Bugs and Bucket Baths

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Wednesday, October 26 was a busy day. Anil arrived at our hotel room at 8:30 a.m. with hot tea, sufficiently sweetened and doctored with milk. I shared with him some pointers for organizing and clarifying his quarterly reports that he sends to the Florence Blvd. Church of Christ, for which he was very thankful. We discussed other matters respecting his work that I’m sure will contribute to heightened successes in the future.

At 10 a.m., we made our way the few blocks to the home of Florence and Anil for breakfast. It was at that time that Florence graciously helped Bonnie make adjustments to her sari. However, this time, the underskirt was too loose and could not be easily tightened. Consequently, Bonnie came undone later in the day while at a village Gospel meeting.

Florence accompanied Anil and us to the Gospel meeting in a village 12 kilometers from Chilakaluripet to Irlapadu. Villagers there have two objects of worship on display in the center amidst their humble dwellings – a polka-dotted painted stone standing erect and a certain tree. Residents resent the Christian faith and trouble the half a dozen Christians living there. However, one citizen entered into a contract to sell to the local church a level piece of land on the corner of two dirt lanes. It was there that about 60 people assembled beneath a canopy to hear the Gospel preached. In attendance also were some village leaders who have recently become favorable to the Lord’s church, though they are not themselves Bible believers. A corner stone was erected and dedicated at the site in anticipation of a building to be constructed at a later date. This was also the first time that a public address system had been used in the village by the Lord’s church, which is itself a small stepping stone to reaching the community – megaphone speakers were aimed at the community to herald the Gospel preaching. I preached From Creation Until Now; I had preached an open air meeting in this village immediately adjacent to a Hindu temple two years earlier.

We rushed back to Chilakaluripet to pack for our land trip to Tiruvuru, India; we just had enough time. Florence and Anil traveled with us to Tiruvuru – a three-hour journey. Anil complained that since Bonnie and my arrival, now Florence wants to travel whenever possible with him; we encouraged them to be a team for the Lord.

The hotel accommodations in Chilakaluripet came with hot water for showering and air conditioning by which to sleep. Nice, but the lodging arrangements at the home of Elizabeth and Vijay Babu in Tiruvuru have neither a shower (hot or cold) nor air conditioning. It’s back to bucket and cup bathing. However, each morning we are brought a metal container of heated water to warm the bucket water (there is no electricity at this time of day, and the electric in Chilakaluripet and Tiruvuru cycles on and off throughout the daylight hours). At night, I use the 220 volt, electric bucket heater that I bought before exiting India last year to heat water for bathing.

Our departure and arrival times for the trip to Tiruvuru were strictly according to Indian Standard Time – an hour late leaving and arriving. After supper, Florence and Anil returned to Chilakaluripet, arriving at 1 a.m.

Our first night was rough, especially for me! Ants got into our bed, and me being a bug magnet, they bit me on the upper arm once and bit me multiple times on my forehead and on the bridge of my nose near my eyes. A few misquotes have found me as well, which are my customary foes.

Our schedule in Tiruvuru included two days of classes in the morning and the afternoon, Bonnie and I each teaching our respective attendees. There had been a Gospel meeting scheduled 60 kilometers away for Saturday evening, but it was cancelled because Steve Hogan advised brother Babu not to over schedule us as had occurred in Chilakaluripet. Instead, the semi-monthly Bible Class taught at Tiruvuru was planned where area congregations send some of their boys and men. Worship services for two congregations are also scheduled for Sunday.

Explore posts in the same categories: Good Friends, Gospel Meeting, India, Ladies' Class, Ladies' Inspiration Day, Lectureship, Overseas, Preaching Appointments, Travel

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