was in the hospital as a young girl. Sweety is the daughter of David, someone I connected with in January. Sweety was the first person I met that spoke english. She lived up to her name. Very sweet, very bold, very accepting. She will be missed.
Priyanka & Pinky, the girls I connected with the most. It all started on the first evening. Caleb gave an invitation and Pryanka (on the right) was the first one to respond. As soon as she did, a flood of people came forward. She led the charge. I went up to her afterward and talked with her and this began the relationship with her and her sister Pinky( on the left). So many stories I can tell and will probably tell later. They touched my heart in a huge way.
India in a nutshell. If you want to know more, please come talk to me and I would love to share.