Monday, July 16, 2007


SUNDAY -- A day of rest and reflection for some. I got to start the day with a time of fellowship with my brothers and sisters at a small congregation which meets at the home of Jolly & Suma. They open up their home each Sunday for a service that is really wonderful. Andi & Sheba Eicher and their kids Enoch & Asha (who love to laugh! -- and I seem to bring this out in them.....) make this their home fellowship. Andi is one of the Elders. I loved the simplicity of the worship and praise and also the way each person had a chance to bring a word or suggest a song. Andi brought us to the Lord's table and I was able to bring a short message about the Disciples and Jesus on the Road to Emmaus. We ended by singing "How Great Is Our God." It was simply a time to reflect on our lives and the life of Jesus!

Suma prepared a really nice meal for us and we enjoyed a time of fellowship -- We had to head back to Dr. Stephens place so I could take care of some things before I met with my friends ASTRAVIDH. So Jolly graciously drove us back to Dr. Stephens place and I was able to take a short rest and then my friend Santosh picked me up on his motorcyle.

Now I know when I write this - people are going to be thinking that I am testing the Grace of God -- but I rode over on the back of Santosh's motorcyle to meet the rest of my friends in the band ASTRAVIDH. I met this group of guys about a year and a half ago. I was asked to share my story in an outdoor setting that was kind of evangelistic - -and they had sung a couple songs before hand. They were just starting out and I had a great time of talking with them and the Lord just knit our hearts together. Sunny who is the lead singer and I had a chance to hang out a bit and as a group they had been asked to participate in a concert on Christmas Day -- they were going to sing and do this skit/drama. The concert was fun -- there were a couple thousand people and I got to sing a couple songs and share about Jesus -- since it was His birthday and all! I really felt that first and foremost these guys had great hearts and wanted to say something in their music. I encouraged them and they have been going at it ever since. They have grown musically and continue to strive for a greater level of excellence -- in their country they are moving into new territory. I love to encourage those who walk that path.

Anyway -- I was invited to a rehersal with them. Santosh (Bass Player) picked me up on his motorcyle and we rode through town to the otherside where they lived and rehearsed. The Rehersal place is an apartment that is used by Santosh's dad as an office during the day and a rehersal place at night. The guys in the band, Sunny (right in photo) (Guitar - Lead Vocals), Santosh In back (Bass), Ben (left in photo) (Drums), James (center w/guitar) (Electric Guitar) -- all welcomed me and I got a chance to hear how things have been going. Typical of artists starting out -- struggling between working the job that pays the rent and then getting time to rehearse, get equipment, write material -- figure out ways to record it -- etc., the story is the same around the world. This is actually encouraging in one way -- because it is another way that I can encourage people in another sector of life. I heard their plans, listened to some of their new material -- like it -- they have still a ways to go but hope to have the rest of their songs written and ready to record by February of next year. They told me that I was evidently instrumental in them making a commitment as a group and moving to the next place in their musical aspirations -- a great place of honor in the lives of young people.

We had great talks, had some tea and got to sing together -- I met the rest of Santosh's family as we prepared to leave and then it was a ride on the motorcyle again -- only this time it was 9:30pm at night and the ride on the roads are way more exciting at this time -- but I will spare you the details. It is now the next day so you know I survived!

Preparing for some business meetings, a 3 1/2 days retreat this weekend which is going to be really exciting and more to come..........stay tuned!


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