For a time today, there was a foreign quietness in my soul. I had just come from an encounter with the magnitude and reality of God in people. A woman, they call her “Christa Mum”, invited us into her home for Chaï. This is a highly respected Christian woman of faith in the community here in north India. She and her late husband came to Bombay in 1964 on medical missions from East Germany for Operation Mobilization or “OM.” They stayed.
Their lives have been committed to The Lord and in serving the Indian people. They ended up in Mussoorie where they built a humble but oh-so-cozy home lined with walls of books and a piano that lives among bound wisdom (how the 8 “Coolis” got this piano into her home was an engineering feat from the dark ages). She has hosted hundreds of families, singles, students, pastors, and faithful people seeking direction in her home over the years never asking for anything from them.
Christa is 82 now and has the spirit and health of a 60 years young woman. Now widowed, She maintains the cliff-side home with the assistance of a loyal helper, “Vicki.” She hikes up and down the mountain path to her home from the road at least once a day, grows plants in her roof top greenhouse and has a constant stream of visitors seeking to spend time with her – praying, chatting, and sharing God’s Word. She is an exemplary example of how God uses and blesses those who selflessly give of themselves for The Kingdom. It was so intense to sit at a table over tea and have the wisdom of such a woman poured into me through prayer and reading of scripture. I was catapulted into another dimension of what it means to truly live for Christ and sacrifice yourself for The Lord.
Carl has known Christa for five years and has stayed at her home many times with his Nepali contact.
In the same breath of time, only an hour later, I found myself staring at an oversized crayola laden gold statue of Buddha. We were at the temple of Buddha and at the top where worshipers and devotees hang their prayers written on flags so that their gods can carry them away with the winds. We lingered there for a while.
While on our descent from the mountaintop worship place, I am mesmerized at the lack of care and pure neglect of this shrine to their god. The crumbling concrete railings and stairs, the trash strewn around carelessly with no respect for the purpose for this place, wild dogs aimlessly nudging at wrappers for a scrap left behind, monkeys jumping to and fro, and piles upon piles of dog and monkey feces. A local boy follows us around asking for “donations” and another who’s selling prayer flags.
It is a fractured reflection of what the god that these people worship is – broken and shattered, unclean and without order. That is why when Christ comes into the lives of souls living in a worldly nation, cleanliness and order slowly materialize. We serve a God of order and direction. The One whom we serve created the mountains that I wake up to today – the awestruck wonder of this world can only be understood when we grasp the infinite power of the God who loves us and has created us for His Glory.