We are still alive and well! After a crazy week of traveling through the mountains with Uncle A, we are back in our base city enjoying a day of rest. I will start off the first of many blog posts to catch you all up to speed on the happenings here in India.
Our week started with us being led by the Spirit (and our budget). We opted against a private taxi ride and instead chose to take the public bus system north through the Himalayans. (Disclaimer: Moms should skip the section on bus travel. Read on if you really want to, but you have been warned.)
I should first fill you all in on the roads here in the mountains. They are scarcely wide enough for one car, and yet, most are two lane (unlined) roads. Manuevering the large buses makes me think of the saying “between a rock and a hard place,” except here it’s more like “between a mountain side and a shear cliff face.” There were a few times I just closed my eyes and prayed we weren’t about to go over the edge. Knowing that God is sovereign over all things made buses passing buses around blind curves less terrifying and more thrilling..or maybe I am just an adrenaline junkie. Oh and don’t worry moms, the bus drivers honk while they go around the curves. Totally safe that way, right? My favorite is when the bus drivers know each other and stop mid-pass to reach out their driver windows, shake hands and do what I imagine to be the India version of “Hey man!”
All in all we spent at least twenty hours on the buses this past week. We got slowed down by a couple herds of goats, a rock slide, and some construction work, but no real big hiccups with our travels. AND PTL no one got sick! We jammed out to some awesome Indian music, had lots of quality prayer time, and got to see God’s glory in the beauty of the Himalayans up close and personal. Overall, I give travel by bus two thumbs up. It really was a blast and everyone should experience bus travel at least once…well unless you get car sick. In that case, definitely avoid bus travel by whatever means possible.
On the second day of our travels we stopped in a small town for the annual celebration of the founding of the first fellowship in the area. Six years ago, Uncle came to the first celebration. Then, there were only six believers. Today, the room was packed shoulder to shoulder with at least 100 new believers (some of whom had come to Christ in the past couple of weeks!). You all should know that the anti-conversion laws in this region are very strict, and essesntially, all of these people had broken the law by coming to Christ. They could face imprisonment and persecution for this crime, and yet, all of these people traveled on some of the world’s most dangerous roads to boldy and publicly proclaim Jesus as their Lord and Savior. How incredible is that?!
It’s very difficult to desribe in words how beautiful of an event it was. Hearing and seeing a packed room of new believers worship Jesus as Lord with their hands held high and their hearts abandoned (yop stole that from a song), was incredibly moving. What a blessing to witness God’s glory through these people shining so brightly. Hearing Uncle call on the name of Yeshua over and over again in heartfelt song brought me to tears. God is so clearly working and moving in India. Our prayers are being answered. Household upon household are being added to the Kingdom of Christ.
Keep praying for more people to come to Christ. Pray for the safety of these believers and for the workers who are faithfully tending our Father’s flock.