Wednesday, June 27, 2012

precious cargo.

Life in India has continued to be very wonderful and very hot! The main thing I have been doing is building relationships with the girls at KCH, which is the most important thing I can do. To build trust is not as easy as it sounds though. I mentioned in my last blog what a typical day looks like. I literally spend all day with the girls, except for maybe 3 hours and time for sleeping. This is what I call building relationships on steroids. I have begun to slightly realize the importance of relationships...

As human beings, we are relational people from the beginning of time. God created Adam and Eve because he desired to have a relationship with them. God created you and I because he desires a relationship with us. We have a direct connection with the creator of the universe. Despite our mistakes and unworthiness, God still desires a personal relationship. I can't but help think of how beautiful this is.

I think of different friendships that have come and gone...but God has always been and will always be my consistent Father. We were created to have a relationship with our creator, and if we ever want to create a strong bond and trust with God, then we must spend an immense amount of time with Him. It's a simple concept have a strong, trustworthy relationship, it requires countless hours of quality time, amongst other things.

As I am learning about these girls lives, I am drawing closer to God also. I pray that the girls would also say the same thing...that as they grow closer to me, they would also draw nearer to God. And that is how a relationship should you grow closer to someone, both of you should also grow closer to God.

Our relationship with God is the most important thing in all of life. He should be number one in our lives above everything else. And when He is, other relationships will also show health and godliness. My mind is continually baffled at the importance of relationships, especially with God.

My time here has allowed me to build precious relationships with 11 beautiful girls. We have established that we are all sisters and God is our Father. It's beautiful. They have slowly shared intimate things about their lives. I only have less than 3 weeks left in India, but it comforts me that I will not leave these relationships behind in India. These are special bonds that I intend to uphold forever...

Life is ultimately about relationships...with God, believers, and unbelievers...

Chelsea, another intern who recently went back to America (sad face), and I organized a talent show for the kids. The KCH kids are incredibly talented and we want to instill in them to use their talents for the glory of the Lord. They learned dances, skits, songs, and even did paintings. God has blessed each one of them and so we planned a night to praise God through displaying their talents. They all worked so hard and did a great job! We topped off the night with coke floats!

Chelsea and I were also able to take all the kids to pizza and McDonald's this past week, which is a special treat. We took all the boys and all the girls separately to pizza. They were able to pick whatever pizza they wanted and they had to order it for themselves. It was a wonderful experience to dine with these world changers. We treated everyone to ice cream after McDonald's. It was a special week to be able to just treat the kids!

I had my first experience with street food this past week and I didn't get sick...Praise the Lord!!! I had momos, which is like a dumpling. Super yummy!

On Wednesdays, we bring the girls over to the Watts' house for a special fun day. We have done everything from crafts, baking, games, movies, eating, dancing, etc! Today we talked about happiness. Last fun day, we talked about being new creations in Christ and had a butterfly day to correlate. They are incredibly lovely ladies. I just can't get over how special each day I spend with them is.

Whenever we drive anywhere with the kids, I always end up thinking "I am with very precious cargo right now and nothing can happen to them." Driving in India is absolutely crazy and sometimes you just don't want to watch. I pray for God's protection and safety as we travel around the city. These kids are truly precious cargo. God has saved them, given them a new life and home, and has so much in store for their futures. I'm honored to be apart of a mere few months of their lives...

By the way, the lizard does not live in my bathroom anymore...

Sunday, June 3, 2012

there's a lizard in my bathroom.

Glimpse of my first few weeks in India:

The first thing I noticed about India is that it is HOT! I thought being raised in Florida would prepare me, but it is seriously like living inside an oven. There are also a ton of people...everywhere! I spent my first week conquering jet lag and getting accustomed to living in India. I have a wonderful host family, the Watts', who have already taught me so much about India. I moved in at the KCH Children's Home almost two weeks ago. Basically, whatever the kids do throughout the day, I am there too. There is some free time during the afternoon where I organize the activities. It has been wonderful bonding with the girls.

