Friday, July 31, 2009
I have asked everyone to contribute their final thoughts to the blog...so check back soon.
Thank you for all your prayers!
Tuesday, July 28, 2009
After an offer from British Airways to receive $500 each to take a later flight to London fell through...we arrived in London, put luggage in storage, exchanged money, took the underground to the station nearest our hostel and checked in.
We plan to take a walk across Green Park to take a quick look at Buckingham palace and then a stroll across Hyde Park for an evening meal of fish and chips. And then a good night of sleep.
The Lord has once again blessed this Mission Helper effort to spread the Gospel as we have given and received even more encouragement in the faith.
Please pray for a safe and un-eventful trip home.
Sunday, July 26, 2009
As we near the end of the trip, I really feel myself getting more and more anxious to go home and see my family and friends again. I suppose this is only natural. But I am praying that the Lord would help me and all of us helpers stay focused til the end, because who knows if we're going to get an opportunity this incredible again?
While I hope that I can come over here again, I can't count on it, and I really just want to make the most of every moment that I have with my fellow Indian brothers and sisters. They are such incredible people! I pray that this program continues, whether it be trips to India, or to one of the other countries where we have missions developing. It's such an amazing opportunity to see firsthand the work that the Lord is doing!
I am so behind in writing things down – So much happens every day that it is difficult to keep up : ). Today was our first time of spending all day at the orphanage we had sooo much fun!!We made plaster of Paris figures for the kids to paint, played ball, duck duck goose, musical chairs, sand songs, and ran our little hearts out! The children are so loving and full of energy. Already we love them so much. We also had a very fun visit with Pastor Nireekshana, his wife Anne, and their little girls Prasasthi (Blessy) and Pradeephi (Mahnsy). Then we (Pastor Jyothi, Pastor Nireekshana, Peter, Pastor Matt, Katie + 2 of Pastor J+N’s nephews plus several others including faithful Barnabas – he is a very short slender man who is always doing something for someone) took off for the next village. As usually we were instant celebrities with all the dear little ones, who crowded around as we began the delightfully frustrating and sometimes hilarious task of communicating : ). It took probably an hour or two for the men to get the electrical system working so that we could show our Bible picture slides. One man had to climb up the electrical pole to rearrange the wires – they are so brave! After they got the electricity going it began to rain, so we all went inside and Peter showed the children the pictures that he had taken of them up on the big screen. It was so funny to watch them point each other out and laugh and then giggle in embarrassment when they own picture came up. The service went well except for when during the singing Peter happened to point out an innocent little gecko (hanging from the coiling) to Katie, who screamed. The children quickly caught on to the fun and kept pointing during the service to make sure Katie knew exactly when and where a gecko sighting occurred.
When the orphanage children returned from school we had lots more fun together. It is wonderful to be with them, but a little bit sad too because each one is so precious, and so in need of individual attention and love and I just wish we could keep them all! But God is doing wonderful things in their little hearts and lives and I am so glad that they are able to be at the orphanage. Several times I would play kick the ball with some of the little boys and a couple of times I accidentally kicked it so hard that it went up on the flat roof of the two story seminary and we all had to go tearing up the steps to retrieve it. One little boy though (he was about my favorite but I never got a handle on his name) would always come dashing up with his highly infectious smile , ball in hand, yelling “Sistah, Sistah!” and make fantastic gyrations with his leg, telling me in as plain of English as I have ever seen to send the ball back to seminary!
We had such a wonderful time at VBS tonight. The children are so energetic and eager to soak everything in especially the psalms. How I wish my own heart was always so open to my heavenly father teaching, and so humbly willing to learn. The service was out in the open air tonight – no geckos on the ceiling! But then during the service it began to rain. It looked as if we were going to have to pack up and leave, and Barnabas and I were trying to dehumidify the projector with an orange towel. The people all began to get up and leave and we were busy praying that the rain would quit. Suddenly Pastor Jyothi thundered, “Sit Down, Sit Down, the rain is going to stop!” and it did. The Lord is good, and we were able to finish the service just fine. After the services the people always come crowding up to us, saying, “Pray, Pray!” And wanting us to lay our hands on them and pray for them. It is such a precious thing to see – the friendly little girls, their dark faces framed by their best hair ribbons, coming first, the bare foot little boys coming shyly after, and finally the gentle and worn faces of the older people. It makes me feel so ashamed because of the elevation they give us, since I know my own heart, but I am honored by their love.
