Archive for March, 2013

Here is the church “facility” we taught in the early part of the week. We drove for two hours along poorly kept country roads to reach this village where the c2013-03-18 14.07.59hurch is located.

What you see in the pictures is the front of the pastor’s home. He has constructed a canopy over the “front porch” area, which is reality is the dirt yard in front of his house. Then he has wrapped colorful cloths around the posts to enclose it. He puts rugs on the ground for the people to sit on during the service. This is the sum of his church facility. Under the edge of the cloths on one side where it rides up a bit, we frequently saw the feet of goats or cattle passing closely by on their way to the pasture. Chickens wandered in during our lunch and prowled around the edges of the “room,” sensing that food would be dropped.

There was a six hen “flock” o2013-03-18 11.00.59f guinea hens that seemed to hang close to the house, though they ranged up and down the dirt road next to it looking for food. They were always together, moving in perfect tandem like a team of synchronized swimmers, sometimes even taking a dirt bath together between the the house and our parked car and kicking up a cloud of dust. Their “call” is more highly pitched than the2013-03-18 13.55.29 other chickens that were running about, and so all through the teaching, two days about 6 hours per day, I could hear this little group of six marching up and down, complaining or gossiping, or whatever their cackling means.

When you look at these pictures of the church facility, remember that this church is already discussing planting another church in the next village. Kind of puts my need for AC, PA systems, musical instruments, etc., into perspective…

Last Sunday I preached in an Assembly of God church in Nalgonda for the second week in a row. I am getting to know some of the eager faces in the congregation. I finished my sermon and was sitting on the floor on the rug on the men’s side of the room. There is usually about 30-45 minutes worth of activity after the preaching and it’s all in Telegu, the local language, so I rarely know what’s going on during this period.

Suddenly, the pastor was motioning to me and asking me to come back up to the podium. I didn’t have any idea what was happening, but I climbed to my feet and staggered back to the podium – sitting on the hard floor stiffens me up a bit. A woman, his wife it turned out, was bringing a small baby forward. The Pastor was asking me to dedicate their new baby to the Lord! Wow, what a blessing and an honor! I love dedicating babies anyway, but this was really special. So I placed my hand on the head of this beautiful three-month old and prayed a prayer of dedication over Samuel.

Yes, though it’s been a long trip, and I’m anxious to get home (leaving for home the 30th), I’m still having a lot of fun in the Lord!

Finally Taught in India

Well, I was trying to post on my blog last night, and the internet was spotty and taking me offline repeatedly. So, I finally got a clear signal and quickly posted the entry this morning. However, I forgot P1080466to put a title because I was hurrying. I guess this is the Lord’s sense of humor, or the Apocalypse (you choose), because when it posted, the title had been entered automatically by WordPress (my blog builder) as “666.” So I have fixed it. Apologies to all who thought I had gone around the bend in India for a moment. And I have to admit, sadly, that this title is not nearly as exciting or attention grabbing as the first. However, it’s 7 am here, and as many of you know, I don’t even wake up till 10, so exciting titles escape me at the moment.

We finally taught for the first time today [yesterday now] after a week in India. We have spent the time getting oriented and having some medical work done among the team. We traveled 55 km, which is about 35 miles, but it took us 2 hours due to road conditions. Lots of typical Indian cross-country sights.

There are many Hindu temples along the road, colorful and a bit Old Testament in the sense that this is real practicing idol worship. Sometimes in the big famous temples, they sacrifice so many goats at one time that the blood actually runs into the road and they have to make detours. I’m glad we are in the age of Grace. I am putting a photo here of the very popular monkey god. We saw him in his incarnation in the road today – that is to  say, we saw an actual monkey.2013-03-18 10.28.28

There are so many small, one-room temples along the road that you don’t notice them after a while. Some are colorfully painted and well kept. Others are very old and seem neglected or abandoned.

I will also put a picture of the church we taught in today. Notice the cloths stretched around poles for walls. It is the beginning of summer here, and it looks like it will be a hot one – they tell me temperatures reach a consistent balmy 118 degrees during the height of the summer in this district of India.

2013-03-18 11.01.10We will be returning for more teaching tomorrow, but will leave earlier to make up for bad road conditions – this slowed us down today and we were quite late getting there. Even on the far out country road, we are constantly dodging buses, trucks, motorcycles, and small, three-wheeled rickshaws crammed with up to 15 people. Also, cows and a lot of goats.2013-03-18 10.34.03

Images of India 2013

I arrived in Nalgonda, India on Saturday March 9 and am staying at the home of a pastor. Here are some of the images I am seeing.






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I was quite surprised and pleased yesterday during the worship service  to hear this unusual moment in African worship. I think it occurred because of some of the teaching I have given about worship and meditation in scripture. The speaker is Geoffrey, the former prison convert and pastor whom I have referred to before.

African prayer can be quite boisterous and often seems like one voice may be competing with another for volume. Here is an example of maturing prayer where the congregation is exhorted to meditate, which I have heard in no other church since I’ve been here, and the result was this very sweet worship moment that is  mostly silence. I think if you listen to the whole 2 minutes or so, you will be as impressed with the quiet presence of God, and you may have a worship moment as you listen. This was quite a different kind of sound in African worship, and again, I am deeply humbled.

Bujjowali Meditation 030313 2mins

Here is some more UgaCIMG0135ndan Worship. This is 11 minutes long, but I think it’s worth it. It gets better as it goes along. Note again, the only musical instruments are African drums and hand claps. You can get quite addicted to this. This means “There is no god like You, only You.” I believe that is a loose translation.

Bujjowali Worship Weywey 11 minsDrummers by the Door in Bujjowali Jan 2013

CIMG01872013-02-05 16.27.452013-02-09 14.58.39P10802682013-02-22 16.45.13Bugembe Christian Worship Center

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