If you have been watching any of our posts on Facebook or Instagram, you will notice something very obvious about me in any of the pictures I appear in.

I don’t exactly blend in with the people here.

Babu says often that Freddie could pass as Indian – when I ask about me, he laughs… really hard. I stand a full head taller than the women here and most of the men as well. I am gray haired and very – very – white skinned. There is no hiding me. I haven’t seen another white skinned person in almost a month.

Continue reading ““American Missionary””

Yesterday evening, after what seemed to be a long day, came to an end in worship. True worship in a sense is what we should be doing every moment of our day. Tonight it started with song, then the reading of scripture, and ended in prayer.

The songs were simple, no fancy instruments, just voices and clapping of hands. The voices were lifted in harmony, eyes closed lifting praise to a holy, righteous, true and living God. I did not understand the words but their faces reflected a love for our Father in heaven. Looking at them drove me to examine my own worship when I am singing. Am I doing it just out of ritual? Do I truly know the words if the PowerPoint goes down…?

Continue reading “Worship”

I’m so full of joy as I spend my days here in Kerala, India. The hospitality shown from Babu and his family is amazing. I’m convicted of my lack of it…

The passion shown in worship shows their love for Jesus! Their songs although not understandable to us, are full of passionate worship to our Lord and Savior. When I look into their eyes I see a hunger to communicate and express their love for the Lord and us as a mission team.

Continue reading “Pure Joy”

Make a joyful noise to the Lord, all the earth; break forth into joyous song and sing praises. – Psalm 98:4

Day 1 of the pastor’s conference is in the books. It went from approximately 6:00pm-9:30pm local time. As I mentioned in an earlier post, the pace has been an adjustment here compared to the busy lifestyles and full schedules we keep in America. Knowing that and experiencing it are two different things. As we arrived at the conference, we were rushed from our car to the open air worship area and were ushered to our seats. Many of the pastors and other locals were already there. Some have traveled a large distance as Babu has been involved in planting 40+ churches in the area.

Continue reading “Patiently Worship”

”But you were called to freedom brothers. Only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love, serve one another.” Galatians 5:13

Our host Babu, his wife Mercy, and daughter Grace, among others, have shown this team an incredible amount of hospitality since we have been here. I have eaten more food that I could imagine and they have gone above and beyond to provide us with a comfortable environment. In the short couple of days that we have been here, they seem to be focused on providing us with a space that feels like home and are seeking our needs well above theirs. The way I am seeing them serve with the home God has blessed them with is unbelievable.

Continue reading “Serve One Another”

Rejoice in the Lord always, again I will say rejoice. Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand; do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. – Philippians 4:4-7

I may not know you personally but I am going to guess that these few verses for Philippians 4 are at least somewhat familiar to you. But have you ever considered what kind of command God is placing on your life when you read this verse?

Continue reading “Rejoice in the Lord Always”

Yesterday, Babu took us to four different churches. One church was on the third floor of a commercial building and it is smaller than my office at work. In fact, I am guessing many of you have bathrooms larger. Babu said that twenty people meet every week in that small room to worship Jesus Christ. I had the honor of baptizing two of them last Sunday.

The next church was on the side of a hill, in the middle of the forest. It was one of the five Churches that they own the land and the building. Along the hills were houses. Many of the residents are Hindus, however God is on the move and every year more people are accepting Jesus Christ.

The third Church was an abandoned building in the middle of a rubber field. There were holes in the roof and it did not look safe at all. We sat inside in the dark, due to no electricity, and heard the loudest singing of our trip. We asked them about their struggles and how we could be praying for them as individuals and they responded that they do not need anything for they have so much joy in their heart for Jesus.

The last Church we visited was a rented space from another pastor not associated with GCM. It was comparable to a wine cellar. There was one light that hung from the center and it appeared that a car battery was used to light it. Bugs were everywhere and we saw a spider on the wall the size of my hand. But once again, it was a place that glorified God.

It continues to amaze me. God is moving in this nation. For those who are too busy to pay attention, it may not seem like it, for the Church in India is so small and so poor, but make no mistake Jesus is building His Church. The Kingdom of God is not of this world. It moves by the power of God’s Word and the power of God’s Spirit. And it moves from heart to heart.

“[O]n this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.” Matthew 16:18

Yesterday, we visited two churches. One church meets on the second floor of a three story business building. They rent the space. Justin preached on having faith in God.

The other Church we visited was in the midst of a rock quarry. The church building was right on top of a large piece of black Indian granite. It was a one room building that was 20′ by 50′. The building was comparable to an abandoned garage in America. Having said that, GCM is very thankful to have it. This is one of five churches where they own the building and the land underneath. For the other thirty churches they are renting space, or meeting in homes.

The cost to purchase land and build a one room church building is $20,000. Due to a majority of the parishioners being poor, the likelihood of this happening is very slim; however, with God all things are possible.

The people do not seem to be affected by the poor conditions (or lack there of) of their church buildings. The outside of the Church may not be beautiful, but when the inside is filled with the praises of God, it melts your heart. Why? It is because their faith is founded the Rock of Jesus Christ, not on things of this world. Their joy is not found in how nice their buildings look, or how comfortable their chairs are (many churches have no chairs). Their joy comes from knowing the steadfast love of the Lord.

At our first church visit, Freddie preached on being chosen by God before the foundation of the world (Ephesians 1:4). It is a powerful reality to know that God has loved you before there was a you. God tells us that He has loved you forever. After Freddie’s message, a man named Lubies (our driver), approached Javan and said, “Good sermon. Tears.” He then made a motion with his hands of tears coming down his face.

I would exchange the greatest Church building in America, for a church full of people with hearts like Lubies.

“The LORD is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer, my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.” (Psalm 18:2 ESV)