Sunday, 20 March 2016

Morning and evening prayers - to start something new!

This morning was special.

We ducked into a small doorway off the main bus-stop at Mulund Colony.  There were about 18 of us, crammed into red plastic chairs in a freshly green painted room.  We were there to pray and dedicate the new centre of the Jeevan Jal Seva.

It was a special joy for me - as it marks the beginning of a new chapter.  Our dear Anil Edwards and Sister Chinnamma Mathew and a wonderful set of folks have banded together to start a JSK spin-off and minister to people living with HIV in the Mulund and Bhandup areas. 

What a thrill so see so many dear ones who we have worked with in Jeevan Sahara Kendra stepping by faith into a new territory of faith.  At the end of last year we challenged Anil to take up the challenge of continuing his reaching out to people living with HIV under a new umbrella.  At the end of November that seemed a distant dream.  But Jeevan Jal Seva was born out of that desire to see living water touch thirsty lives.

We met each month - and were joined by Sam TD, Samir S, Thomas R, Chinnamma and Mathew, Emmanuel I, and Mavis - and each time we met the dream became more of a reality.  Each set of prayers and decisions brought more structure and life to bare bones of Anil's reaching out to the folks he had contacted during his JSK days.

A huge plus was having Ashirvaad Kanti come on board and take the fledgling Jeevan Jal Seva as a project.  This made things legit and brought structure and a financial accountability mechanism.

And so we fast forward to this morning, where we met to celebrate and dedicate the new centre.  Taken on rent.  Taken in faith.  Hope in action.  Future present.  

There is still a long way to go - and if you want to help out by volunteering, giving or praying - please contact Anil at

After the programme was over Anil told me that a few years ago he had had a prayer session with Dad.  Clear as day Anil remembers Dad had prayed for an HIV care centre at every train stop on the Mumbai local line.  Anil saw today's opening of the JJS centre as a direct answer to that prayer.

Some prayers are answered tout de suite.  Others take a life-time to see fulfillment.  Still others generations.


We had another prayer time this evening.  At our home.

This one is for the steps of faith we are taking as a family.  For Lalitpur and all things to do with the HBM Hospital and associated ministries.

We had 25 odd dear friends and fellow travelers with us.

We looked at the lives of people in Lalitpur.  Swathi and Ram, Mohan and Sujatha and Karan and Shyam (all names changed of course).   A girl who was married at 13 but is back in school.  A boy who fell from a tree and broke his back.  A woman who is now getting palliative care for breast cancer after believing a local Baba who said his oil will cure her... 'guaranteed.'   A man doing manual labour through the HBM's community based watershed management work so that he does not have to migrate for work in this time of drought.  A young boy getting nourishment at a mid-day 'feeding club.' A young Bible college graduate looking for his first steps of ministry.   A woman who has made steps of faith after listening to the radio in her remote village.  

We 'met' each one of these folks from Lalitpur via the pictures that I brought back from my second stint there... and then prayed for them and others like them.  

And we prayed for the HBM hospital.  My three visits have convinced me of one thing.  It's made up of some very ordinary folks, who have every potential of doing amazing things, but trip up on some of the very basics.  And that's just me looking in the mirror.

The difference we have is that God is in the mix.  We are not just talking about dedicated folks doing stuff for humanity.  We are talking about the Creator of everything made being personally involved - through us - in an at times shambolic set of situations, and at other times things that border on the rapturous.  

So it is good to pray.  Together.  For the big new start we are on the verge of making as a family.

This time next month we should all be in Lalitpur. 

But many prayers need to be answered before that: Yohan's papers, our move, issues at HBM... the list goes on.

Good thing that our dear Lord not only hears, but answers and walks with us along this journey path.


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