We all rode an elephant! None of us can believe that we had this incredible opportunity. Teresa was giggling because she was so excited. The elephant also got excited and sprayed water all over Nathan, Sam, and Josh’s feet. Hadia and I were thrilled that we actually touched an elephant. It was a big, big treat. The ride lasted only minutes, but we will remember it the rest of our lives.
Last year as I arrived at the airport, a beggar greeted us and said, " Welcome to Great India." This is a great country, but it also has great problems. So many people suffer in extreme poverty. The streets are full of beggars, some were even maimed and crippled but their parents to make them better beggars.
There are big piles of trash on the sides of the roads and often we see women and children digging in them. Cows roam everywhere and eat from the trash. The streets are crowded with cars, brightly decorated trucks, ox carts, motorcycles, and auto rickshaws (small covered 2 seater vehicles that run on lawn mower engines). Everywhere, people are walking, some carrying unbelievably large burdens on their heads. Smoke fills the air and the sound of car horns never stops.
The streets explode with color. The Sarees and Chudiars (a long dress over pants) that the ladies wear are so colorful. They often are edged in gold patterns or shimmer with glitter or rhinestones. They are the prettiest clothes that I have ever seen. Teresa, Hadia, and I have all bought Chudiars and Sarees. When we wore them to schools one day, all of the student were delighted that we were dressed in their national dress. Even Sam and Nathan have bought the long shirts trimmed in gold and silver called Kurthas.
Many people’s homes are much like western homes except that the architecture is different. They are comfortable places and remind us of our homes. However, so many more people live in small, dirty places that look and smell like the worst slums you can imagine. They have less than nothing, but still material blessings are not their greatest need.
More food, a good home, or clean clothes, every child in every one of these places needs to know Jesus. Only Jesus can give them home in such a hopeless place. We do what we can to help, but all of us understand one big truth. This world passes away and eternity is forever. Our Indian brothers and sisters, many who have very little, also agree with this statement. Our heart’s desire is to speak to these children’s greatest need. We want them to spend eternity with Jesus and their terrible life here will not matter. We see an ocean of hurting children who live in darkness and cannot even imagine light. Please pray for us as we seek to share His love. Please especially pray for the children. Ask the Lord to show them mercy and call them to Himself.
Hungarian Bible School
Dave James, director of the Word of Life Hungary Bible School, is also visiting our friends Joy and Leela George. This morning he shared from John 11 about how Jesus allows his dear friends to go through one of the greatest tragedies of their lives so that Jesus could show everyone that he had the power over life and death. In revealing His power, Jesus showed who He truly was. More, in the kindness and tenderness that He showed Mary and Martha in the loss of their brother, Jesus demonstrated that he understands our grief.
As you can imagine, this sermon was close to my own heart. Every day, I praise God that the grave is not the end. Every day, I am comforted by the certain knowledge that Jesus cares for me. I ache to take every opportunity to tell these dear children that there is more to life than this life. Many will die so young. I ache for them to know that Jesus really cares. These are the same lesions that the Father sweetly writes on my own heart as I miss Mike.
Pray for India!
Auntie Linda for
Juggling Uncle Sam
(Our Indian Names)