2011 India Trip

Pastor Ike Graham, Joshua Steiner, Josh Miller, Joy Miller and Ladeen Cover traveled to India in May 2011. They spend 2 weeks ministering to the believers, teaching the children at the children’s homes and traveling around to the different church planting locations.

Ladeen Cover’s Experience in India

In every life God gives marker experiences as references to look back on. Mine was a trip to India. That trip will forever be embedded into my memory as a gift from God. Everything from the culture to the people will be in the back of my mind always. When we first arrived it was a incredible. We couldn’t believe we made it! We were in India. I was ready to go and experience Indian life.

When we arrived to the orphanage we were greeted by the children waving ribbons and singing. The children would follow us and shake our hands and try to speak English with us. We could see from the time we first arrived that they had tender loving hearts. They had so little yet wanted to give so much. Every morning they would wake us up with a cup of tea. They wouldn’t let us help set up for meetings. We were treated like royalty. There were children there that come from completely broken homes, children that don’t have parents yet they still have manners, smiles on their faces and respect for authority. What a wonderful example of Christ’s love and grace.

It was interesting to learn and see the different takes on everything. For example when the children grabbed my arm for the first time and saw that when they took their hands away I turned even more white and then faded back to my skins normal color they called me magic. For the rest of the trip they would grab my arm just to watch it change colors. (I was thankful I didn’t have sunburn!) I was also able to sew with them. Most of the children have missing buttons on every piece of clothing they own. I got my sewing kit and gathered all the buttons I didn’t need and sewed it onto their clothes. It was so amazing how excited they got over a button. That hit pretty hard. We sometimes use buttons for decorations while they don’t even have enough to go on their clothes. While the children and I were sewing a lady came up and asked me to help her hem her sari. We had great fellowship time doing that.

While we were India we traveled to Pondicherry. We visited Munisamy and the church he pastors. We were able to see 2 new believes baptized. Afterwards we had a lunch together. It was so incredible to fellowship with the church people. Even though we could barely understand each other we had a connection through Jesus Christ that we could all feel.

The practorium classes were encouraging. Men from Orissa (32 hour train ride away) and Pondicherry and Rajapalyam all came together at the orphanage. Some men even brought their families. Seeing that many people truly excited to hear and learn about God’s word was astounding. The men would ask questions, the women took notes, even the children were sitting still. These wonderful people are not constrained by time as we in America are.

We also had a chance to work with the children, teaching them Bible stories, sharing testimonies, playing games, learning verses, and singing. They picked up on the stories quickly and they were excited to hear more. We ran across the same issues working with Indian children that we come across working with American children.

I didn’t feel the spiritual darkness of the country when we first got there. I did however feel extreme spiritual darkness when we went to a Hindu temple (to see the elephant). It was amazing how as we arrived closer the spiritual darkness would hit like a brick wall. You could feel it weigh you down. There were shops and venders inside the temple. Statues of gods were everywhere. It was a good experience though and it gave me a new look on the story of Jesus getting angry and flipping the tables over in the temple.

The team spent a lot of time with Paul and his family. They are some of the most generous people I’ve had the opportunity to meet. Paul will spend his own money to make sure the children have food and clothing. If it came down to it he would give the shirt off his back if it would help someone else. But he’s not unwise with his generosity. He’s aware when people are scamming him. His family is the same way. Paul and Sarah’s oldest son is studying medicine so he can open a mission hospital in India.

For our last day in India Paul hired an English speaking Indian driver (since Paul himself was not able to be with us). The driver was awesome. He took us on a tour of the city and he drove us to the ancient temples and to all the tourist sights. He even took us to the tomb of the apostle Thomas. He was not saved but since we were in the car with him so much we had an opportunity to share the word of God with him. He had asked why we came to India. When we told him we had spent most of our time in a Christian orphanage he mentioned how he didn’t understand why it is that only the Christians work with the orphans and really take time to care for them. So that was another opportunity to share with him the redeeming love of God.

