Friday, May 14, 2010

Freeset Bible Study

One of the highlights of my trip to India was the great privilege and honor of being able to lead the morning devotion time for the women of Freeset. As I spoke to the women through an interpreter I saw at times sympathy in their eyes. They were connecting with me and were getting what I was saying. I was overwhelmed by God’s grace and goodness toward me. He has shown me His great love and trust. He called me to women even before I lost my sweet Bronner, and since my little one has been in heaven I have spoken to numerous women’s groups here in Alabama and Georgia. But, to be able to give a talk to women on the opposite side of the globe was just not on my radar, but it was amazing. I am so very thankful to God for that opportunity. I basically said to them the same things I say here just in a little more condensed and simplified version. Plus, I wanted to give them the courage to stand up against evil. There seems to be a prevailing fear of the gods there in Calcutta especially of Kali, the god of death and destruction. I wanted them to understand that one day death will be no more, that this world is not our home, and that one day all of our suffering will cease IF we know the Lord Jesus as our Savior. Here is what I said on Thursday morning at 10 a.m. to 150 Bengali speaking Indian women:

Good Morning, friends. It has been so good to be with you this week. We, Americans, came here from very far away because of our great love for Jesus, and because you are his children, we love you, too. God created each and every one of you. He is the one who knit you together in your mother’s womb. He knows your name, and even knows how many hairs are on your head. He knows your every thought, and He cares about you. He knows every tear you’ve ever cried, and one day He will wipe them all away.

I have a little baby who is in heaven with Jesus. I was very sad when he died. He was two years old and very beautiful, but God comforted me in my grief and spoke tenderly to me. I was very happy before my baby died, but God spoke to my heart and told me that happiness isn’t as important as holiness. He wanted me to be holy like him, set apart for the good He could do in this world through me.

He told me to rise up and stand on my feet. He was going to send me into the world to teach about Jesus. He wants all people to turn from darkness into the light. He wants the world to know that evil will not always be so they will be brave enough to stand up against it. Jesus is more powerful than any evil. Even his name is more powerful. We say the name of Jesus to cast out darkness. He is that mighty.

There is evil in the world today, but it will not always be here. God, the maker of heaven and earth, will cast out all evil spirits and all those who follow them. And death will be no more.

One of Jesus’ apostles was given a vision of that time. John said in Revelation, Chapter 21:

“Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning nor crying nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away. And he who was seated on the throne said, ‘Behold, I am making all things new.”

There is coming a day when everything will be made new and good and clean, and there will be no more death or dying or evil or sin. But, only those who worship the one true God will be there. We must accept Jesus in order to live forever on that beautiful new earth. Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life no one comes to the father except by me.” Jesus paid the price for our sins by dying on the cross for us. He shed his blood for you, because He loves you very, very much. And He grants to you eternal life forever in his presence.

And, if he loves you that much, you can trust him, even when bad things happen. Our bible tells us all things work together for good for those who love God, even the bad things. We can endure any hardship, difficulty, or pain because we know that our life here on earth is only a short time, and then we go to be with Jesus where he is, and after some time in heaven, God will make the earth new again, and we will live here with him forever.

So, trust and believe in God. Don’t rely on your own understanding, but wholly lean on Jesus and his teaching in the bible. He will lead you down right paths. He has already led you here. He has given you this job, and he will give you so much more if you wait with patience for it. He is good and will do good to you.


  1. I am so glad you were able to minister to those people and experience India. I am heartbroken that you did not enjoy Kolkata more. My son was born there and we experienced a 2 week trip to get him last May. I don't agree that Kolkata is the worst of India. We traveled to other cities and the idolatry and poverty is all there too. I actually found Kolkata to be beautiful - it all depends on your perspective. Yes, the physical and spiritual poverty is undeniable but the graciousness and spirit of the people is commendable in light of the resources they have. I do want Kolkata to rise out of their poverty but I also want people to know that it is more than some dirty or nasty city as some people deem it. Hopefully you can find some of the beauty there too :)

