Sunday, December 24, 2023

Merry Christmas from India

What an amazing joy to be celebrating Christmas in our own flat (apartment) in India!   Pat and I are so excited to be able to split our time between India and America. Plans are to use India as our base for missions in South East Asia, then avoid the heavy monsoon season by spending the summer months in the US.  

The weeks leading up to Christmas have been busy with Christmas outreaches. It's a perfect opportunity to talk about Jesus in this Hindu nation.  Children at the tea garden village of Baginbari prepared a special program with songs and dancing.  They were given toys, groceries for the family and a snack box to enjoy.  

Seven families hosted evening gatherings in their homes - carols were sung, the story of Jesus was shared, food was enjoyed.  Nepali people love to sing and dance - the video is a little rough - but captures their enthusiasm. The first few seconds do not have sound.  Regardless of the setting - a humble village with a dirt courtyard or a beautiful home - the love of Jesus was shared and hearts were encouraged. 

Thank you for being a part of what God is doing in India.  Your love, prayers and support makes it possible for us to be the hands and feet of Jesus.  May the following excerpt from my Christmas message encourage your heart as you celebrate His birth - and receive the precious gift of Jesus.

Christmas blessings from India - Gary and Pat 


Christmas can be a discouraging time of year for some, because of a loss of a loved one, a failed marriage, loss of a job, poor health or a child who has not come home.

The good news is that you have a reason to rejoice because God has four amazing gifts for you. These gifts are not wrapped in ribbon and bows, but are manifested in Jesus Christ, who is the greatest gift you can ever receive.

Isaiah 9:6 reads,” For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”

  1. Jesus is 'Wonderful Counselor.' His counsel is unfailing and flawless, perfectly suited to the situation, always practical and wise.  

  2. If you need a miracle, Jesus is your 'Mighty God' who is for you and wants to be invited to help you fight the visible and invisible battles you experience.

  3. When you need comfort, Jesus is your 'Everlasting Father.'  Talking about God as a Father brings complicated emotions for some. But the love of your Heavenly Father is unlike any love you could ever know.  A Father, who loves you unconditionally and will never leave you nor forsake you.

  4. If you are overwhelmed by life, Jesus is your 'Prince of Peace.' True peace is not the absence of a storm.  True peace is found in the presence of God, and you can have peace in your soul no matter what your circumstances might be.

This Christmas Season receive God’s great gift “ us a child is born, to us a son is given.”  He is your 'Wonderful Counselor', 'Mighty God', 'Everlasting Father', and 'Prince of Peace.'

Whatever you are going through, Jesus is exactly what you need!    

Tuesday, December 5, 2023

Christmas is Outreach Time

Christmas is outreach time in this Hindu nation.  They worship many gods - millions in fact. Many Hindus recognize Jesus as a good teacher or one of the gods.  As we share the true meaning of Jesus' birth at Christmas time - our prayer is that their spiritual eyes will be opened and they will receive Him as Lord and Savior.

What does this look like?   Families from the church invite their neighbors and host a night of carols, food and fun.  If their home is small, the party will happen around a bonfire in the yard.  Christmas songs will be sung in 5 languages - Hindi, Nepali, Bengali, Adavasi and English.  I volunteered to be part of the Carolers and am working to learn the songs!  Whew.  I'll probably be humming along for a lot of them.

During the evening Gary will be sharing the story of Jesus - from the manager - to the cross and the power of the resurrection.  We have this hope - when we receive Jesus we are assured of salvation and now have the amazing privilege to actually have a relationship with God almighty.  We know that God loves us and cares for us; hears and answers our prayers.

Hinduism and other religions do not offer any assurances that their prayers, incense, offerings, good works, etc. will actually be accepted.  There is very little hope.  That is the difference between religion and relationship.

Scenes from Christmas 2019
Notice the snacks!
Volunteers from Master's Touch Church have been loving on the children at the tea garden village of Baginbari for almost six years now.  We've shared reports and photos in previous blogs. Click here to see the report from Christmas 2019.  

This year's Christmas outreach party will bless 16 mothers & young married women and 55 children at Baginbari. At a second location, the party will bless an additional  20 children.  They will receive groceries for each family, toys for the children, beauty products for the mothers, and a small box of Christmas treats for everyone.  (Slice of cake, a samosa, and a delicious crunchy snack called Bhujia )  There will be singing and sharing the Christmas story in their tribal language: Adavasi. 

India's Prime Minister Modi’s BJP Party has been pushing Hindu Nationalism and we have noticed that people have become much harder to the Gospel than in previous years.  

Will you join us in prayer for these outreaches?  As you prepare your home and your hearts to celebrate  Christmas, would you lift up these lost souls who will be hearing about Jesus' love - many for the first time.  Agree with us for:

  • Hearts to be dramatically touched by Holy Spirit
  • The Love of Jesus to penetrate their hearts so that they receive Him as Savior
  • Christians in India to stand strong and boldly share their faith in Jesus in spite of opposition
Your love and prayerful support make it possible for us to be here.  You are part of all we do - and we are so grateful.  This Christmas, may you find the joy that only Jesus can give.  

Praise the Lord! How joyful are those who fear the Lord and delight in obeying his commands.  They share freely and give generously to those in need. Their good deeds will be remembered forever.    They will have influence and honor.  Psalm 112: 1 & 9 NLT

~ Journey with Joy ~ Pat

My morning meander lead me down a new path
 that opened up to this beautiful view with the
 foothills of the Himalaya's in the distance.