Thursday, July 30, 2015

What's the Point?

Working Alongside the Women of India

This week I started to read over my book, India by Faith to refresh myself on where it was at.  The first section went wonderful, it just needs a little polishing.  And then I got to the second section (there are three sections).  The first chapter ended weakly and with the question, "what's the point of this chapter?"

I scratched my head and couldn't answer.  If I could find my journal from that trip I could probably finish it fairly easy.  But most of my things are in boxes, not to be seen again until we have a house.  I think I set it aside to be brought into the apartment, but can't find it right now.  So I've been thinking.  What was the purpose of that time in N--?

Of all the places I went to, N-- had no great revelations.  It seemed to be a jumping off place before we went up to the mountains of India.  The ministry there was already established and well run.  I felt more like I was on a normal women's retreat and didn't do anything significant.

And yet, they now have annual women's retreats after my visit, there were none before that.  The ministry continues to grow despite the persecution they experienced last year.  The church has now expanded to include more orphans and has a new building.

Perhaps my hang up is that I didn't get to know the women.  I spent most of my time with the leaders and hardly any sitting side by side with those I came to teach.  Their lives, their stories are unknown to me.  In fact, most of the time spent in N-- I was insulated from the Indian culture more than any other place.  We ate lasagna, BBQ chicken, American style buffet and mainly spoke English to English speaking people.  It wasn't quite like my first experience.

If this had been my first taste of India, it would've been wonderful.  There would be less culture shock and less immersion in culture.  I wouldn't have known what I was missing in the interaction of the nationals.

The point maybe of being in N-- was to give me a contrast of the different ministries there are.  Of one run by an American and Indian couple to one run by an Indian couple.  To experience a polished and growing ministry verses one that struggles month by month.  And most of all, to see the possibilities of what can happen over years of investing oneself into a women's ministry.

Maybe I have my answer, maybe not.  Thanks for letting me bend your ear as I try to figure this one out.

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