The driver also took us to the beach were we got to step into the Bay of Bengal. While we were on the beach I was sitting on a rock and a group of Indians walked by and stared at me while they walked. I knew I must have looked tired and I was getting sunburned while I was sitting there. A little boy from the group stopped and looked at me and called another little boy over and they talked and kept looking at me and the whole group came and were all staring at me and finally the first little boy put his hand up and waved and said “Helllllooooo pink lady….can we have a picture?” After I laughed I got up and posed with them and one of them mentioned that they had never seen a white person. I was a minority!

God has given me many different lessons to look back on through out the trip. For a while I was extremely homesick. I missed my family and friends. But through the homesickness I had to learn to rely only on God. I had to learn to trust that God knows what He’s doing even when we don’t. I found that the busier we stayed the less and less I would think about home, which made me more and more aware of how I could help the people there. The lesson that will stick with me the most is the fact that people are people. We all get saved the same way. It doesn’t matter who you are, where you come from, or what language you speak, God loves, cares and understands each and every person. It’s our job as believers to go out (even if it is just into your hometown) and share the love of God (not just with our mouths but with our actions as well). I challenge us all to pray for each other every day, that we will continue to lift each other up, that we will get excited about God’s Word, and that we will show Christ’s love to everyone we come in contact with.

Categories: 2011 India Trip | Leave a comment

India Through My Eyes

Written by Joy Miller

Journal Entry – May 6, 2011
Wow, we leave in 4 days!  I can’t believe the trip is here already.  O Lord give me wisdom as we pack, prepare the lessons and other things we will be presenting.  Help me to rely on you as we take this huge step of faith.  If it is your will that we don’t come back, please give our family/friends the comfort only you can give.  I want you to be honored with my life, whether in life or death.  Thank you so much for everything you have done in my life through the preparation for this trip.  Your power and strength are so GREAT!  Thank you Lord!

Journal Entry – May 10, 2011
At the beginning of the flight from Brussels to Chennai, India something very significant hit me.  The Indian people are just normal people like me.  They are not all out to hurt Christians.   I have heard a lot of negative things about India, but Indians are people that God loves and wants to save.  As I get closer I am really excited to meet people that are from a different culture, but we serve the same living and true God.  Lord, give me a love for these people and a burden to see them saved. (As I was writing this on the plane, I couldn’t seem to stop crying.  I had such an outpouring of love for the people of India.)

Journal Entry – May 12, 2011
The Rajan family met us at the airport in Coimbatore and we loaded into a rented car for the ride to the orphanage.  Traffic in India is an awful mess and quite an experience.  The white dashed line in the middle of the road is merely a suggestion, as Joshua put it.  They drive on which ever side is open. No need to worry about expensive detour signs in India.  Indians just make their own road.  I have heard about how bad the roads were but you don’t believe it till you see it.

When we arrived at the orphanage all the children lined the steps and sang to us in English.  It was so sweet!  As we were driving up to the orphanage we saw girls standing on the steps to greet us.  Ladeen and I were so excited because we didn’t know ahead of time if there would be girls there since they had just added the second floor to the orphanage.  They all wanted to shake our hands and tell us welcome.  Their English was very limited but they wanted to try it out on us as much as possible.

Journal Entry – May 13, 2011
Wow, these days that “didn’t have anything planned” have been jammed packed.  We started teaching the children at 9:30 this morning and we went to 9:00 tonight.  We helped the children make their blankets this afternoon and they did a great job!  They would race and see which group could do the most.  The children were so excited to get something of their own.

Lord, thank you so much for preparing me and seeing me through this much of the trip.  It has been such a blessing to be here!  Even though it isn’t home, I love it!  I can really feel your presence here.

Today Sarah and I were able to talk for quite a while during one of the lessons the guys were teaching to the children.  We were talking about ministry and she said how blessed she feels that God chose her to help her husband in ministry. She didn’t say anything about how no one else helps her do things, but only how blessed she is to serve the Lord. That really hit me because I can sometimes get down because it feels like I am doing a lot and not very many people help. I thought it was a great attitude to have and one I want to model. She is a great example to me of a helpmeet to her husband and a woman with a servant’s heart.

