03 February 2016 ~ Comments Off

E-Pray February 2016

Our dear e-pray friends,
Thank you, thank you, thank you! for praying for our trip! We had a wonderful trip, so full and so completely enjoyable! We were safe in our travels and for the most part healthy (sorry for a few team members who suffered a bit from various sickness) and we had really great interaction with all of those the Lord brought us to love and serve! And, we know, you and your prayers were a big reason for all! So, thank you, thank you, thank you, again!! /And, thank You, Lord!/ :)
We really love to share the team’s thoughts and stories with you, so you can hear it from someone else besides us sometimes! So we will be sharing from them for the next few months… It is always quite overwhelming to try to even begin to share everything… and one of our teammates captured this very well!

Thoughts from Cassidy…

This is the fourth day that I’ve been up, in the early morning hours, trying to write this email. This will be the fourth day that people ask about my time in India and I will feel like everything I say will sound empty and inaccurate. I want to tell people about my time in India, to describe the ministry, everything we do there, how it feels like we are part of something bigger. Yet I struggle to find the words.

But still people want to know: what do we DO there? How was it?

It was dirty. Hotels with cockroaches and cold bucket showers.
It’s loud. The constant honking horns or insistent chatter of people as they press into you.
We sit more than we’d like– waiting on Indian time.
The food is too spicy. Often I would try to fill my stomach with a crushed granola bar from the bottom of my pack.

And then in the middle of all that I would have a moment where a woman would recognize me, she’d come hold my hand and wrap her arms around me. She would talk in Telugu, pointing out her husband. Hand gestures of how many kids she has and measure how big they are with the height of her hands. She’d bring out pictures from her Bible to show me. And I’d bring out pictures of my own. We would see the same pride and love as we show off our families, we would smile at each other, promise to pray for each other. We would speak words, lost to translation. We would connect as two sisters in Christ. For a moment. And then it would end. I don’t know how to describe that when people want my neatly packed sentence of how my time in India was.

I didn’t DO anything. I didn’t work as a Nurse Practitioner. I didn’t save anyone, diagnose anyone. I didn’t walk away thinking how lucky the Indian people were that I came to donate my time. I didn’t create anything. I didn’t leave India with a lasting, tangible gift of my presence. I held hands. I hugged. I sang some songs. I blew a few bubbles. I learned some new games from kids. I practiced saying my numbers in Telugu over and over and over; coached from a gaggle of brown little faces. And I still didn’t get them right.

I came home feeling filled. Like spending the day with a friend, walking away full, but unable to articulate anything productive about the day.

I came home feeling like I was a part of a ministry. And I guess, from that, there are some things we could measure. If my counting is correct we visited 10 churches, 1 orphanage, 3 schools, 2 leprosy colonies, attended 2 pastors meetings, 2 gatherings for handicapped or outcasts, visited 1 widows home, and we put on our youth conference. The youth conference was actually extremely successful. Success was measured by adding up all my cynicism and skepticism, multiplying that by the power of your prayer and the presence of the Holy Spirit, resulting in an entire roomful of Indian young adults that heard our teaching on discipleship. Many seemed interested, listening attentively and taking notes. I pray the Holy Spirit spoke our words and it will result in better disciples of Jesus in India, capable of making more disciples.

It’s good to be home. I’m sitting on my comfortable couch. Enjoying the silence and drinking a delicious cup of coffee. Soon I will get into a hot shower. It’s good to be home. But it was wonderful to be in India. To see SERVE India’s ministry and be a part of something that works to glorify God in every aspect. To see Indian friends and the global church. Thank you for praying over these long months. For listening to my frustrations and praying. For reading my prayer updates and praying. For encouraging me and praying. India reminded me that I can’t DO anything, but the Holy Spirit and the power of prayer can. Thank you for praying.

Yes! Thank you for praying!
His joy, Love, The Nanda’s :)

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