Saturday, July 16, 2016

"A short time in presence, but not in heart..."

This is Becky from the CLCI team (Pastor Peter, Pastor Joel, Alex, Raven, and me) finally finding some time and trying to work up energy to contribute to the blog. We are just waking up to our fourth full day in India, and there have already been so many incredible experiences, I'm not sure where to begin! But those of you who know me from the 2013 blog know that once I do get started, I am bound to ramble here we go... :)

This is my second trip to India as a mission helper. I went in 2013 and worked with pastors and churches in the BELC. This time I will be with the CLCI, so I will have the blessing of meeting new people and seeing new places. I am thankful for the opportunity of being a mission helper for both church bodies in India!
I have been praying about and thinking about returning to India since the night I got on the plane to come back home in July 2013. So I felt no hesitation this time around when the time came to apply for this mission trip. God was saying GO, and I was ready to be sent back! Before my first mission trip, I had related much to Moses in Exodus 4, when he was feeling anxious and inadequate to fulfill the task that God was calling him to do. Now, as I prepared for my second trip to India, I found myself drawn to words of the apostle Paul in his epistles. I connected to Paul's feelings he describes in 1 Thessalonians 2:17: "But we, brethren, having been taken away from you for a short time in presence, but not in heart, endeavored more eagerly to see your face with great desire." Although I've been separated from the congregations in India by both time and distance, they have never left my heart or my prayers. After deeply longing to be with them again, to join again in fellowship, worship, and prayer with my dear Indian brothers and sisters in Christ, I cannot stop sending up prayers of thanks to the Lord for blessing me with this opportunity to return!

It is my hope that I can share with everyone at home the stories of your fellow Christians in the CLCI so that those of you who are following our journey through the blog and supporting this mission through your prayers, donations, and encouraging words can get at least a glimpse of the joy, hope, and love that we experience when we work alongside our beloved brothers and sisters in India. Thank you for your prayers for our work! To God be the glory!

I will write more later, we are off to another city this morning! All is well so far with our team! :)

- Becky