  2. Dear Sheri.
    Again , your words are God
    breathed and Holy Spirit coated. I am so grateful that you have had the experience in India. You may be dreaming India at night. I had the great priveledge to go in 2005, and it was awesome. I also was so blessed to experience God's great power, and love for all His people. But, standing on a rooftop court in Hanamakonda India, leading a morning devotion with the team, was really an incredible moment for me, as I was reminded where He had brought me from, and How ONLY God could do this! Keep ministering, and I continue to be saddened by your pain, yet encouraged by your obedience to acquiese to holiness. Oh how Bronner is honored and God ultimately Gorified through it all. Your family continues in my prayers, Debbie DeRubeis

  3. Amy, I absolutely agree that the people of India are some of the most beautiful people I have ever met inside and out. They were so friendly and loved to be talked to, touched, and given attention. However, many of the people we met there were discarded from society and not much was being done to help them internally. However, Christians from around the world have come to Kolkata to pour into it the light of Christ. Our friend who has lived there for 15 years working and helping in the poorest parts of Kolkata told us as we were walking down by the Hooghley River that he had found a woman lying there on the railroad tracks one day who had the top of her head missing and that her brain was showing through her skull. Maggots were eating the infection around her head wound. She had been left there to die. When Kerry saw that she was still alive, he tried talking with her, and she could talk. She pointed him to her family who Kerry then went to inquire of. He asked if he could take the woman to the Mother Teresa Center for Death and Dying. They told him that he could. They had put her out knowing that she would probably die soon anyway, and at that point she was just a liability to them. I am not saying that that is wrong. I am just saying that poverty causes people to do things that they wouldn't normally do. Kerry put the woman in a taxi and drove her to the center. She kept asking him, "Do they have good food there?" That was her main concern. She was so hungry. When he went to visit her, she told him that, yes, they had good food there, and she was happy. Amy, it's not that I don't think the people are good. It's that it is obvious they need help. That is my point in writing all of this about them. I hope to inspire others to go and see for themselves something so different from our way of life that it is shocking not to demean them in anyway but to help them. I hope you will go back and read everything I wrote from the beginning of the trip until the end of it. There are six blogs in all. And, if you have gotten the impression that I did not "enjoy" India, then you may be right. Enjoy is certainly not the word; however, love may be. I felt a great love for the people I met there and hope for something better for them than idolotry, homelessness, disease, and the like, but I will say that I didn't go for a vacation and didn't see any of the touristy or nice parts. We went to work with the poor and that was my experience. You may have seen something completely different. Of course, I try to look at everything from God's perspective, and, again, there is good work being done in Kolkata, but there is much more to do. I am thankful for people like Mother Teresa who made Calcutta's great needs known to the world and to the people today who are giving their lives to serve in Kolkata with the poorest of the poor.

  4. Sherri,

    My heart breaks for the people of India. I have had a deep connection to the country since childhood - put there by God alone because it does not make sense. I do think that I am more protective of my son and it hurts me to hear some of these things knowing that he will read them one day too. I understand they are real - I saw the same things and my son could have been one of those beggars if his birth mother had not made the sacrifice she did. We experienced children begging at our windows for food, lepers, naked children with bloated stomachs but I also want people to understand that in the midst of that poverty and despair there are positive things. It can take a lot for people to find it but it is there - the resourcefulness of the people and how the city runs despite that lack, the graciousness of the people, the rich history, some of the great leaders, etc. I obviously can't turn my back on the hopelessness either but I guess I just want others to know that there are some things that are intriguing about India. I know the purpose of your blog was to talk about what you personally experienced and I commend your honesty. I just want people to know that those things should not deter them from going to a third world country. When we compare everything to the US, we are extremely blessed. I also consider Mother Teresa a hero and she had that love for the people that you have :) The visit to her home and orphanage was my favorite part about the trip. I hope you get to go back again. I did not mean my comment to be critical at all - I hope you are not offended!

  5. Sweet Amy, not at all. I am so proud of you for being obedient to the Lord's call on your life to minister to the people of India. You obviously have a deep connection to the people there. Your son is living proof of that. I agree with you completely that there are certainly positive things about India. The people are wonderful and eager to hear the gospel. It is my prayer that the light of Jesus will spread throughout that barren land for the sake of the precious people who live there.