So you may or may not know, but our tickets are booked, shots are next week, and we are eating curry regularly in preparation…. we are going to INDIA! For real. In January, I will be accompanying my dad from the UK, my husband, Lyndon, and my youngest son, Jacob, on this most amazing experience, and I can’t tell you how excited I am! *Major squeal*
It’s going to be a crazy ride, and we’re squishing our adventure into 8 days in the Hyderabad area, followed a 5-day recuperation period visiting family and friends in Wales. Why India? Why indeed. I’m confident this is a God thing, because it’s SO out of my comfort zone, and it was always one of my “I’ll never do that” things. Yeah, never say never…
Jacob’s dream. Not the Old Testament angels-on-the-ladder type Jacob dream, but my 15-year-old Jacob’s dream… to go to India. He’s been praying, working hard, and saving every penny to go on some sort of mission trip for about four years (I think he was beginning to question our “wait and see” responses).
Dad’s heart. My dad, who is a pastor in England, has had a passion for India (and curry) for as long as I can remember, and his Bible school pal returned to India some 30 years ago to start a church with 5 people. There are now over 3,000 in the congregations, and God is doing some extraordinary things with Gethsemane Ministries in Hyderabad. Dad is a regular visiting preacher, and is anxious to share with us the work of church planting in surrounding villages. It will be “rustic”. Very rustic…
Openness. God orchestrated this adventure from the beginning, and for me, it was a gradual “wooing” through the year. Glancing back at my blog in January, my word for the year was “open”. I even talked about Jacob’s desire to go to India, and said I wanted to be “open to go where God wants me to GO, and to do what God wants me to DO, and to write what God wants me to write.” I did, I said that! You can see for yourself here.
My yes. This summer, I was antsy and not entirely sure what the “next step” was going to be for me, but I knew God had something in mind… something that would probably take me out of my comfort zone. I said yes even before I really knew what I was agreeing to. This sparkly little book Rhinestone Jesus was a great encouragement to me:
“Are you settling for a shiny, pinned-on, ornamental faith? Get ready for one that’s messy, bold, and courageous.”
Honestly, I was a bit scared to start reading this book! The author, blogger Kristen Welch, was lulled out of her comfortable Christianity and took a huge risk for Jesus. Her story is incredible. She insists she is “just a mom”, but you seriously need to read about the work she is doing in Africa, and the lives God has impacted through her obedience. It was another nudge for me to say the yes.
Lyndon’s support. As always, my husband is my Prince Charming! His business is crazy busy, and only days before I mentioned the India thing out loud to my dad, Lyndon was trying to make sense of owning a business, yet not taking the time to do things that really make a difference. Like mission trips. He patiently listened to my heart and my ramblings, and after much conversation and prayer and planning, we know this is the time. And the place. He’s in.
So I’m not sure what our little family will do exactly, once we are face to face with these beautiful people. We want to encourage the churches, to drink in the whole India experience, to have our eyes wide open to see what we can do. There are churches, orphanages, widows, construction, stories, books, and children all floating around in my head at the moment, and I’m not sure which way is up. But God knows.
And I’m excited to see what transpires when we say the next YES.
Someone pass the naan bread… 🙂