Yesterday and today I thought none of the women at the orphanage could speak English, so I didn’t even try to speak to them.  I assumed that if they could speak English they would approach me to talk.  Tonight I was sitting on one side of the meeting room watching the children play games and Grace, the house mother, was sitting on the other side.  As I was sitting there I thought, I am going to go over there and just sit by her.  Even if we can’t talk she will know that I’m not trying to avoid her.  I went over and sat down and a couple minutes later she leaned over to me and said something about the game the children were playing, IN ENGLISH!  I was very surprised and I asked her a couple more questions about the game.  She spoke pretty good English but she thought her English was bad so she didn’t want to approach me to talk.  We were able to talk for quite a while and I learned quite a few interesting things.  I thank the Lord that He gave me the insight to go over and sit by her.  Otherwise I might have gone the whole 2 weeks without realizing that she spoke English.  I want to make it a point to at least go around and shake every woman’s hand and say Praise the Lord (that is how they greet each other in India).

Journal Entry – May 14, 2011
We made the 10 hour car ride to Pondicherry in one piece.  That is almost a class B miracle in India.  We then headed to the outreach center and had a program there.  Joshua gave his testimony, we sang “Yesu Rajanin” and Pastor Ike preached.  Right before Pastor Ike got up to preach Paul leaned over and told Pastor Ike that he wanted him to preach on a different topic.  Pastor Ike got up, sat down his notes, walked up front and preached an excellent gospel message without any preparation.  I wanted to talk to the believers so bad, but I couldn’t.

Journal Entry – May 15, 2011
This morning we worshipped with the believers at Pondicherry and we had 2 baptisms.  Josh and I were both able to give our testimonies and Pastor Ike preached again (He made sure he checked with Paul before the service to confirm the sermon topic).  I wasn’t able to speak to most of the women, but I would smile and go shake their hand.  After the service I found out that Christavadi (the daughter of Munisamy, one of the church planters.) and her husband, Paul Samuel, both could speak very good English but were afraid to approach us to talk.  Once we learned that they spoke English, Josh and I had a great time talking to them and learned things about India.  They said they wanted to help us learn Tamil and they taught us 4 phrases and some words in Tamil.  They were very good teachers and helped us think of ways to remember the different phrases.  Right before we left Christavadi mentioned that she was hoping that we would have sung “Yesu Rajanin” again that morning.  We asked her if she wanted to sing with us, if we sang it again right there.  She sang with us and it was such a blessing!

Journal Entry – May 16, 2011
We got back to the orphanage this morning at 5:30am after driving all night to get back from Pondicherry.  We headed to bed with ear plugs and face masks so we could sleep longer that 30 minutes.  As I was getting into bed the rooster started crowing, I was glad I had ear plugs.  Ladeen and I were able to sleep till about 11:30 and we headed to lunch.  As we were finishing our lunch the believers from Orissa arrived.  It was so neat to see the people we have seen in pictures and have prayed for.  They don’t speak Tamil and have very limited English so we are all trying to get by on a small amount of English.

Tonight after the dedication of the second floor I sat with the children on the steps and they taught me words in Tamil.  They would write the Tamil word in English letters for me, then I would write the English word and then the way to spell it phonetically, so I could remember how to say the words.  They got a great kick out of me trying to learn Tamil and it gave us a way to communicate without many words.

Journal Entry – May 17, 2011
This morning we had our first Practorium sessions.  Because we have 3 different languages represented we sing at least one song in each language at the beginning of the sessions.  During the teaching, Pastor Ike says a statement and then Peter would interpret it into Odia for the people from Orissa and then Paul would interpret into Tamil for the people from Tamil Nadu.

