Monday, June 17, 2013

From Thailand to India

We closed out our training in Chiang Mai and are quite pleased with the results. We are not sure how the pastors in the denomination will feel about being trained by their peers, but the men we trained seem enthusiastic to pass the training on. We had a great meeting with the president of the church and he talked about some of the significant things he had learned in the training. He said he had never really understood how the death of Christ displayed God's justice and mercy, and that he had never really understood why the church was called the bride of Christ. I was particularly interested in that since I had been wondering how well I had done in presenting that material. It seemed the Lord wanted me to hear that bit of encouraging news. 

Our trip to India was tiring. Our plane was delayed in Mumbai for about an hour due to monsoon rains that began falling a week or so ago. Travel in India is often frustrating. On our trip, the plane from Bangkok was filled mostly with Indians. I had to think about the differences between Thailand and India and the effect it has on us. Thailand is very pleasant to us and India is difficult. The cultures are so different. We love the Indians we work with, but have not grown to love India. I decided I need to ask the Lord to give me a love for India, the same one He has. My first step will be to talk more positively about our experiences here rather than focusing on all the things that trouble, frustrate or grieve us here. I would appreciate your prayers in that regard.

We met our training partners from Illinois today and had a great time with them. We look forward to working together with them. Tomorrow, Monday, we meet with the bishop of the diocese here of the largest church in India. He is interested in what we are doing and may want us to begin training his pastors. This could be significant since this church has tens of thousands of churches across India and is in decline. If their pastors began to study the Word, it could make a significant difference across the country.

On a personal note, my back has not caused me any problems so far and I am getting along quite well with standing all day barefoot on tile or concrete floors (you cannot wear shoes in Thailand or India while indoors). Thanks for your prayers for my health. Edie is getting along fine with the recovery from her sprained ankle also.


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