11 February 2012

Hatibandha Village, Hatibandha People

Hatibhanda Village is in Bangladesh, about 3 hard driving hours outside of Dhaka. By the time I arrived, I felt beaten up by the travel and the attempt to protect myself from being constantly thrown about inside the vehicle. It jerked in all directions, bounced over pot holes, slammed the brakes. The car did drive almost all the way to the village this time. The previous and only time I came before, we had to walk along the soft, slippery road (rainy season) , me holding a man's arm on both sides. The children for our new home gathered happily to meet me for pictures. Each one has a difficult story of the death or abandonment of parents. Each one now lives with a widowed parent who barely survives, or a step parent who abuses him/ her or relatives eager to be relieved of them. They need to be out of the situations now, but I cannot do it now. I can only move it forward one step at a time. We need to build up sponsorship support first, then build the house, then move towards a better life with solid discipleship for these children. There is a small church planted in this village,with a young, faithful pastor. But we will literally be building the church with this home. We will train up 20 well grounded leaders, who will then be lights back to their own families and throughout the village. Hopefully, some pastors and missionaries will come from the group, but the Lord needs laborers and vegetable sellers too. Now, I am back in the partners home in Dhaka. The sounds outside are similar to any city in Asia. Men are walking through the streets "calling" out whatever they are selling, looking for customers, trying to bring home enough for the night to bring a meal for their families. Horns are blowing as vehicles make their way through the streets. Water is running from someplace. Children are laughing and playing. Life is going on as it does every day. I am the one who is different-- a middle aged woman from central Virginia, trying to do something to bring the gospel to people in a poor village, hours away from the capital city where I am sleeping tonight. When I return to US, I will work on the support that will enable us to provide a home and bring the children into it. Bangla beleivers are ready to care for them and teach them. We will invest in the precious small ones and also raise up some witnesses and leaders for this place. My role is actually the smallest part, but it does not happen without me. Some ministry does not happen without you. What is it? We all need to find what the Lord has for us to do, and serve it faithfully.

05 February 2012

Family prayer time

Here in Nepal, the electricity comes only a few hours each day. As I share life in the Nepali home, I shiver with the rest of them as the temperature drops in the evening. It is February and there is no heat in the home. Our littlest one, 4 years old, has a fever. The electricity clicked off a few hours ago, but that did not prevent us from having a good dinner, cooked with propane. Now, the family is huddled around a battery lamp, trying to see their Bibles and read aloud, each one in turn. Lord is honored in this home and words of thanks are lifted up to Him in the midst of circumstances that are very common and ordinary here. Some requests were certainly made to the Lord, but I doubt that electricity or heat were even mentioned.

Beautiful Bricks

I never really noticed bricks before this trip, but now I see them everywhere. Bricks are the pieces that fit together to make a building for teaching and worship. The building provides a place for the people to gather and a place for ministry to happen. For the last two weeks, I have been on site with 11 American men, who were contributing their time and skill and brute strength to making a church building for our people in a Nepali village. It fills my little brain to think of all the advance work that has gone into preparation for this missions venture both in Nepal and US, but there is a special feeling of satisfaction when a plan comes together and WORKS. The days are completed now and the work on the church continues. There is much left to be done, but for two weeks America and Nepal worked side by side. Folks walking along the road stopped to watch. It was not something you see every day. Before much longer, the building will stand and the village will multiply throughout the village. We hope that many will come to know the Lord. Many will grow through the teachings given. Pastors will learn and fellowship and encourage one another. And most of all, we hope that the heart of our dear Lord will be blessed by the worship. Bricks built the church, each one carefully laid in the correct place and mortared down to serve with those around us. Our lives and our ministries are built in. The same way- one piece at a time.