Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Shopping and Worshiping

We finally got some much needed rest on Saturday. Worked on our lessons and went shopping for Harry some clothes. Harry shipped the materials for the drip irrigation gardening we are teaching and decided to just go ahead and send his clothes in the boxes as well. This freed him from having to check bags at the airport and train stations, but the boxes didn’t arrive when they were supposed to. In fact, I’m writing this on Tuesday and we just found that the boxes have arrived in Rajahmundry.

He's sporting a hat worn in Hindu weddings
 Many different styles
The clothing store where our hosts took us was modern nestled in between older structures and a huge Hindu temple. It had valet parking, a door man, they brought us tea (hot kind with milk and sugar) while we shopped, had about three attendants assisting us, and the store was similar to a Kohls or JC Penny. A pair of designer jeans is about 1799 rupees or $40 bucks. I plan to buy Debbie a saree there and then get Elizabeth to show me how they are worn. Elizabeth is brother Rao’s wife and she keeps us well fed and looked after while we are staying with them.  Instead of trying to describe a saree, I just include a picture.

Sunday morning was another lesson on “Indian Time.” Worship is at 10 am. You would think that you should be sitting and ready for the services to begin at ten, but we were just then eating breakfast! What I discovered is that 10am was only an approximation for worship to begin. Someone will begin singing through the PA system, which has speakers attached to the second floor of the structure, so everyone will know it’s time to come and worship the Lord. We finally began the announcements with only about half the congregation present. All the time, worshipers are filtering in and taking seats. By the time the preaching started the building was full and spilled out the doors to the walkways. The children of the Home all sat together in front of me.

Harry delivered a great sermon, as usual, and I presided over the Lord’s Table. Our Indian brethren are very knowledgeable of the scriptures and often speak the scriptures aloud with the preacher from memory. They place a lot of emphasis on memorization and it shows in their teaching, preaching and faithfulness. They have a zeal for studying God’s Word and love a good sermon.

After the last prayer Harry was asked to pray for several people with different requests. Some want children and haven’t conceived others are suffering from ailments. One family wanted to dedicate their teenage son to the Lord because he had leukemia and God healed him so today he is cancer free. Harry prayed a powerful and eloquent prayer for this family and their demonstration of faith. Brother Rao also answered a request to pray for a couple’s new baby, blessing the child and dedicating their child to be raised to love the Lord. We all say we believe in prayer, but these Christians will be the ones to show up to a prayer meeting for rain with 
umbrellas. They are true believers!

We were then asked to sit for a program with the children of the Fred O’Neal Children’s Home. Brother Rao began with a complete history of his relationship with Harry and how the school and Children’s Home came into existence. Several of the children recited memory verses and told their name and what “standard” (grade) they are in school. Then they sang us some action songs! I have all of this on video and I will separate it into three videos.

The congregation that meets here is 400 strong and has to worship at different times to accommodate everyone. What a great problem to have!

While watching the children sing and act out their little song I thought how wonderful it would be to have our Sunday school children sing with these children. I think there is a way. I have been usung Skype to talk to folks back home and they have internet here. I thought we might make a connection on a Wednesday night at 7:30pm, which is 7:00am here and the children can meet and sing together. Just an idea, but I know there is someone who can figure it out and make it happen. Isn’t’ that right Matt!? LOL!!!
 Gotta go for now. The lectureship on John started yesterday and I will post how it is going soon.


  1. That sounds like such a great idea!!!! I got a saree while I was there and then we were having "wear your best Indian clothes" to work day and I wanted to wear, but I could not figure out how to make it work again. I even watched a you tube video while doing it. Maybe it will be easier if I'm helping someone else, so if Debbie needs help let me know!!

  2. Oh Tim!! This is sooo awesome! The children are ADORABLE and PRECIOUS. Do they not have parents? awwwwww :( I finally got your blog addy and SAVED it. I loved hearing you laugh in your videos! I know Debbie misses you like crazy :( Sounds like everyone is being blessed and ya'll are having great times with your friends there. Love the way you described one baptism.."we moved the frogs out of the way" haaaaaa! As for us here...more snow! Enough to get us another snowday tomorrow...but not all that much. Take care and stay safe! Love ya!! Donna