she covers her head with her prayer shawl. her sari is perfectly pleated. her Bible, notebook and pen lay neatly stacked on the floor by her feet. she looks over the array of girls in front of her, counting each one. she has a mental check list: shoes at the door, matching salwar suits, dupitas draped for worship. all is in order. the chatter of children rises and falls this morning as believers enter and take their places.
this is the Lord’s day.
each child has a story. they range in age from 3 years old to nearly 20. some arriving at this orphanage before the life they come from can mar their memory. others learning here what it means to be set free from the darkness that encircles so many indian people.
this is a place of joy.
as the Pastor and his family enter, collective greetings erupt from smiling faces. each person in the room, adult and child alike, are acutely aware of God’s work in their lives through this faithful family. truly God planted a vision united by a bloodline. mummy and daddy, son and daughter-in-law daily press on toward the goal of the calling of Christ in this place.
this is purpose.
the word music doesn’t do justice to the praise of these passionate dark-eyed believers. spilling out into the dusty streets. beckoning the souls of all who hear to come and see that the Lord is good.
this is worship.
it is a welcome respite for this favored four. tomorrow will bring talk of their current state of affairs. the lease is up on mummy and daddy’s rented house. less than 40 of their 70+ orphans have consistent monthly sponsors. land that God provided sits a few hours away waiting for construction, buildings and the ministry to make its final permanent move to fulfill a God-given purpose.
this is opportunity.
many see this story unfold before them. the bright colors. the unique smells. the warmth of the indian sun on their skin. it changes people. experiencing God in a new and fresh way here…and then the many return home. muted colors, familiar smells, the chill of the winter replace the former and somehow it is forgotten.
this is life.
our calling is for more. He chooses each one for His purpose. no one exactly like the other.
and He personally gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, some pastors and teachers, for the training of the saints in the work of ministry, to build up the body of Christ, until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of God’s Son, growing into a mature man with a staturemeasured by Christ’s fullness. ….from Him the whole body, fitted and knit together by every supporting ligament, promotes the growth of the body for building up itself in love by the proper working of each individual part.
~ephesians 4:11-13 & 16 (hcsb)
this is the Church.
for more information on how God is calling you to be a part of His work in central india, please click here.