Another day that we got to spend playing with the children, and also visiting with the ladies. Lakshmi, Suranhukumari and Pastor Jyothi are teaching us a song to sing in Telugu.
Tonight was a very special night. There were many people at the service. And Pastor Jytohi told us there were Hindu people there as well as Christian. We are praying to our Heavenly Father that His word will, according to His promise, not return to Him void of the precious fruit of repentant hearts.
Right now it is about 5:00pm and we are on our way to Ongole. Sweetie is deriving our vehicle with Pastor Jyothi, Jack, Pastor Matt, Katie and me. Barnabas, Tinto, Tinko, and some others are following in another car with our luggugage. We are stopped at a railroad crossing to wait for a train. Barnabas and Tinto got peanuts at the little stand and our amusing themselves by placing peanut shells on the windshield of the car just out of reach of Tinko’s windshield wipers. They are so funny! We are on our way again now. Pastor Matt is hanging out of the window of our car taking pictures, and Tinto is hanging out the window of their car taking pictures of Pastor Matt : ). We stopped to take some pictures over a bridge and now as we drive there is a mountain looming in front of us. It is very beautiful.
This morning was our last morning at the hotel in Guntur, and our last time with all of our special new friends in Nidubrolu. It is hard to say goodbye to everyone, because I don’t know for sure if I will see them again until heaven. It is amazing how close you can become to people of a different culture, background, and language in just a few short days. The common faith in our Lord Jesus and the love of Christ in our hearts is a very strong tie. We just made it to Ongole, so I will write more later!
Savior!!! This is probably the biggest thing that I will miss. Hearing the "Hallelujahs" and the "Praise the Lord" when telling these wonderful stories.
Today we went and saw another Hindu temple. This is always sad, and makes me realize the incredible need for the Gospel here in India. Seeing these idols which can do absolutely nothing, makes me ready to proclaim the blessed news of our Savior! There are too many people here who have no knowledge of this blessed hope, and need to hear this message. So please pray that God's Word will reach all corners of India, and that more of God's children will come to faith!
Us girls sat in on one of the teaching session one of the days where all these young Pastors are so eager to be taught. As Pastor was teaching I could feel the Lord's presence very strongly...I know He is here. I look for Him daily and see Him at work every where we preach and teach. I thank the Lord for giving me strength to teach His word.
The children are wonderful to teach. They welcome us where ever we go in Jesus name. The Mission Helpers are covering a lot of places being split up into teams. The days consist of a lot of traveling but it is definitely worth it. His words will definitely not come back void.
Seeing our Indian brothers and sisters is awesome. I would never trade this experience. The pastors of the BELC are so with the Lord they talk enough English so that we can talk quite freely. They make sure we have plenty of bottled water and food and their wives seem eager to cook for us. They give us very large portions more than we can eat.
Well it is time for me to get ready for Pastor Ohlmann to return to pick us up to teach. Keep us in your prayers, they are definitely being heard and are in action.
Your Christain Sister Jackie
Thursday, July 23, 2009
Oh What a Night!
July 21, 2009
And not the late September type, either.
The day started routinely enough. At least routinely enough for a group of American’s in a fairly good hotel in the midst of a relatively normal sized (1,000,000 pop) city in India. We went out to the orphanage where I was teaching on the journeys of Paul, (I made it as far as the stoning of Stephen) and Katie and Dorena played with the kids. Later at night found us sitting in the dark of a remote village as we waited for the villagers to gather so we could begin our VBS program. We had already taught the lessons four or five times and we were starting to feel like we had ironed out all the wrinkles. But there is no place like an Indian village for expecting the unexpected.
