Happiness is riding in a bus with 30-plus giggly, giddy girls between the ages of 10 and 20. There were introductions that could hardly be heard, followed by giggles from the girls as I tried to repeat these exotic names I have never heard before. I wanted to know each one on the first try but that proved impossible. The ride was way too short; we dropped them off first and as their liveliness left the bus, I felt them steal my heart away with them. And then it was so quiet, all I could do was breathe and fight back the emotion. How can so many beauties live under one roof?! And how could I be so completely enchanted after just 15 minutes?! I can still hear their chatter and feel the warmth of their smiles.
You Can’t Plan Stuff Like This
The 10 oldest girls came over Sunday afternoon for a special discussion session with us. We asked them to think about how God has gifted each one of them, and then we asked them to share their dreams for how God might use their gifts as they pursue college, career, and family. What an honor to be part of this discussion! These gals spoke with great maturity and tenderheartedness, proclaiming how they will tell of God’s goodness to them from generation to generation. Tears were flowing, but they were the good kind, the kind that come from the deep places and express more than words ever could. God met us there, enveloping us with His presence. So far this is my top treasured memory.
Pretty Patterns Everywhere
This country is anything but plain. From clothing and jewelry to architecture and paint selections, India is a feast for the eyes. Patterns can also be found on women via henna body painting. A few of the gals came over just before we went to bed to treat us to their mehndi art skills. They created their designs on our arms and hands and then we gingerly crawled into bed with our arms outstretched to let it dry for the night. In the morning we sloughed off the residue to expose the tattoo that will last a week or so. Patterns could also be found in the fabrics sets given to us by the staff. A tailor stopped by for measurements, and come tomorrow we will have custom made outfits. I’ve said it before: Indian women know how to dress. The embroidery, embellishments, and detail on their clothing make my clothes look completely drab. I cannot wait to see what the tailor concocts!
staff ping-pong matches. animal counts. mac-n-cheese night. staff prayer at sunset. seeing the girls dance and hearing them sing. listening to a sermon I couldn’t understand (but loving every word of it!). bongos! scarves. prairie walk. delicious food. starry skies. trusting in God with all that’s in me.