Each night this week are going to have a special program in the evening and tonight it was presented by the children.  After the program tonight Sarah and I were able to talk for quite awhile and she told me some of the sad stories of some of the children.  It is such a blessing that these children have a safe place to call home.

Journal Entry – May 18, 2011
This morning I woke up sick.  As I lay in bed, I knew God had a plan in me getting sick, but I just didn’t know what it was yet.  Later in the day I heard the children singing down the hall and the Lord brought a thought to my mind.  Most of those children aren’t believers and I could use the time in bed to pray for each of them.  I spent a lot of time in prayer today and I will continue to pray that the Lord works in their hearts.

Journal Entry – May 19, 2011
This morning when I woke up I still wasn’t feeling back to normal, but I was able to go to the morning sessions.  I was supposed to give my testimony this afternoon during the children’s lesson but I was feeling really sick again.  I really wanted the chance to give my testimony to the children since that was really my only opportunity to share the gospel with them.  I did get up and go give my testimony but I thought it didn’t go very well because my mind was so out of it.  Later on Joshua said how good he thought my testimony went and I know that it was the Lord speaking through me because I did not feel good.  After the lesson this afternoon we handed out the little flashlights that we took for each of the children.  The children lined up and we started handing out the flashlights.  As we were getting closer to end of the line Josh and I started thinking, “O no, we aren’t going to have enough.”  We both started praying that there would be enough for each of the children.  As the final couple of children came up we realized that we had the EXACT number of flashlights as there were children.  PRAISE THE LORD!  After the service tonight we went outside in the dark with the children and we waved our flashlights and sang “This Little Light of Mine.”  It was a lot of fun!

Journal Entry – May 20, 2011
This morning we had a teaching session on baptism and communion.  At the beginning of the session they presented us each with a shawl and thanked us for coming.  After the teaching sessions we headed outside for the baptisms.  There were 18 people that were baptized; some were pastors from Orissa that hadn’t been baptized yet.  It was really neat to see people follow what the Lord teaches in the Bible.

After the baptisms we set up for communion and the ladies were upstairs and the men downstairs for feet washing.  Mara (the cook’s wife) and I washed each other’s feet.  She doesn’t speak English and I haven’t been able to talk to her, but I have definitely felt a special connection with her since we washed each others feet.  It was so much more symbolic to wash a person’s feet when they were actually dirty from walking around in the dust.  I understand the story in the Bible much better now when Jesus said, “He who has bathed needs only to wash his feet, but is completely clean.”  Here my feet are dirty as soon as I come out of the bathroom from taking a shower.  After feet washing we then headed downstairs and had the love feast and bread and cup.

Journal Entry – May 21, 2011
We got up early this morning so we could go downstairs and play with the kids before we had to leave for Rajapalaiyam.  Most of the children are going on home visits for the week so they won’t be here when we come back on Monday.  We then said goodbye to the children and the believers from Orissa.  I was able to give both Alice and Swarti (the ladies from Orissa) a hug and I pray that they felt my love for them though I never got to talk to them.  We then got in the car for the 8 hour car ride to Rajapalaiyam.

Journal Entry – May 22, 2011
This morning we went to the church at Cholapuram and were able to be involved in the dedication of their new building.  It has taken them about 2 years to complete it themselves.  We sang in the service and Pastor Ike preached.  They also honored us by giving us each a perfumed “necklace.”  After the service we left and went to worship with the church in Sankarankovil.  The room they meet in is about 8×18 and there were about 50 people in one half and the 6 of us that were visiting sat in the other half.  The people were crammed in there very tight, but they were so happy to be there and worship the Lord.

