India- Village Outreaches

This past Sunday morning at church I had people asking about India.  Trying to find words for the overall feeling of the trip is hard, and at one point while talking to fellow staff members I actually started to cry.  I felt so silly becoming tearful just trying to explain that until you go and experience it, there aren’t words to describe Harvest India.  The Kingdom work they are doing and the way they are caring for the children and people in India is unimaginable. 

Let me tell you about one of our night events . . .

Our schedule was packed, and even when our days were full there was always a night event (and we usually had to drive an hour there and back).  One of our events was a village outreach.  These were at villages where Harvest India had planted a pastor and a well.  Sometimes the pastors are given a water buffalo and a bike to start their ministry, but due to funds, often times they go with empty hands and faith alone.  Harvest India continues to connect with these villages, and they brought us along to experience and run a few of their nightly outreach programs.  Over the trip we were able to do four of these total between the two groups. Once we would fill the buses with our two teams we would be off in separate directions.

As we drove into the village you could start to make out music over some sort of speakers, like if you were listening to announcements at an Elementary school.  A little muffled- but we knew there was music playing from something, somewhere.  When we hopped out of the bus we would be escorted past the crowd and up to seats at the very front (which basically happened everywhere we went).  Often times there were about 20-40 people already there, but they continued to blast the loud music and slowly people from the village would walk up.  And of course, once they started hearing English from a microphone more people would join the crowd.

The order of the night looked the same as most of our programs, we would play a few worship songs, someone would give a testimony and then either my husband or the other Pastor Chris would preach.  But afterwards, EVERYONE wants to be prayed for.  Not just the sick or injured or a few people wanting prayer, every single person wants you to place your hand on their head and bless them.  They can’t understand a word you are saying, but they grab at your hand and place it on their head.  When you say “Amen”, they grab your hand and place it on their son or daughter.  Hopefully you have time to pray for those kids before another adult just takes your hand away to place it onto their head.  Depending on your time and the chauffeur that was in charge of your group, you were either rushed through prayers or had time to chat.  It was overwhelming at times.  Through the exhaustion of the day our teams would press on and do all that they could for the people in the village with the time that we were given. 

I don't know how others were praying, but as I laid hands on these beautiful people I just kept asking God for miracles to happen in their lives.  Miracles in a way that they would forget about the other millions of Gods that people in India serve and would know without a doubt that our God was the One True God.  You could see that at 10:00 at night they were tired too, and yet they were desperate to be touched and prayed for.  So like I said, you forget how tired you are and just pray for as many people as possible, knowing that they could use the prayers.
This is when we wait for them to shout from the loud speakers and draw others in!

That guy preachin' is a hottie;)

The kids sit, then the women, and the men in the back.  Other than the pastors the men were pretty distant at these outreaches.

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