How do I even start to describe what we experienced in our church today? First, we were about 45 minutes late because the “Chief Minister” which is like the Governor of the state was passing through in a motorcade which consisted of several SUV’s 2 Motor coaches and several thousand men on motorcycles. There were police everywhere which is the first time we’ve seen police in the city this week, and to be real honest with you, it was the first time I felt unsafe.
The campus here is an absolute haven of God’s presence and the peace of the Lord is all over this place. Anyway, so by the time we arrived at “the drop of f point” we (Matt, Nicole, and Ishana) jumped out of the bus and Johnson said to us, “Go with this man” and the next thing I know we are walking through like the smallest little “alleys” I have ever seen. They were amazingly clean, at least what I can remember of them.
I was seriously lacking peace at the moment. We end up in this 15’ by 30’ building where you can hear the sound of Indian Worship Music coming from within. I had to duck to make it through the 5 foot high door and when I lifted my hands, I could basically touch the ceiling. There were 30 adults and 20 kids in this building all sitting on the floor. They had us sit up front in the only chairs in the place to honor us.
As I sat down I was overwhelmed. The children were so amazing worshipping so intently. It was overwhelmingly powerful. I was about as far outside of my comfort zone as I can remember, and yet, the spirit of God was all over that place.
They took communion which was really cool and I completely improvised my message. I was going to preach on David and Goliath but instead I spoke out of Psalm 4 which their pastor read in Telegu (their language) earlier in the service. I just sensed God saying to me, “Matt, will you get over your fear, settle down and trust me?” So I yielded to the Lord and God said, “Just preach through Psalm 4, their pastor knows best what they need to hear today. So I did. And it was one of the most anointed, incredible messages I’ve given in quite a while!
At the end, we prayed for everyone in the room which was really cool. I prayed for the pastor’s baby that was born with Crossed Eyes and I couldn’t help but look at him and see my son Will, 8 years ago – who was also born with crossed eyes. All I could hear in that moment was Will’s eye surgeon say to us 2 years ago, “There is no reason, in this day and age, that any child should have to live with crossed eyes.” And yet, there I was starring at a child that, without a miracle will live with crossed eyes for the rest of his life. It makes me want to weep just thinking about it. I am believing for that baby’s complete healing.
This afternoon, I got to spend some time with 9 girls who are enrolled in the Christ For India program for girls. It’s a 1 year program where they learn to use MS Office, Word, Excel and PowerPoint. The ramifications for these girls is that they can now get a better job and consequently move up in their caste system which will give them a better life forever!!! What an incredible, beautiful group of girls. I can’t wait for you to see the video of them. They are just delightful.
Pastor Mark, Jim, and Millie traveled 4 hours to the church that Mark’s church in Estero, FL paid to have built last year. They were dedicating the building! Sally and Marguerite got to spend the morning having church with 200 children who live on campus! They both spoke and said it was incredible! At the end, Sally said there were several children weeping and crying and when she talked to the House Mother, she said it’s a miracle because these children have been attending the school but come from Hindu families. So this was the day that they were converting from Hinduism to Christianity!!! That’s truly miraculous!
We’re off tonight, and then we’re going to do a medical camp in the village tomorrow where we will see and treat several hundred people in a few hours time with the doctors who are on staff at the hospital here!!!
On Tuesday we are taking the tour of the city of Visaghapatnam (vi-shag-a-put-num) it will be our first glimpse of the Bay of Bengal and we’ll do some shopping. The ladies all had custom Saree’s made at a tailor shop in town and Mark and I had some custom pants and shirts done! Nice Indian Hospitality!
Thanks for praying for us, hope your weekend was well.
I miss NLC worship too. I listened to some of the worship songs we’re doing at church right now on my iPod this morning and actually said out loud, “I wish I could be at NLC to hear Arianne lead this song.” What a great church we have you guys. I really miss being at NLC today. But I got to preach in a church smaller than my garage and it was just as incredible! He’s truly a HUGE and AMAZING God!!!
I love you all,