We then headed to Torbay House (the orphanage in the south) to visit the children there.  When we got there they sang to us and gave us each a bouquet of roses.  We were able to spend some more time with a couple of the girls who visited Agape Home last week for the classes.  It was nice to see some familiar faces when we got there.  We were able to help the children make the blankets we took for them, sing and play games for most of the afternoon.  We had some more hard goodbyes at this orphanage also.  Especially the couple girls we had grown close to the week of classes.  We then headed back down the road to the youth meeting at Cholapuram.  They said their youth group is ages 15-35 but because we were there, they had all ages.  During the service we sang, Joshua gave his testimony and Josh preached the message.  After the service we said more goodbyes, went to eat at a restaurant and then started the long drive back to Agape Home.  We found out that today was our record temperature high since we have been here, 117◦ F.

Journal Entry – May 23, 2011
We got back to Agape Home around 4:00am this morning.  We got a few hours of sleep and then left at 9:30am this morning and moved into the hotel near the Rajan’s house in Coimbatore.  After we moved our stuff into our room, Ladeen and I wanted to go out shopping so Pastor Ike took us.  We were each able to find a couple saris that we liked and then we headed back to the hotel.  Soon Paul came to pick us up and we went to the Rajan’s house for lunch.  We had a great time just sitting around, talking and getting to know the Rajans better.  Then we headed out to go shopping and Ladeen and I got our first ride in an auto rickshaw.  Benny Rajan rode in the front and Sarah, Ladeen and I were in the back.  We arrived at the mall and Sarah took us shopping for Chudedar (long shirt and pants outfit).  Ladeen and I each got 2 and we had a lot of fun trying on all the different colors.  Then we headed to the store that sold “fancy” saris.  They showed us many beautiful saris that were hand beaded and Ladeen and I each picked out one that had sequence.  After we had picked which ones we wanted, Sarah said she would be right back and we should look at the other saris.  As she was leaving I turned to her and said, “You aren’t going to buy those are you?”  She turned and said, “I have plenty of saris” and turned and kept walking.  I sat there thinking, “Did she misunderstand me or is she being sneaky?”  Pretty soon she came back with a bag, Yep, she did it, she bought us our saris.  It was very nice of her and Paul but we did not expect them to do that.  After supper we went back to the hotel and Ladeen and I got a lesson on how to put on a sari.  It took us a little while to catch on, but we finally got them on and were able to take pictures.  They are so beautiful!

Journal Entry – May 24, 2011
Today we started our journey toward home.  The Rajans took us to the airport and came in to see us off.  We all prayed together and said some very tearful goodbyes.  We flew back to Chennai and our driver picked us up at the airport and we headed to our hotel.  After we got settled we went on an adventure to find a pizza place.  We were able to find a Pizza Hut and try the Indian version of pizza.  It was good but not worth as much as we paid for it.  On the way back to the hotel we stopped at some shops and Josh and I were able to find quite a few gifts for family and friends back home.  After we were done shopping we decided we would all try to get into one auto rickshaw.  That is a tight squeeze!  Pastor Ike was in the front with the driver and all four of us younger people were in the back.  I had to sit on top of Ladeen’s lap for us all to fit.  After cooling off and dropping off our stuff at the hotel, Joshua, Josh, Ladeen and I headed back out to do some more shopping and exploring.  We had a great time and found some really good soft serve ice cream cones for 8 rupees ($0.25 US dollar).  We tried quite a few different flavors over the course of the evening.

Journal Entry – May 25, 2011
We headed out on our tourist day around 6:30am so we could get most of our sightseeing done before it got too hot.  We went to see the Tomb of Thomas, some hand carved stone temples, a replica of an Indian village and the sea shore.  We told our driver that we wanted a really good Indian meal since it was our last meal in India.  He chose very well, I had some really good naan and Indian noodles.  Then we headed back to the hotel and Ladeen and I headed to bed to sleep till we left for the airport at 9:00pm.  We are trying to get our bodies back to USA time as soon as possible.  Our driver picked us up and we headed to the airport for the long flight back to the USA.  We had to go through multiple security checkpoints and finally got on our plane headed to Brussels.

