Saturday, 22 September 2012

Training Day

A total blender of a day.

Much, much to be thankful for.

Awaking with a jolt - we are doing the training for 19 folks from North India (including 3 from Nepal).

Bible over ginger/elaichi tea.  Sheba calls me back and gets me to eat some bread before I am out the door.

Yesterday's bandh changed todays programme.  Rewrite the schedule.  Print out.

Check mail.  Share that I will not be able to evaluate a 3 year project of a church-based organisation that works with women in prostitution next month because things are just too tight.

Get a call from that organisation.  They ask if I can do it in December.   I say yes.

First strains of the devotions see me scurry into the training room.  Mobile off.

Share about Jesus and the man with leprosy.  Mark 1.40-44.  One of my favourite passages.  Shared it so often.  Still thrills me to see what Jesus did.

Giri takes the HIV testing and counselling session.  Sit in to help a bit.  Lively discussion.  Many questions by the group.  Great group of people from all over - Bihar, Orissa, Delhi, West Bengal, MP, Chattisgarh - and even Nepal!

Duck out to call people for the afternoon meeting with CORINTH partners.

Duck back in to the training.  Get a call that books sent from Hyderabad have arrived.  Arrange for someone to pick them up.

Discussion group time sees me stop by home to check in on the kids.  Doing well.  Home spick and span.  Help them start a video.  They have a holiday because of the Ganesh festival.

See Flavia Paes when I get back.  Hardly recognise her from when she was almost paralysed with osteoporsis.  She is walking around and looking thin but radiant.  A saint.

Discussion group time winds down.  Excellent thoughts flowing by the folks.   I take a short session on the way HIV affects the whole person - and the way the church is called to reach out and heal each part that is broken.

Then another trip home to be with Asha and Enoch.  A quick lunch that Sheba has prepared earlier.  Read part of the last chapter of Robin Hood and the men of the Greenwood with them.  Cracking good tale.

Back to the training.  Afternoon session is special.  Flavia Paes tells her story.  How she has been living with HIV for the past 17 years.  What rejection she received from family and friends.  How God is good to her - even though she suffers.  How she is going to win - and serve others.  Many moist eyes in the room as Flavia speaks fearlessly and clearly about living with HIV.  My eyes needed windshield wipers.

Peter took the next session on keeping the immune system healthy.  I ducked out to do last minute work on a CORINTH presentation.

Tea time - and then we had 4 members of the CORINTH network join us to share about their work.  Wonderful to hear from people working in prisons, caring for the destitute picked up from the streets, serving by helping women out of prostitution and into healing and rehabilitation and acceptance, and caring for people with HIV through home visits.

Thrilled to have Jim and Leena Varghese with us - having just come from the US last month to serve with Bombay Teen Challenge.

Wound up the day's training  with some reflections by the participants.  People were deeply moved by what they had seen and heard.

The joy of meeting dear, dear friends.  Jim and Leena and their lovely sons Nehemiah, Elias and Daniel (5, 4, and 0.4 yrs old) at our home.  Asha and Enoch showed again how mature and kind they are with kids younger to them.  Amazed to hear Jim and Leena's story and see what God is doing to bring them to India as Americans of Indian origin (make that Malayali origin).

Had a lovely meal that Sheba was able to russle up (God bless this amazing woman) with this great family.  Words just kept tumbling out - and the sheer joy of seeing our dear ones sitting with us in the flesh.  Very excited that they hope to move to Thane.

Family leaves and its time to clean up.  Dishes? Done.  Change shirt.  Grab Bible.  Head over the Rolly and Doris's home across the street ... and up on the 11th floor.  Friday Night Bible Study.

Tired but translate Rolly's sharing into Hindi.  Powerful exploration of the lives of Jehosheba and Jehoiada.  Our families matter.  Big time.  May God give us grace to change.  Was thinking of a family whose mutual bitterness is playing itself out in an apparent end-game where one is about to leave and take the kids.

Study over at 10.20 - chatting and snacks afterward.  As we come out of the lift 3 girls from the building walk buy.   6-9 year olds by the looks of them.  "Oh, we have come back early" says one of them "it is only 10.40 PM!"  Urban life.

Back home sweet home.  Check mail.  Kids to bed.  Lights off.

And then sleep doesn't come.  So here I am reviewing the day by the white glow of the computer screen while dogs bark in the darkness outside and the Eicher household slumbers.

Its been a good day.  Tired and happy.  Next day is day 3 of our week-long training in HIV care for  members of churches from across North India.  Sheba and I discussed that one of our trainers need to take a patient for second line treatment.  So I need to take the TB session tomorrow.

Excited. Tired.  Restless.  Glad.

Today was a swirl.

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