Tell Me a Story, scattering seeds!

I met two little girls –
Nandini and Ritika. I had met Nandini last year on a neighbourhood prayer walk
and had got talking to her. She and Ritika (her older sister) are the daughters of
Yesu and Kumari. Kumari works as a domestic maid in one of the houses near
ours. I had invited Nandini (at that time I didn’t know she had a sister), to our
children’s Christmas event last year, and she had attended with her parents. I
subsequently met her just once more, because she leaves for school very early in
the morning. The one other time that I met her, I was walking and she was
skipping on the street. It was early in the morning and she tossed aside her
skipping rope and asked if she could walk with me. I told her I would be
delighted if she would. We got talking. She said she was a Christian and went to
a Telugu Church, so I asked her what she knew about Jesus. She knew more
about the decorations in her Church and the events that they had, but could tell
me nothing about Jesus. I asked if she prayed and talked to God. She said she
did that in Church but that she knew no prayers. I told her that she didn’t need
to know any prayers, but could just talk to God. This concept was alien to her. I
then asked her if she would like to pray The Lord’s Prayer with me, so we did
that. She didn’t know it, so I taught it to her in English. That was several
months ago.
I didn’t meet Nandini again until Saturday, August 1st, as I walked up one of the
lanes in our neighbourhood, and came upon her, and her sister Ritika, sitting on
the sidewalk. They called out to me and I stopped, I have to admit a little
reluctantly, as I was enjoying walking out on the streets after so many weeks of
the lockdown.

But I didn’t want to seem antisocial, so I stopped and said hello to the
two little girls. Nandini said, coming right to the point, “Our Church is closed,
and we want to come to the Church in your home.” I opened my mouth to tell
her that we had shifted to Zoom services, until the Coronavirus threat had
passed, but something about her demeanour made me realise I needed to do
something about the need she was expressing. I said, ‘Yes, of course you can,’
and told them what time, and then I moved on.

As I walked up the next street,
my eyes were drawn to my left where, on the footpath, I saw an oleander plant. It was growing up through the cracks in the stones. Nobody had planted it. It
had just come up. Maybe some seeds had dropped there, I thought to myself.
Some weeks ago, I had carefully planted three oleander plants – none of which
had flowered. But this one was flowering beautifully, untended. I didn’t know
what God was telling me (but I knew that He was conveying something
profound) but the sight of the plant moved me, especially since I have been
meditating on scattering seeds. Then I felt God tell me that I had scattered
seeds, and some fell on Nandini’s pure heart and the seeds were growing into
plants. Almost simultaneously, I heard the sound of running feet and saw
Nandini and Ritika rounding the corner at great speed, coming towards me.
They came up breathlessly to me and gave me two phone numbers – their
mother’s and father’s. “Please call us and tell us when to come to your house,
because we want to,” they said.

The next day the two little girls showed up bright and early. Saraswati and
Swapna prayed with them and told them the story (of Jesus feeding the 5,000), which they had never heard, though they were Church going Believers. Saraswati and Swapna also taught
them The Lord’s Prayer in Telugu, and showed them how to talk to God. I
couldn’t spend as much time as I would have liked, with the little girls, but they
didn’t appear to mind at all. They were happy to have Saraswati and Swapna
with them.

On Sunday, August 9th, Nandini and Ritika came over again, eager to learn
about Jesus. This time Saraswati and Swapna told them the story of how Jesus
calmed the storm and how He is Lord over all the storms in our lives. I had
printed out a picture of the story from an online resource, and the two little girls,
taught by the two big girls, had fun colouring it. (Matthew 4:3-20)

From Ruth Khanna in Hyderabad this week!

Matthew 13: “Listen! A farmer went out to plant some seeds. As he scattered them across his field, some seeds fell on a footpath, and the birds came and ate them. Other seeds fell on shallow soil with underlying rock. The seeds sprouted quickly because the soil was shallow. But the plants soon wilted under the hot sun, and since they didn’t have deep roots, they died. Other seeds fell among thorns that grew up and choked out the tender plants. Still other seeds fell on fertile soil, and they produced a crop that was thirty, sixty, and even a hundred times as much as had been planted! Anyone with ears to hear should listen and understand.”

What does God want you to do as far as scattering seed in your neighborhood?

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