About an hour till show time, Pastor Jyothi turned around and motioned for me to move close to where he was banging out Indian beats on a keyboard. This is when he informed me that it would probably be good if my part of the VBS program was more of a sermon. He went on to explain that most of what we were doing was all focused on the kids and many of the adults would feel left out unless there was a sermon for them. I had been teaching on the Incarnation of Christ. So I asked, “You want me to just teach the same thing, say the same things but make it sound like a sermon.” “Yes!” Well okay I thought that’s easy enough.
Half an hour later Jyothi motioned to me to talk to him again. It would be good, he told me, if you would go last, do you think Katie could do your lesson and you could end the program with a sermon. Kudos to Katie she agreed right away without hesitation to take both my lesson and her own (the crucifixion and resurrection) but that left me with about 20 min to get together a sermon that tied together and wrapped up the entire story of man and God, creation, flood, incarnation, crucifixion, repentance, and final judgment. It was at that point where I decided, “Lord, this is one is all you, there is nothing I can do.” It’s kinda of a freeing thought to realize the thing you are about to do is entirely in the Lord’s hand, there was no way of knowing and thus no way of preparing for this task.
The Lord of course came through; I immediately thought of Isaiah 42 and used it to preach “Who is this hero? And what did he do?” The sermon I think was going very well, when about half way through, it started to rain ever so slightly. My laptop was sitting out near the projector and I was a little worried about that but more so about the people who were being distracted by the slight drizzle. Then the rain picked up just a bit more. Still nothing to worry about but the villagers began to look up. Then just as I was explaining a “bruised reed” the rain picked up a bit more. A couple of things happened all at once. Neerickshena, sitting on the sidelines told me to finish up, the villagers began to get up to scatter to dry places, but Jyothi who was translating told the people to sit down God will take care of the rain. The villagers listened, sat down again, and just like that the rain was gone. After that I finished the sermon wrapping things up with verse 6, “as a light to the Gentiles,” as a picture with a cross superimposed over pictures of the villagers we had taken earlier was displayed on the screen, and I told them all this God has done for you.
Later on Peter and the girls told me that as soon as it had started to drizzle they had begun praying that the Lord would hold back the rain till we had finished. There were certainly many mistakes made that night, myself being to blame for switching the slides to quickly for the girls, one time prompting Katie to stare at me with the most severe look of bewildered confusion, but it is also equally certain that the Lord was with us that night as well, giving strength and power and words where we had none. And although I would never contest the moral of the old homiletic story, I for one liked the part the Holy Spirit wrote much better.
2 Corinthians 4:7 But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellence of the power may be of God and not of us.
-Pastor Matt Ude
We travelled today to the Chittoor district, where Jackie, Joey, and I sat in on Pastor Ohlmann's lesson for the first time. There were about 30 pastors crammed into a pretty small space. But that didn't stop them from diligent study in the Word! It definitely sets an example for us to follow: the message we come to learn is too important to be turned down simply because the building where it's being shared isn't "comfortable" enough~ or any reason for that matter!
We also travelled to a village called Kottravedu (sp?) to teach the children. It was exciting to see how many children filled that building just to hear about their Savior, Jesus! for moving their hearts to do so! Keep us all in your prayers as we continue to share the Gospel!
Wednesday, July 22, 2009
I try to make a point of bringing the mission helpers to this site because it shows the utter darkness that hangs over this nation. Literally millions of Hindu devotees and pilgrims make their way to this temple each year. The entire complex of parks, gardens, hotels, shops, and worship points that are dedicated to the worship of these false gods covers several hunderds of acres of land. Every time I come to this place, and especially as I look over the 1,000's of people gathered in the vast court yard in front of the temple, I have a hard time keeping my emotions in check as I realize that these very individuals, who are so dedicated and zealous in their worship, are also the very souls for whom Christ sufferd, died and rose again. God's gracious promise of forgiveness, salvation, and eternal life in Christ Jesus is also for them. I am overwhelmed by the grace and love of our Savior that I have been called out of darkness and into the marvelous light of Christ, and at the same time overwhelmed by the ache that is forever burning within my heart for the masses in India who do not trust in Christ alone for their salvation. There is so much work to be done here and we have only just begun to seize the opportunities and open doors that the Lord has set before us.
