Kovilpatti & Kalugumalai – Day 1
Praise the Lord!!! Vijay returned from the hospital. They said he has a kidney stone so they gave him some medication. Fortunately, the stone has moved so he is out of pain; hopefully it will pass. He picked us up at the hotel about 8:30 a.m. and we headed on our way to Kovilpatti & Kalugumalai (I hope you can pronounce those villages better than I can!) Vijay’s wife, Gigi, helped with the interpreting today, and Vijay’s father-in-law, Dr. Sprugeon, will be interpreting for us tonight and tomorrow. What an honor it is for this man to interpret for us! He has written many books in India, and both he and his father have translated many books from Tamil into English.
We arrived at the Pastor’s Conference about 11:00 a.m. I taught on grace and the responsibilities of a Christian, and Will taught about knowing God, not knowing OF Him. Again, this was in a small church in Kovilpatti, and it was packed. We are definitely in the rural parts of India. Afterwards we checked into a little hotel about 20 minutes away, which is the only one in this village. It cost less than $20.00 a night for a double room so I will let your imagination paint that picture. It really wasn’t that bad but we got spoiled at the Hotel Regency in Madurai. We do have A/C so we’re cool.
After the conference, we had many come to us for prayer. We were then invited to the pastor’s house for lunch at about 2:30 p.m. If I didn’t know better I would think they are Baptist. Everywhere we go they want to feed us. They really enjoy having us come to their homes; it is an honor to have Americans as their guests. It is also our honor. They asked many questions about Americans so they got to know us a little better by the time we left. It is so refreshing to see how the Indian families have such love and respect for one another; something that we have lost in America. The pastor’s wife, sister-in-law, brother, daughter and several other family members took off from work just to come and welcome us. Before we left we prayed for Indians and Americans, as well as a blessing on their home.
We got to rest at the hotel until almost 7:00 p.m. before leaving for the outdoor service. There were about 1800 to 2000 people there. This meeting was in Kalugumalai, about a half-hour away. It was great! Josh gave his testimony and I preached a message on salvation. We had well over a hundred people accept Christ through the power of the Holy Spirit. As usual, we prayed for many people after the service. We look forward to going back tomorrow for Karl, Charlie and Will to speak. We are praying for many more to come to know our Lord.
On our way back, we were asked to stop and pray for a man’s business. He and his wife have a match making business, which employs over 300 people. Everything is done by hand. There are women, working in their homes, who adhere the match sticks to boards and dip them in the chemicals to make the matches. He, also, has people who fold the match boxes and put the matches in them. He is a strong Christian who supports his church. He told us that, for the last two months, he has had no orders for his matches so he wanted us to pray for his business. We all circled him and his wife while Karl prayed for Him, his wife and his business. They were so thankful that we stopped by to pray for them. If you would take a few minutes and pray for them, also, we would appreciate it. We asked him to tell his pastor so we will know when God touches his business.