A typical day will start at 5:00 or 5:30 in the morning (extremely early for me!) with devotions. The children have devotions every morning and evening. The rest of the morning consists of going to a park, breakfast, getting ready, cleaning, and music lessons. They love music lessons! Some are learning guitar, drums, and the bongos. After music lessons, they would work on homework or help with the Sunday School office. Lunch is at 1, and then from 2-4 it is nap time. I am a glorious nap taker, so this part of the day brings joy to my heart! 4-6 is free time, which I am in charge of. After free time, they girls will either make chipati (bread) for supper or ride their bicycles. The boys and girls alternate each day between the two. The evening devotions are from 7-8, and then supper is at 8. After supper, there is a little bit of cleaning and then the children will get ready for bed! It's a very action packed packed day!

What about school you ask? Right now the kids are on chuti (holiday). At the end of June, they will return to school and the days will look much different. I have spent my time so far getting to know the girls. Their names are: Dolli, Shivani, Pryanka-A, Pryanka-B, Simron, Stooti, Ankita, Prya, Joti, Hebsabah, and Meeni. They are all so beautiful! I found out that we all share a love for any normal girls! They all dream to be a pastor, teacher, or doctor! We are working on their English too, which is very great! They love teaching me words in Hindi. I have started writing down things they tell me so I can better learn the language.

I would love to share each moment of my time here so far, but I only have time to share my favorites. Enjoy! :)

One afternoon, we were talking about food. I told my them favorites were pizza, pasta, ice cream, peanut butter, etc. I asked them if they like Pizza Hut, McDonald's, KFC, or where else. Their beautiful eyes lit up when I mentioned KFC. They told me how they have been there 2 times and Mark English took them there for the first time ever. I told them how Mark English is my pastor, and they couldn't believe it! At that moment, I decided that we have to go to KFC this summer! It is such a special treat for them.

I mentioned they loved chocolate right? I had picked up some chocolate candy bars (5 Star) from a market. I saved it to give to the girls and boys during free time. We were sitting in a circle, and I brought them out and they were so happy! 5 Star, or really any chocolate is a favorite! We proceeded to eat tell a little about ourselves and our dreams. The afternoon ended with dancing to praise and worship music!

I eat all my meals with the children...that's a lot of Indian food! For the first few meals, the cook left out the chili in my portion. I finally told them that I was going to eat what everyone else was eating and not to fix me anything special! It wasn't very spicy, but then I found out it didn't even have the chili in it! The boys made this potato sorta looked like mashed potatoes. I tried it and it was very hot....because it had chili in it! It's going to be a fun summer. :) I like the chipati!

I have never liked hard boiled eggs...I have had two in the past week. You know you are called when...

They girls call me CaraDeDe, or just DeDe. I hear this thousands of times in a day!

Simron makes Chai every so good, but I miss coffee!

I saw monkeys! Once. And a camel.

There are cows everywhere...on the side of the road or just walking down the streets.

The days are difficult, but they are allowing me to build relationships with theses girls. I wouldn't have it any other way.

Chelsea moved in this past week...yay!!!! I'm incredibly glad she is here too. We have a lot of exciting things planned with the girls. A team comes this week to do a summer camp. The next week, we are able to start one on one times with the girls to give them more individual attention. And the week after, we will take a few girls each night to get pizza from dominos!!!! We are going to be doing dances, art, crafts, lessons about devotions, and so much more!

My first night at the home, I woke up around 1 am. I went to the bathroom and noticed a albino looking lizard sitting on the trashcan. He was staring at me. Of course, I screamed a little and jumped away from it. I was paranoid it would come in the room and crawl on me that night. The next day, it was still in my bathroom. I have developed a habit of opening the door, reading my hand in and turning on the light, then walking in, and finally glancing over the bathroom to find the lizard. He lives in there. I spot him most times. Last night, he was in my shower. I was so tired from the day. I just wanted to take a shower and go to sleep! But I was not going to with him in the shower. There were several attempts of scaring him away, but they ended with me screaming and running back into the room. He eventually disappeared, but I saw him this morning. His name is Raj. I also found out he could really be a gecko.

Raj still lives in our bathroom, but he hides when we are in there. Third roommate.

There is nothing better than doing what Jesus has called you to do.