What a privilege to be about our Savior's work! I am so thankful for the Mission Helpers along with their families and sponsors who have given of their time, talents, and resources to share in this joyous work of spreading the Gospel here in India.
or flashy, but it certainly was powerful! We taught in a very small church, which wasn't any bigger then a small bedroom. We packed everyone in there, and there were even people outside of the doors! We taught the stories, and shared the wonderful news.
It is always the case that when I leave after teaching, I have a big smile on my face! To see the children who are so happy to be learning, and to be teaching them the best subject possible is absolutely amazing!
Tomorrow we head out to yet another area, our last before we head back. We will spend 4-5 days teaching in that area, and then we head back to Chennai. The time is really starting to fly by now that we are actually teaching! God-willing, we will be reaching hundreds to thousands of more people in the next days with the Gospel!
Rajamany and his wife, as well as Pastor Bhaskar also took us to a tourist spot up in the hills yesterday with a stream and waterfall. They got a kick out of mine and Carly's excitement when we saw monkeys. They were immitating us and laughing. Rajamany is so much fun to be around! He loves to joke around and tease, and he lets his faith shine!
Today we were visiting the same area and while Pastor Ohlmann was teaching, Rajamany and Bhaskar took us to visit some of the sites in a nearby town. We visited a dam and then climbed up in the hills to a small . I am amazed at how beautiful India is, despite the lack of sunlight! It is so green, and hills form a beautiful backdrop for the villages and fertile corn and sugar cane fields. When we thanked Rajamany and Bhaskar for showing us around they said they were happy to do it for us. They told us it is their way of saying thank you for taking the time to visit and share with them and their congragations.
It is so uplifting to see these people on the other side of the world proclaim their faith, knowing that we not only believe in the same God but also hear the same call from God to spread His word to the nations. Bhaskar, D. Paul, Rajamany, and the others have worked so hard to train pastors to send out and start churches for the thirsty souls in India. The people here are so in need of (and accepting of!) the Word! It is my prayer that God will move the hearts of many to increase support for missions so these pastor can get the resources they need to reach as many souls as they can. Their work is not in vain!
Tuesday, July 21, 2009
This morning we were privileged to worship with our brothers and sisters in Christ in Nellore. Since there was no translator present, there was much that we were not able to understand, yet the liturgy wasn’t so much different from ours back in the states. There were some songs of praise, the responsive reading of Psalm 134, also Scripture Lessons (Deuteronomy 6 and Romans 2). Pastor Moses then came forward to preach on several texts which each had to do with the concept of Christian love and bearing one another’s burdens. Following the sermon we had the opportunity to celebrate the Lord’s Supper with these fellow Christians. It was a unique experience that only further demonstrated what the Apostle Paul wrote: “For we, though many, are one bread and one body; for we all partake of that one bread." It wasn't our skin color or language, it wasn't our economic status or caste, it wasn't our form of worship or confessional documentations; it is rather the very word and promise of God Himself that unites us in one body through this holy meal.
Following the worship service, I had the opportunity to conduct Bible Class/Sunday School. It was so telling that not a single individual decided to get up and go home before Bible study. Bible Class attendance was identical to worship attendance. And we are coming to teach them? We would do well to sit up and learn from them, at least in this respect.
After Bible study, we had an opportunity to meet one another. Within this congregation of about 120 Christians, there are four that are “studying the Greek,” which means preparing to enter the seminary. It’s equivalent to our pre-the department at ILC. There are more younger boys who are already expressing a desire for the pastoral ministry. At the capable tutelage of Pastor Moses, and the Holy Spirit’s wisdom from above, this is a good sign for this land in which the fields are indeed white for harvest.
