As I was walking down the street headed to my favorite coffee shop to write my blog, monsoon rain hit not even a block out. I had brought a light rain jacket, which I quickly took out of my bag, but I was already quite soaked. As I continued another block, I quickly ducked into a sheltered area to stand and watch the rain soak the ground, rivers already forming on the road making the dirt road that I was going to walk down about impossible. As I looked around wondering what to do, I noticed another small coffee shop not even 50 yards ahead, so I stepped out into the rain again to do my best to get to the shelter of this coffee shop without falling into the river of mud. On entering the shop I realized that, despite my best efforts, my bare-sandaled feet are covered in mud and my pants are soaked, as is my hair and shirt. Somehow my rain jacket had not done all that it was supposed to even in my short walk with this crazy rain.
However, despite the craziness of this monsoon weather, it is good to be home in Nepal again.
My mornings here in Nepal have been brightened with my dear friend Rita’s beautiful smile, as she is working with me an hour each day with my Nepali. She is so strict in me pronouncing words correctly and being the best teacher she can be that she stresses me out a little, but it has been so good. After my language class we then spend time working on her English. She really has been such a blessing to me in my return. Her energy and desire to learn and serve leaves me lacking and desiring to learn from her in this as well. In one of my mornings with her she came in while I was doing my devotions. I quietly put my devotion book down to get ready for my class time with her only to be told not to stop doing what I was doing on account of her. I then reopened my book to finish what I was reading as she sat at my feet eager just to listen to what was being said in English to see if she could understand. She was not able to understand a lot, but I was encouraged by the step in the right direction. A few days later she came to my house to make supper for me and my team leaders. We asked to pray before the meal, and she said, “yes, of course,” and apologized for starting to eat and not respecting our belief enough to wait and pray. Her attitude towards God makes my heart melt, though. I pray that God continues to direct me in this. Each day at the start of class we say what we did to start our day and then what we will do later during the day in Nepali just to work on my past, present, and future tense. The other day she told me that before class she had went and worshipped (did puja) in her prayer room before arriving at my house. I know that this is part of her belief and practice but I literally felt my heart break when she said this. I was able to ask some questions regarding this but did not feel led to push too much. I believe God will open her heart and mind to His love, though sometimes I feel that I take one step forward and two steps back in showing her His love.
In my return I have also been able to spend some time with my English students and work to get reacquainted with their lives and all that I have missed in the past three months. They have all been very open and very curious about what all I did with my time in America. Since this culture is such a family-oriented culture their main question is always about my family and then my work and vacation time. Their order of questions always make me smile as I take the time to tell them about my family and the different things I did when I returned to my homeland.
The other big things going on right now besides me continuing to get over jet lag is my team’s preparation to do our different ministries in an area in more of southwest Nepal and then in the midwest and almost northwest area of Nepal as well. This is a huge opportunity for us to research, teach, and connect with the people. I ask that you please hold us up in prayer for this.
In my time in the United States I mentioned a special prayer request for two special sisters as they struggled in persecution from their family. I have heard from them since I have returned. The circumstance is still hard and very challenging, but they are both still serving the Lord, news that still brings tears to my eyes even as I type. I want to thank each one of you for all of your prayers and continued prayers for these precious daughters of God and sisters in Christ.
The rain continues to beat down outside as I sip my cappuccino and conclude my thoughts here.
The other day in team devotions we talked about Noah and the flood and someone mentioned how Noah and his family probably were a little concerned each time it rained after that 😉 The truth is, many times in the Bible when it talks about rain it talks about a storm and struggle, especially in the New Testament. However, after the storm or even during the storm a miracle often happened. I personally love rainstorms (when I am not stuck in the middle of them). There is something incredible about them to me, and when I reflect on God in the middle of them I find myself so encouraged. There is a God, the Lord of heaven and earth who is all powerful, and nothing and no one can compare to Him.
I ask that you continue to pray for me as I may go through different storms during the rest of my time here. Pray that I press forward to see what God can do and not get overwhelmed by the fact that I am cold, wet, and worn out by the situations that may surround me. I pray for you as each of you continue to go forward to be lights where God has placed you, knowing that he has placed you where you are for a purpose.
The other thing that comes to my mind when I think of rain is the song “Healing Rain” by Michael W. Smith. I am writing the words out that you may be encouraged.
Love and blessings to you all.
“Healing rain is coming down. It’s coming nearer to this old town. Rich and poor, weak and strong, it’s bringing mercy, it won’t be long.
Healing rain is coming down. It’s coming closer to the lost and found. Tears of joy and tears of shame are washed forever in Jesus name.
Healing rain is coming down. So let it fall and take us higher. Healing rain, I’m not afraid to be washed in Heaven’s rain.
Lift your heads, let us return to the mercy seat where time began. And in your eyes I see the pain. Come soak this dry heart with healing rain. And only you, the Son of man can take a leper and let him stand. So lift your hands, they can be held by someone greater, the Great I AM.
Healing rain, it comes with fire so let it fall and take us higher. Healing rain….”