Sunlight picture

Sunlight picture
Some of our hostel girls gathering for a picture at sunset. "For God, who said, 'Let light shine out of darkness,' made His light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of God's glory displayed in the face of Christ" (2 Corinthians 4:6).

Wednesday, March 25, 2015


During a time of reflection tonight with the Lord, I began imagining what it will be like to walk through the little village in Tamil Nadu again, to see the children's precious faces, to hear their infectious, boisterous laughter, to watch them romp and roam. Vivid images of the children appear in my mind's eye -- it’s as if I can touch them even now. How amazing to really be face to face, to really hold them in my arms!

“Children are a gift from the Lord; they are a reward from Him” (Psalm 127:4, NLT).

In the midst of hundreds of India photos on my computer, I stumbled upon some videos I had taken of the children during my 2011 trip. The moment their laughter pierced the speakers, my heart awakened to dear old memories. The sweet, childish voices chattering and bickering in Tamil instantly brought me back to that place.

Then comes a realization. This is what I’ve been waiting for, praying for, longing for: to be reunited with these beautiful, remarkable, inimitable Indian girls and boys, whose hearts will always be a part of mine! It’s been 4 years since being in India and it still moves me to tears to watch the children play, dance and sing on video. They are so lively and full of personality, like blossoms bursting in spring. How I love them! How I’ve missed them!

The little ones will no longer be little -- how sweet to see how they've grown. Many of the cheery faces to greet me will be unfamiliar ones, since new batches of children arrive at the Home each school year. Exciting to think of brand new possibilities, opportunities and relationships. I can't wait to see what God is going to do!

Sometimes it completely boggles my mind to think that I’m really traveling back to India to minister to these children. It humbles me and brings blessing beyond measure. God is so so good! All the praise and glory goes to Him always! He has been faithful in providing and I just want to continue trusting Him. Where He leads, by His grace, I will follow.

“All the way my Saviour leads me
What have I to ask beside?
Can I doubt His tender mercy,
Who through life has been my Guide?
Heavenly peace, divinest comfort
Here by faith in Him to dwell
For I know whatever befall me
JESUS doeth all things well!”

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Mission Minded

Today I was greatly encouraged by this beautiful little passage, Luke 5:1-11:

"On one occasion, while the crowd was pressing in on Him to hear the word of God, He was standing by the lake of Gennesaret, and He saw two boats by the lake, but the fishermen had gone out of them and were washing their nets. Getting into one of the boats, which was Simon's, He asked him to put out a little from the land. And He sat down and taught the people from the boat. And when He had finished speaking, He said to Simon, 'Put out into the deep and let down your nets for a catch.' And Simon answered, 'Master, we toiled all night and took nothing! But at Your word I will let down the nets.' And when they had done this, they enclosed a large number of fish, and their nets were breaking. They signaled to their partners in the other boat to come and help them. And they came and filled both the boats, so that they begun to sink. But when Simon Peter saw it, he fell down at Jesus' knees, saying, 'Depart from me, for I am a sinful man, O Lord.' For he and all who were with him were astonished at the catch of fish that they had taken, and so also were James and John, sons of Zebedee, who were partners with Simon. And Jesus said to Simon, 'Do not be afraid; from now on you will be catching men.' And when they had brought their boats to land, they left everything and followed Him."

Jesus' love and compassion for the people He ministered to is so evident. It says "the crowd was pressing in on Him" -- they were spiritually hungry, desperate, and with longing hearts -- and He immediately responded by teaching them. Jesus wanted to communicate truth because truth sets free. Jesus, who loved them, who perceived the fallen condition of their hearts, was sent "to proclaim liberty to the captives" (Luke 4:18). His healing and redemptive work began with words of life, words that sliced through their inner darkness. But He didn't stop there. He proved his credibility by demonstrating His power in a very real and tangible way. "Put out into the deep and let down your nets for a catch" -- in other words, "Now that I've told you what I can do for you, step out in faith and take hold of it." Truth itself is meaningless unless apprehended. It is a call to action. I love Simon Peter's response: "Master, we toiled all night and took nothing! But at Your word I will let down the nets." What a wonderful demonstration of faith! Peter took Jesus at His word, despite the fact that the fish weren't biting. The result was overwhelming blessing: a miraculous catch of fish that caused their nets to break! Isn't that just how our Lord Jesus works? We come to Him with a tiny seed of faith and He explodes all proportions with His love and faithfulness.

Oh how we need Him. And He wants us to need Him. The more we need Him, the more of Him we have. We press, we ask, we lean, we trust, we plead, and His mercy reaches us succinctly in our hour of need. Then we are "astonished." We wonder, "Can this be?" I can just picture Jesus laughing joyfully, saying, "Yes, yes My child, this is really true. This is really how I work. This is really how good I am. Oh, this is just the beginning! Come. Come with Me, and you will see greater things than these!"

Jesus sets us free from our past -- our sins, our failures, our feeble attempts at life, our banged-up fishing boats -- to live a radically glorious life in Him.

I for one, do not want to miss it! This theme is deeply personal. God has recently been tearing down strongholds and healing pain in my life. Scripture tells us to "hold fast what is good" (1 Thess. 5:21). Jesus has shown me that the life He desires me to live is not at all connected with the things that had previously held me chained. Where His Spirit is, there is freedom. 

 I'm guessing but I think that this opportunity to return to India could not be more timely. As the Lord teaches me to walk forward in His freedom, He is literally taking me on a new journey. What a gracious and loving Heavenly Father He is.

Jesus' words, "Do not be afraid; from now on you will be catching men," is a wonderful affirmation of His leading on this mission. No longer stationary but propelled by His Spirit, He equips me -- weak and small though I am -- to do His will. I want to take this passage as my own, and see that miraculous catch of fish as the harvest of souls the Lord wants to reap in India. Not that this particular mission is singular in reaching that end, but I pray I can somehow be a part of God's work in rescuing these children, turning them from darkness to light and touching them with the love of Jesus. To Him be all the glory!

"For it is God who works in you, both to will and to act in order to fulfill His good purpose" (Philippians 2:13).