Praise be to God.
Sunday, July 19, 2009
India is beautiful, exciting and intimidating all at the same time. The busyness of the streets is unmatched by anything in America. I feel like I am finally getting use to the accents and can understand them I hope to be able to write again soon,
Saturday, July 18, 2009
Our little group of Pastor Matt, Mr. Peter, Dorena and I just kind of hung out for a while in the hotel, figuring out what we’re doing for lessons, getting picture props ready, and eating lemon and pineapple chicken for lunch :). It’s such a sobering thing to be dealing with the saving words of Jesus, and exactly how to present them to these people who may have never heard and may never have another chance to hear about the God who loves them. We just pray that God will work in their hearts in spite of our failings and mistakes. It’s just so sad to see the thousands and thousands who have been deceived by Satan and are heading for destruction. It feels like there is no way to even make that much difference with so may people who are so poor physically and spiritually, but the Lord promises that His word won’t return to Him void, and also that He loves all people. So all we can do is trust and follow Him, and He will increase the fruit.
Winding through the little country villages, there are so many tall palm trees, and quaint little huts with woven roofs, and water buffalo, and most of all the beautiful brown people who live their lives here in this poor place.
We arrived at a certain spot in amongst a little village, where we were to have our very first VBS. The people warmly welcomed us, and gave us sodas. The little kids started to gather, and it was so cute to watch them wave and giggle and interact with each other. They are so friendly to us, even though we’re strangers. We got to do the song “Our God is so Great” with actions for them, and we also did some hymns. More and more people gathered around us, and then it was finally time to start. We each went through our lessons, and tried our best to help the people understand God’s love for them, but it was a little hard to try it for time, because you feel like you should same more to explain exactly what you’re telling them, since the message is the most important thing they will ever hear. But God helped us through, and Pastor Matt wrapped it up with some questions, and then we handed out gum and crosses.
The people are so hungry for Jesus and to hear what we say. There were many who asked for special prayers, and it’s so sad how they are so needy, but yet so zealous too. Dear Jesus, please help them to feel your love, and give them faith.
We had a rainy drive back to the hotel, and Pastor Matt and Mr. Peter entertained us all with Indian jokes.
Katie Wiechmanns 18 July 2009
We landed in India! The one thing that I most noticed is that people were everywhere. Crowds and crowds of people. There was so little room anywhere. It is a little frightening at first. The temperature was really nice because it was so early yet, and there were people asleep everywhere, just lying by the roads! Pastor Ude and his driver, Kumar, came to meet us with a minivan and a small bus, so we piled all of our luggage in, and then we piled all of us in on top! We started off for Pastor Ude’s apartment, and we were in for a big surprise.The driving is like a wild carnival ride. Everywhere you look are motorcycles, rickshaws, buses, cars, bicycles, and carts going at top speed! Several times we would go barreling towards what looked like a bad accident waiting to happen and just as we were clasping our hands over our mouths to hold in the gasps of horror, the cars would part just at the last minute, and we sped safely on the through, honking vigorously! Everyone honks in India. The horn is just as important as the steering wheel (although both of them are on the wrong side of the vehicle : ) ) Gradually we came to realize that everyone really did know what they were doing, accidents rarely happen, it was perfectly acceptable to come within four inches of running over people, and that best of all, our Heavenly Father can protect us just as easily on the roads of Chennai as on the untraveled SD back roads : )I love India driving now! It is so exciting. Almost like taking part in a fast paced video game that came to life!
