Two prayers at opposite sides of the room. Two very different situations. Many things inbetween.
We are at our month-end Positive Friends meeting. A kind of support group with lots of spiritual inputs.
The meeting started off with prayer and singing. Then a short skit presented by the JSK team which they had performed as a street play last Sunday. Then a message by Giri on encouraging each other - and the encouragement Jesus is to us.
Then time for sharing. One lady shares how her son has changed so much for the better - and that she was praying for a music system - and now she has one and is able to listen to beautiful songs - and then burst into a hauntingly beautiful Marathi song. A man shared how he has received pictures from his estranged son and wife after a very long time - and that his CD4 count is now over 500 (applause). A lady shared how her mother was sick, but now is better. Voices of people with HIV - but speaking out to encourage each other.
After this we broke up into small groups for individual prayers.
One one side of the room two very fidgety ladies. One of them holding a long green plant in her hand. She had picked it up from outside the hospital where she received the medical test results she had done for her sister - the person with HIV. The sister with HIV had moved back and forth during the entire time of the meeting. Now it was time to talk with Dr. Sheba. Both were deeply depressed. Both blamed each other. The hand of the 'healthy' sister was shaking - the green leaves were shivering. Both miserable. Sheba drew a dark heart and a light one. Talked about the difference Jesus could make. Both decided they wanted the change. Both prayed. One simple prayer.
On the other side of the room a man in soiled clothes was asked what we could pray for him. He said that he had everything he needed. The only thing he wanted was to get back to work quickly. His clothes were soiled because he lives on the footpath. A few months ago a passer-by had for some reason come into his hovel on the footpath. Seeing this man lying emaciated and unable to stand, the passerby took the man to his church. The church is where our JSK staff members Rahul and Varsha attend and their pastor brought Mr. Mandir (name changed) to JSK. A course of TB treatment and multiple inputs later - Mr. Mandir is a changed man. He has gained weight. He has his smile (slightly crooked) back. He has a driver's liscence again and is waiting for an auto-rickshaw to be repaired before he can get on the road and earn again. Today he was praying. Praying not for himself - but for Daniel - our longest serving JSK staff who suffers from periodic bouts of psoriasis on his feet. The sight of this pavement dweller praying to Jesus for healing - for one of our staff was precious. Another simple prayer.
We serve a great God - who uses simple - and at times sinful (but oh so readily redeemed if we only take him at his word) people.