Journal Entry – May 26, 2011
When we got to New York it felt so good to be back on America soil, without soldiers walking around the airport with big guns.  We went through customs and headed through security again to go to our next gate.  When we got to our gate we found out that our flight was canceled.  We had to wait around 9 hours for the next flight to Cleveland.  I didn’t think I would ever sleep on an airport floor, but I did today. Once we finally got on our plane we had to sit on the runway for 3 hours until we were cleared for takeoff.

Journal Entry – May 27, 2011
We are home!  We finally made it to Cleveland at 2:00am this morning.  After all the trouble we had, I have never been so happy to get to Cleveland.  When we started the trip home I was determined to still look “okay” when we got to Cleveland.  I still looked human when we got to JFK, but after the 13 hour layover I am sure I looked pretty bad when we got back to Cleveland.  Through it all, the Lord had a plan and I pray that we will continue to trust Him now that we are home and things are back to “normal.”

A big highlight was getting to stay at Agape Home (orphanage).  During our stay in India we started looking at the orphanage as home.  When we were away for the weekend we would find ourselves saying, “We get to go home tonight or 3 hours to home.”  We didn’t even realize we were saying it most of the time.  I loved waking up to the sound of the children outside our window and also the rooster, though I didn’t enjoy that very much.  I loved eating at the same place as the other believers and children.  I loved going up on the roof of the orphanage each morning and doing my devotions.  I loved getting to spend extra time with the children each evening.  If we had been staying at the hotel in Coimbatore we would have missed a lot of special times.  When we got to Agape Home we learned that only about 20% of the children were believers. There were so many days that I wanted to talk to them and share the gospel with them.  Because of the language barrier our only opportunity to share with them was during our classes with them each day.  After that they would just have to see God’s love in us.  I pray that each of those children thinks about what they are learning and decides to make Jesus the Lord of their life.  It was really hard saying goodbye to all of them because I don’t know that I will ever see them again, on earth or in heaven.  With fellow believers we know that we will see each other in heaven if not before.  That is a promise that I cherish.

I pray that you enjoyed reading about India through my eyes.  I also pray that the Lord has touched your heart through my experiences – Joy

Categories: 2011 India Trip | 1 Comment

The Power of Christian Love

Written by Josh Miller

A year ago today the 2011 India Team took off from Cleveland Hopkins Airport and headed to India.

     I learned a lot in India, but the thing that seemed to be the most memorable was how God reminded me of the power and importance of love in the Christian life.  Throughout our time in India we were continually meeting our brothers and sisters in Christ. Even though most of the time we couldn’t talk with them we could still experience that love that we are to have for one another as followers of Jesus Christ.  We had the experience of being able to go up to someone, who we were unable to talk to and who we had never seen before, and still give one another a hug because of the love we share in Jesus Christ.  That isn’t something I will forget easily.  The love that I speak of was something that I saw others giving and it was something that I received.  It was something that I was able to give even without opening my mouth to speak.

There came a day on our trip that I found myself perplexed and a little frustrated about how I could have a great influence on the kids at the children’s home where we were staying.  I had been told that most of the children didn’t know the Lord as their personal Savior and I wanted to be able to talk with each one about our Lord.  However, I couldn’t speak the same language.  As I was praying about this struggle the Lord reminded me of John 13:35 that says, “By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”  I realized that it’s not by my words, but by my love that they would know that I am a disciple of Jesus Christ.  They already knew that I was a Christian, now what I needed to do was to love them in anyway I could, such as holding them, and memorizing their names.  As I was talking to Joshua Steiner about this, he made the point that we could do the same thing for others we came in contact with, such as our drivers.  Once again even though we couldn’t talk with them we could still try to show them love in various ways even if it was just simple things we could do.

Because the Lord had reminded me of how important love is in the Christian life, I began to notice it in different ways.  I noticed it in how the believers in India would serve one another, and us, their guests, as well.  I also saw their giving attitude.  Many of them make only four dollars a day and yet they have a giving attitude.  They give to help each other and they give to others that aren’t believers.  I heard about a house that they built for a widow and later I even saw it and met the widow and her children.  They also give by providing children’s homes for kids when parents can’t take care of them.  Best of all there are people coming to Christ through their acts of love for one another and those who don’t know Christ.  I pray that through my experiences you will think more about God’s love that we are to show to others.  Christ used my visit to India to remind me that I am to be known as a Christian, by my love!  May God be glorified!