Anyway we made it safely to Pastor Ude’s house, (his apartment is on the 3rd floor!) and took a wonderful shower. It felt wonderful to be clean. Then we all went for a walk around Pastor Ude’s par t of the neighborhood. (Oh!!! I just say my 1st monkey! It is July 16th we are all in the bus together heading for the orphanage at: ) ) In some ways our walk was so so sad. The people seem very poor and many will try to get you to buy from them, or give them something. It is just so heartbreaking to see human beings in such physical poverty. Sometimes it is hard to remember that their true poverty is in their hearts not their bodies. We are so rich to have our Savior! Sometimes you just feel like running up and trying to give them money, food, or anything to make their lives better, when what they really need is the Bread of Life, and the precious living Water. Once, when we were walking past a shop I saw a tiny black kitten. It was so skinny and almost dead from starving but it could still cry. I felt like crying too, it was just so sad. But if we only thought about the sad things and the insurmountably things yet to do, we would never have Joy. Our Lord is working in India, and all things are in His hands. It is He that is doing the work not us. We have our Treasures in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God and not of us.
We made it!
I'm trying to make sense of a lot of this culture. The more we are here the easier it gets. Pastor Ohlmann is doing a wonderful job of explaining things as we go along. We travel a lot somedays it is a 9 hr. drive or more at a time. Our bodies are trying to a adjust to the time and all of our feet are swollen. We have some type of in the feet and ankles. But the Lord keeps us looking at the real reason for coming and that is to preach the Gospel. The first time will be today. We met many christian brother they treat us very well and are very happy we are here to support and encourage them. They love their Lord and Savior that is for sure.
We will talk to you soon and let you know how are first teaching lesson goes. We were told to expect 150 children.
praised. These praises took the form of singing, dancing, Bible readings, and sermons. While I could not understand all of the events since they were in Telegu, it was still obvious that we were all praising God. We were actually late for this event, it ended up starting at around 8:30, and it lasted 3 hours! Once we were done with that, we made it back to the hotel. At this time it was close to 1 AM!
Even though it had been another full day, it was difficult to get to sleep! The songs were going through my head all night, and I even woke up in the morning with one them still going through my head!
We drove back to Nellore, another 4 hour drive, and checked into our motel. We actually have the evening to rest, before we start teaching tomorrow. We'll end up spending two nights here before moving on.
Through all of our travels, it is not hard to see how blessed we are to be living in a wonderful country! The condition which so many people here live in is sometimes hard to believe. However, the one good side to this is that it is very easy to see the stark contrast that those who have the blessed hope of Christ display. They don't seem to take for granted the blessing of having a Savior.
Thanks for all of you who are praying for us, and for the furthering of the Gospel here.
I love everything about India! Despite the garbage and waste that lines the streets, and the stench that often accompanies it, this place is beautiful. Everything is colorful: the shops with clothes, fruit, flowers, and jewelry, the women's clothes, the billboards, the trees, and the buildings. I love how, in some ways, the people are so different! For example, we nod our heads up and down to say "yes" but they shake theirs side to side. And the traffic is crazy, they can get away with things that would get us a pretty hefty fine in the US. They signal with their horns, so there is a constant honking and beeping noise on the streets as cars swerve around each other on every side of the street. The people are so much like us in some ways too. The little boys flirt with and tease the girls, and they have stores like Levi's, Baskin Robbins, Pizza Hut, etc. here. These people love to smile, too. Smiling at them and waving seems to make their day.
We visited the orphanage last night. Their welcome was quite impressive! They had the area outside the orphanage covered in lights, and they welcomed us with banners, gifts, songs and dances by the Sunday school children. It's wonderful to see them praise the same God that we do in their own way, a reminder of how has been spread across the world. We are all His children and brothers and sisters in Christ.
Today we are splitting into smaller groups to travel to the different churches. I am excited to feel the people's enthusiasm for God's Word as we share it with them in the coming weeks!
Friday, July 17, 2009
Today the 12 of us will split into three teams. We leave one team here at the CLCI orphanage. I will accompany the 2nd team to a location about 3 hours south of where we are at now. And my team will travel 6-7 hours to the location where we will begin our work.
Everyone is healthy and safe.
The blog will be updated with journal entries from some of the Mission Helpers soon.
