GOD DOES THE IMPOSSIBLE
We did a show today that no one thought would be possible. We were at a school that we were told would not allow us to come. However, they did let us come and gave us over 400 children to watch the show. When we arrived, the principal originally allowed us 20 minutes. I prayed and pleaded with him and we were given 40 minutes. Before we finished he was so happy that he no longer cared how long we took. There were Muslim and Hindu children in the crowd as well as some from a Christian tradition. God poured His Spirit on our time with these children.
The Hindu teachers came to see me to personally thank me for the program. Even the Muslim children were so happy with what they were hearing. Hundreds of children called on Jesus, asking Him to be their Savior. As they began to pray, they prayed so loudly that their voices drowned out all the competing noises. Since they attend a Christian school, they will have every opportunity to learn more about how to walk as a believer. The principal and many teachers wanted me to promise that we would come every year. When we arrived in this place we were told that the schools were closed to us for many different reasons. Now, we are being offered more opportunities than we can take. Still, we really need you pray that God will hold open the doors for us to go into the schools.
Tomorrow, Tuesday, is a Hindu festival day and all the schools are closed these students. Ask God to make us good teachers. Ask the Father to give them receptive hearts and minds.
PLANES, BUSES AND CARS
It has taken us what seems like an eternity to reach Kerala where we are planting a new team. The journey required 2 airplane flights, a lot of time in the car, and finally a long bus ride. We were forced to leave the Hosur area a day later than originally planned because there were no night bus tickets available. I am pleased to report that we have arrived and begun our work. On Sunday morning, we were on the top floor of a church under construction. We had no walls, but no one cared. I told the children the story of Goliath and how no problem is too big for God. Climbing on a chair, Sam did a great job of playing the big, bad giant. A little boy played David. After David killed Goliath, I asked the children who was the hero of the story. They all shouted, “David”. I answered, “No, God is the hero of the story. God can do anything.” Please pray that these children will find deep faith in the one true God and His Son Jesus Christ.
IDOLS AND LIES
Idols are everywhere. Images of elephant gods dangle from the rear view mirrors in cars. Images of many false gods are carved over the doorways of homes. We see many temples, filled with grotesquely carved and brightly painted gods and goddesses. It is at first exposure an overwhelming darkness. Only conversation with our Father brings light.
Yesterday we were in a traffic jam created by an enormous temple procession. Young men and older men carried 10-foot tall decorated giant cones on their heads. They would spin and chant and many were dancing in the streets. As the cones spun, the colored tinsel attached to them flashed in the sunlight. Everyone seemed so happy, but it was all a lie. These images made of stone have no power to rescue anyone. They foster hope, but their reality is deep emptiness.
WHAT IS HOPE?
I sat next to a young Hindu businessman on the plane to Bangalore. I asked him where he placed his hope. He answered, “What is hope?” I talked with him about how I find my hope, place my trust in the One I serve, Jesus Christ. After a couple of minutes of quiet, he answered, “I put my trust in my hard work, my family and this god.” He pointed to a golden image on his ring finger. I said, “Does your god answer you when you are in trouble?” Again, he was quiet and finally answered, “Well yes, yes he does.” He did not sound convincing.
I said, “So, how does he help you with your sin problem, the fact that you are a bad man who needs help?” He quickly answered, “I’m not bad, I’m good.” I said, “I work with AIDS kids in Africa. I’m not good.” He said strongly, “No, you are good.” Then God sweetly opened the door for me to explain to him about our problem, sin, and God’s solution, Jesus.
Please pray for this man and all those who were dancing in the street yesterday to discover the reality of the one true God and His Son Jesus Christ. We could see the darkness in their eyes as they pressed around the swirling cones. Ask God to send great light to this place, to flood their souls with His hope. I pray that this awakening will begin with the children.
I love elephants! Our friends here in Kerala gave us a sweet treat yesterday when they took us to an elephant park. I could stand in one place and see more than 20 elephants at once. It was amazing! My favorite part of the trip was when they brought an elephant over who had just had a bath and let me pet him. His skin was so cold and tough and it made me marvel at the creation of our Father. I felt very small standing beside the elephant. I also feel very small when I think of how big an opportunity God is giving us here in India. There are millions of children living in darkness here and we have the privilege of telling some of them about Jesus. Please hold us in your prayers.
We are currently staying at a Christian orphanage associated with a Bible school, Rehoboth. Tonight, the 200 children who live here will be given a feast as a gift from the local people. This is a widespread Hindu custom, people offering food to one another to mark significant events in their lives such as the passing of a loved one or an anniversary. They sometimes come here with food to ask for prayers for their dead. Our friends will not accede to this request, but offer to pray for the people who come asking. Tonight, the family that is coming have a special place in their heart for this orphanage. Their mother grew up here and they are actually believers. We will have the privilege of doing a puppet show. I can’t wait to see what the Lord will do.
Padraig, Sam and Anna