I saw college students do motions to songs. I mean, Big House. They were unashamed and if this was worship, they wanted to be a part of it. I saw students sit for over two hours on the ground, worshipping and being taught. There were no side conversations. Their attention did not drift. Because they longed for what they found there. There were very few cool illustrations and no jokes. They didn’t need to be entertained. They wanted to be taught. They wanted to be transformed. It was challenging to me.
Everyone was kind. They took care of us so well. One young man wouldn’t even let me fill my own plate. He always served me, every meal, all week. But in their kindness, they didn’t avoid the truth. If they had a hard question about something I said, they asked it. And if they didn’t get it the first time, they asked again. I was grateful for the atmosphere of truth and love that I found there.
Once the camp was done, a couple of guys took Aaron and I to see some sights in that part of India. We saw some of the ancient carvings and such, but the last stop took the prize by far. The tomb of the apostle Thomas is in Chennai. We went to the church built on the site. It was amazing just to be that close to the stories I’ve always heard. I can’t imagine what it would be like to go to Israel. I was so humbled to be there. It is over 3000 miles from Jerusalem to Chennai, and that’s measuring in a straight line. It must have taken most of his life just to travel there. But in a land where Hinduism reigns, there are sincere Christ followers. And it started with him.
I’m not an apostle, but I can’t imagine having that kind of dedication, that kind of impact. It pushes me to study, to prepare, and maybe to take risks.
And then it was time to come home. I ended up traveling for longer than I was actually in India. But it was well worth it. I hope to return. And I hope that you will join me in praying for these fellow believers, these brothers and sisters across the world. They need strength. They need wisdom. They need courage. And soon, I’m going to find a way for you to give to support this camp in the future. So that’s coming soon. Until then, pray.
And maybe you can let me know what part of the world is on your heart. And what ideas you have about God’s heart for there. I’m looking forward to hearing about it.
9 thoughts on “Returning From Camp In India, Pt. 3”
“They didn’t need to be entertained. They wanted to be taught. They wanted to be transformed.” AMEN to that!
Awesome Awesome Awesome is all I have to say. It is awesome how GOD arranged your schedule to make this work. It is awesome how GOD arranged for your Visa to go. It is awesome how GOD used you to impact people half a world away.
I would say that you also impact those you minister to here in the states as well. I keep hearing the stories of people who you made an impact on while you were in Oklahoma.
Keep up the good work!!
Your dearest friend in Oklahoma,
Oh Lord, would that I could be as hungry for You!! for Your Word!! And that our own youth here in the States would seek You so whole-heartedly.
Thank You Todd,
You say that You are not an Apostle, but I disagree. If the Humility You Openly display in your Lyrics and the Actions that You take to minister to Fathers Flock are not signs of Your Discipleship then I don’t Know What could be. Knowing Your True Flesh and Bone Self and How Far From Fathers Glorious Righteousness You and All Of Us are, and showing us repeatedly how Fathers Loving Mercy Still Embraces Us, drawing us back to Himself with the understanding of our Human Weakness and Frailty through all of Your Music. No I Think That You are Not One To Pat Yourself on The Back Put Please Accept A Great Big One From Miriam And Myself, and Embrace Your Humility All The More By Seeing The Wonderful Work You are doing In Fathers Holy and Heavenly Name. Just Never Rest On Your Laurals and Stop Doing What You Do So Wonderfully…
Oh Yes… and Thank You Again!!!! If You Want To Thank Us In Return, Please Come and Do A Show For Us In New York City. We Need You To Bring Fathers Loving Message To The City That Never Sleeps….
One of my friends showed me part of a video of her wedding (she is from northern India) and she and others were dancing beautifully and so gracefully! I asked her if they were professionals, and how they learned to dance like that… she said everyone in India dances! She had hired a professional to create the movements of all the dances, and one whole evening of her wedding was filled with the entertainment of the family performing dances on stage. I imagine that may trickle over into their worship.
I wondered if you had known that Thomas the apostle was the first to bring the gospel to India! In a lecture in church history I heard, I learned that there is still a church in India that claims it’s roots go back to Thomas! I know it isn’t about who planted a church that is important, but it is about Jesus… but the thing about a church that has direct roots to Thomas is that Thomas had directly been taught by Jesus on this earth! I am very intrigued by it! The more I learn about church history, though, the more I realize that the only thing that matters really is love, and Jesus is the greatest example of love that there is!
You asked about one country the Lord has placed on my heart, truly I must say “the nations.” That does, of course, include India, especially as currently I am in touch with a number of people from that country. (I will be praying for those I know, and those in India.) I have had the opportunity to have connections with people of many countries over the years, and love learning about languages, culture, religion, history, and basically people’s stories! God’s heart is for all to know love. His challenge to me is to imitate Christ, or rather, to let Christ flow from me to all I encounter. The flow isn’t always so easy, but the more I learn about how much Christ loves me, the smoother the flow becomes.
Thank you for sharing about India, Todd! I pray you have more opportunities to minister to these gentle people!
We can learn so much from them. Thanks for sharing.
Firstly,my Jesus is an AWESOME God,the camp was conducted by God alone.And Todd i praise God with all my heart for bringing you here.It was my pleasure to show you around Chennai.And hoping to see you come back and i pray that God uses you even more mightily the next time. At the end of it all we were so humbled by the way God works. Todd, you will always be on our prayers. 🙂
I love hearing about how people of other cultures and traditions worship the same God we do. It seems there is alot we can learn about pure worship vs. being entertained. I often have to check my heart in worship because it’s easy to get excited when loud music is pumping….but am I excited about that or about the object that it points to…Christ.
Great series…and glad it was a fruitful trip.