Wednesday, July 15, 2009
Just a quick post to let everyone know that the 2009 Mission Helpers to India have arrived. The Lord blessed us with an un-eventful trip from Chicago to Chennai via a 2 hour layover in London. We arrived at 4:30 am.
Right now we are at Missionary Ude's apartment. We will spend some time touring his neighborhood this morning and then exchange our money later in the day. Tomorrow we head to the CLCI seminary and orphanage.
Monday, July 6, 2009
This is something which I am greatly anticipating.
Currently, I am in the process of preparing the lesson which I will be teaching. This has proved to be a more difficult task then I had first thought. The idea of teaching through a translator, and teaching in a culture which I am not real familiar with can be a daunting task. But after I think about that, I remember the words that God said the Moses when God was giving him the task of leading the children of Israel.
"The LORD said to him, "Who gave man his mouth? Who makes him deaf or mute? Who gives him sight or makes him blind? Is it not I, the LORD? Now go; I will help you speak and will teach you what to say." (Exodus 4:11-12)
After reading this, it is hard to be nervous about teaching. Through preparation and prayer, God will make the words which I speak, sound beautiful and do the work which He intends.
I have a feeling that the next week will go very fast. Before I know it, we will be teaching the blessed news of our Savior, and seeing His Word at work in lives on the other side of the world!
Being a bit of a History nerd, I decided to read a history of India before going on the trip. Ever since the Indo-Europeans entered India (scholars think around 1700 B.C.), Hinduism and to a lesser degree, Buddhism have dominated the country. This trip is an opportunity from God to help bring the light to a country that sat in darkness for a long time.
Some Christian traditions say that Thomas was martyred in what is now an suburb of Chennai while trying to bring the gospel to the people of India, and it is to this very city we will fly in a week to help spread his word. God give us strength and wisdom.
Sunday, July 5, 2009
The Lord has not let me get too many jitters as of now. Getting ready for the trip and working at the Lutheran Home has kept me busy enough to prevent to many jitters. The lord reaches out to most of my jitters by strong daily devotions. Here is one to share. He tells me repeatly that I am going to use His strength and that He will be holding my right hand. That He will be leading--not me. He says Jackie trust and thankfulness will get you through this trip one step at a time. Thankfulness keeps you from critizing and complaining those "sister sins" that so easily entangle you. You need Me every moment. Your awareness of your constant need for Me is your greatest strength. Pray continually short prayers. When ever you find yourself worrying about the furture, repent and return to Me. I will show you the next step forward. That is the the best advice that I will ever have.
Looks like I will be taking Mike Naumann to the airport with me. I just got a call from Pastor Bruce Naumann just as I was typing this. So that will be our pleasure. We can take this as another step in the Lords plan.
I start taking my Malaria tablets Tommorrow that will be interesting. And I will be meeting for coffee in the next couple of days with Candy Olhmann so she can give me pointers and advice. I have 4 days off before I leave to India to finish preparing for my trip. I can hug my children and husband before I go and know that the Lord holds them in the palm of His hand. Thank you Lord. I'm sure you will here from us soon.
Your Christian sister Jackie Schwersinske
On Monday, July 13th, I will be accompanied by one other pastor and nine other men and women from several congregations of the CLC, who have volunteered to serve as Mission Helpers to India. We will depart on an evening flight from Chicago O'Hare airport to Chennai in the South Indian state of Tamil Nadu.
When we arrive in India we will be met by Missionary Matthew Ude. After touring the CLCI seminary and orphanage, we will divide into three teams to teach and proclaim God's saving word through pastoral training seminars and child evangelism programs. If past trips are any indication, and the Lord continues to bless this effort, the Mission Helpers will have the opportunity to reach upwards of 3,000 children with God's saving Word. Some of these children are members of our sister congregations in India, but many have never heard the truth of God's word concerning the forgiveness and salvation that has been won for them through the life, suffering, death, and resurrection of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
Please come back often to see pictures and read reports from myself and the other Mission Helpers. Please remember the 2009 Mission Helpers to India in your prayers.
Pastor Todd Ohlmann