Categories: 2011 India Trip | 1 Comment

Lessons God taught me in India

Written by Joshua Steiner

I am so grateful to God for the time that I had the privilege of spending in India. As the days continue to pass, marking the time since I returned from India, it can be easy to forget the many lessons that God taught me while I was over there.  Everything from, learning about myself and the pride that can sneak in so easily without even notifying me that it is there; to the importance of demonstrating love to everyone with whom I have contact. God also reinforced the desire that He has given me to teach His Word to people no matter what the age, social status, or color of their skin.

One of the biggest lessons that He taught me, that I trust I will never forget, is that the people in India, and around the world for that matter, are human beings just like us. They have the same kind of thoughts and desires. Though they may do some things a little different, eat different food and have different customs, they are still people who God loves and desires to save. There was never a specific time that this lesson “hit me.” Instead God slowly opened my eyes as I interacted with people and observed the thousands, upon thousands of people that surrounded me.

Even here in the States it can be so easy to look at crowds of people and just see them as a group of human beings; however, I believe that God wants us to look at all the people around us as He looks at them. When God sees people, He sees men and women, boys and girls who all possess a soul. Each one of these people will either spend eternity in heaven with Him, or in hell suffering punishment forever. Is this how I see people?

I wish that I could say that when I was in India this is all I thought about as I looked at the thousands of people around me, but that was not the case. There were a couple times when those thoughts did come in my head; and when they did, I was sobered. I was burdened for the millions of people around the world and even in our backyard who need the Lord. Paul asks in Romans 10:14-15 “How then will they call on Him in whom they have not believe? How will they believe in Him whom they have not hear? And how will they hear without a preacher? How will they preach unless they are sent? Just as it is written ‘How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news of good things!’” I am called by God to tell these people. Paul says that we are ambassadors for Christ. We have the privilege of going and telling the Good News: “He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him” (2 Cor. 5:21). Each one of us, as a follower of Christ, is to share Christ with those around us. Many of us will never go to a foreign country to share Christ, but we still have the responsibility right now where we are living.

God taught me this lesson, but I am still learning it. I do not always see people as God sees them. I do not always share Christ with them when I am given the opportunity. My prayer is that God would continue to work in my heart, giving me a burden and a passion for the lost souls around me. My prayer is that when I look at people, I do not just see faces, but I see souls for whom Christ died to save. I pray that God would do the same work in your heart as well. God can teach us lessons when we travel 8,000 miles to India; and He can also teach us lessons from the comfort of our own home. Will you join with me in surrendering to God’s will in our lives as He works through us?

Categories: 2011 India Trip | 2 Comments

2011 India Trip Movies

Pastor Ike Graham, Joshua Steiner, Josh Miller, Joy Miller and Ladeen Cover traveled to India in May 2011 to be a part of the national CGBCIndia conference, visit the different church planting locations and assist with the orphanage ministry.

Click on the links below to see movies from that trip.

Video tour of Joy & Ladeen’s room at the orphanage

“Happy, Happy Welcome to You”
The children at Agape Home singing “Happy, Happy Welcome to You” in English as the 2011 team arrived. It was a great welcome to India!

The Days of Creation Lesson
They taught the children about the days of creation. By the end of it the children knew them so well that they could respond to what was created on what day without it having to be interpreted into Tamil. They were very quick learners.

Worship during the Practorium Classes
There were more than 3 languages represented at the practorium classes. So each session they would have at least one song in Tamil, Odia and English. This is the believers from Tamil Tadu singing in Tamil. So if you were wondering, that is why not everyone is singing, because they couldn’t all speak Tamil.

