Trivia question: How does one go to a country full of poverty, people sleeping on the streets, and a list full of things one is not to eat or drink while there and not lose one stinking pound of weight?
Quick, what is it?
By eating Pizza Hut and McDonalds and drinking more sodas in 5 days than I've had in the last 3 months, that's how. Yeah, Pizza Hut 3 times in 5 days. We found the McDonalds this time. In a mall, of all places. You might know that cows roam the streets freely in India because they are viewed as sacred by the Hindus so you won't find a hamburger on the menu. Well, I think they say hamburger but it's a chicken sandwich. As for the sodas, I don't even drink Coke at home. If I'm going to drink any kind of soda it's usually Dr. Pepper. When we came off that roof everyday and someone extended a icy, cold Coke in my direction I did not hesitate to take it!
And why was I on the roof, you might be thinking. That's where the kids were and that's where the children's camp was held. It was unbelievably hot up there. It helped some when the fans were on. Which, by the way, was not always. I was glad to be there, though. The kids were great. I worked in crafts the 3 days we had with them. It was such a great privilege to sit down and craft with the girls we sponsor through my Life Group. They are so darling - my eyes are full of tears right now just thinking about them. I was absolutely drawn to them each day. I loved it how the kids said "thank you" when we passed out materials knowing full well that the only English most of them know are those 2 words and "praise the Lord." Well, I take that back. On the last night we were there we went up to the roof to practice with the kids (more on that in a bit) and take some pictures with them with their new uniforms. It just about put me over the edge when they sang "I Love You With the Love of the Lord" to us in English. That I didn't break down sobbing at the sound of their precious voices singing that song was only by the mercy of God.
We ended our time at the children's camp everyday by practicing for the kids to do something we call creative movement but is like hand motions to songs for the service at the conference on Saturday night. We did one song last year but this year we did two and Tracy brought strips of cloth for the kids to hold in their hands. The first song Tracy picked was "Revelation Song." She brought the Phillips, Craig, and Dean recording. First of all, it's a really great song. But, to hear PCD singing the words, "Holy, holy, holy, is the Lord God Almighty, who was and is and is to come" and to see the kids with their hands and faces lifted toward the heavens was... there's no word big enough... incredible... awesome... I don't know, it's beyond my ability to describe it.
So, I'll leave you with that for today. It's all I can stand. I won't eat pizza today or drink a soda or smile at kids because I don't speak their language and it's the only way I have to communicate with them. I won't be drenched in sweat or fall into bed exhausted because of the heat. I won't drive in a car for 45 minutes to an hour for the unspeakable privilege of sharing my life with those that love Jesus and are willing, if called, to suffer as a result.
I'll just be here, in my home office, thanking God for the great honor it is to go.
Serving the King,