Worship and Morning Devotions at Agape Home
Every morning the house mother Grace would bang the big drum and all the children would come into the main meeting room for Worship and Devotions.

Josh Miller’s Testimony
Josh Miller giving his testimony through Paul, our interpreter.

“Sing Hallelujah to the Lord”
Jennifer wanted to learn how to sing the girl’s part on “Sing Hallelujah to the Lord” in English. Josh would sing the guys part and Jennifer would sing with Joy on the girls part until she learned it. Here is a video of her singing with Josh before we left the orphanage.

“I Have Decided to Follow Jesus” in Tamil
The kids singing “I Have Decided to Follow Jesus” in Tamil.

Blanket Making Day at Torbay House
They took blankets along for each of the children in the orphanages. The children helped knot the tassels on the blankets. This is at the orphanage in the south, Torbay House.

Agape Home Tour – Part 1
Agape Home Tour – Part 2
Tour of Agape Home Orphanage in Coimbatore,India. Recorded by the 2011 India Trip Team – May 2011.

“Praise Him!  Praise Him!” in the dark w/flashlights
They gave each of the children at Agape Home a little flashlight and then went out in the dark and sang while they waved their flashlights. The children knew this song in English.

“You are My King”
The 2011 India Team singing for one of the evening programs. There were 3 languages represented at the week of classes. There was usually at least one song in each language.

“Praise Him!  Praise Him!”
The children learned this song in English to sing for the 2011Indiateam when they got there.

Bible Lesson at Agape Home
Joshua teaching a lesson to the children at Agape Home with Gilbert interpreting.

Categories: 2011 India Trip | Leave a comment

Yesu Rajanin “Adore” – Tamil Song

Before we went to India in May, we were thinking about ways that we could be an encouragement to our brothers and sisters in Christ.  One of the ideas that we had was to learn a song in their language. It was a lot of work to try to figure out exactly how to say all those different sounds, but with the Lord’s help we were able to sing a song in Tamil. We recorded ourselves and sent it to Brother Paul to make sure that we were saying everything right; and he gave his approval. I would have never guessed how much of an impact that song would have on people. I don’t know how many times we were asked to sing it for them, but each time when we did, you could tell that the people were encouraged to see that we had made an effort to try to reach out to them in this way.

The 2011 India team had the opportunity to share this song during Sunday Worship at the Orrville Grace Brethren Church.

Yesu Rajanin “Adore” – Tamil Song
Click on the link above to see the movie.  You will be redirected to the Insight into India facebook page.

English Meaning:

Chorus: Adore and adore the precious feet of the King Jesus
Adore and Adore the lotus feet of the Lord of our Soul

Verse 1:
Holy, Holy God
Whole Globe praise, the true King our Lord
Eliminate our fear and be the help
Adore and adore

Verse 2:
O God you offer the comfort and take away
all the troubles – the God of grace
You comforting and saving this poor
Adore and Adore you.

Verse 3:
You are powerful Lord take away all my weakness
Giving me the strength and hold my right hand
I surrender all my spirit , soul and body
Adore and Adore you

Categories: 2011 India Trip | Leave a comment

2011 India Trip Pictures

We pray that you will enjoy seeing the pictures from the 2011 India trip.

You will be redirected to the Insight into India facebook page to see the photos of the trip.

Trip Preparation

Album #1 – Prep and Travel to India

Album #2 – First 2 days at Agape Home (Children’s Home)

Album #3 – Weekend Trip to visit the church in Pondicherry

Album #4 – Week of Practorium Classes

Album #5 – Baptisms

Album #6 – Three-fold Communion

Album #7 – Agape Home Facilities and Staff

Album #8 – Church Planters and their families

Album #9 – Hanging Out and Saying Goodbyes

Album #10 – Weekend trip to visit the churches in southern Tamil Nadu

Album #11 – Visit to Torbay House (Children’s Home)

Album #12 – Last 2 days in India and the trip home

Categories: 2011 India Trip | Leave a comment

Create a free website or blog at WordPress.com.