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Spirited Words

See below for a collection of reflections, writings, essays, poems, and other contributions that the ISH community has submitted over the years. We hope you enjoy.

If you are interested in submitting a piece to our blog, please contact Anyang Anyang <anyanganyang@ish-tmc.org>. We publish writing that relates to our mission of enhancing well-being by exploring the relationship between spirituality and health.

 

Dr. Raja Paulraj looks with Love

By John Graham

November 2nd, 2011

In my blog I have tried to keep you up with all the events in the life of little Adam, born with multiple congenital defects in India. In this picture his adoptive father gazes down admiringly at Adam who appears to be beaming up at his new-found father. God has given Dr. Raja Paulraj and his wife Jess a love for this helpless child and I want to continue to share their story, because in a cold and cruel world where a child is abandoned by his biological parents, I think it is worth reporting when a man and a woman open their hearts to provide a home and life for such a child as this. As you may know, plastic surgeons in Chapel Hill, N.C. have agreed to take the child and do reconstructive surgery on his face (cleft lip, palate, and nose deformity), hands (webbing of fingers) and legs (webbing of bones preventing extension of his legs). A story of the gift of Love and it touches my heart. Below is a larger picture of Dr Raja and Adam. And, an email I just received from wife, Jessica:

 

A few nights ago (I think it was the same day I sent out the email

saying we needed prayer for the court date to be adjusted), we were

quite overwhelmed that all that still needed to be done. Moving a

court date seemed impossible and we were just tired to be honest. So

worry naturally consumed our minds. And thoughts of impossibility and

worries of Adams eyes and how much longer we would have to wait. Then

I felt as if the Lord sang to me in my littlest of hearts “take it to

the Lord in prayer” (you know that old hymn, ‘what a friend we have in

Jesus?’…well I put the words at the bottom). We knew there was a

hospital staff prayer night on Mondays so we considered going but then

decided we were too tired. In the meantime, we tried to call the

people involved with the court hearing multiple times, to no avail.

But, after that hymn came to mind, we decided to stop calling and go

to the prayer meeting. We got lost trying to find the chapel (being

the newbies on campus) but do you know what I heard being sung so

loudly, that led us to the prayer meeting?

oh yes. “What a friend we have in Jesus”.

They were singing the line “‎Have we trials and temptations? Is there

trouble anywhere? We should never be discouraged; take it to the Lord

in prayer.”

The same song Jesus sang to me minutes earlier!

Amen.

That is Jesus.

Jesus knows my fleshly tendencies.

Jesus knows I am just like the Israelites.

He feeds me with manna from heaven.

He brings forth water from a freakin stone!

And then I forget. I mumble. I mutter frustrations and doubts and concerns.

I forget the One who has led me thus far.

I forget the One who gave us Adam as a precious gift.

I forget the One who got a surgeon from one of the top 10 US hospitals

to do total care for Adam free of cost.

I forget the One who made clear the chaos of the adoption process.

I forget the One who got Adam a passport.

I forget the One who gave me the precious gift of a husband, best

friend, and love in Raja.

I forget the One who set me free, let Himself be killed on my behalf,

to set me free from my bondage and addictions.

I FORGET.

I forget “what a friend we have in Jesus”

So, Jesus, again,

let me remember.

And in we walked into prayer. 10 or so faithful people there praying

that pray each Mon night. They prayed last week for the passport.

Which God did. Tonight we shared the new concerns of the Court case.

And they prayed.

Then…that very night, we heard from the Court that the date is

adjusted and the adoption could be final by Wednesday (TODAY). So, it

is official. Adam is officially available for adoption, we are his

official parents, his NEW NAME is “Adam Peniel Paulraj” (yep, it even

says it in the passport…which I must say is the cutest passport in

the world). We have the paperwork and all.

“The nations will see your righteousness, and all kings your gloryl

you will be called by a NEW NAME that the mouth of the Lord will

bestow…no longer will they call you deserted, or name your land

desolate. But you will be called Hephzibah, and your land Beulah”

isaiah 62.5

This Passage was read in our wedding. And what a picture of what God

has done for each of us, who believe in His name and plead His blood

only. He has given us new names. John 14.18 “I will no longer leave

you as orphans, I will come to you”. NO LONGER is Adam known as

“abandoned baby”, “deformed baby waiting for adoption papers”, baby

wth possible genetic disorder whose parents abandoned him”. No, this

precious Adam is now Raja’s and my first born son! Everything that is

Raja’s inheritance is now Adams. Raja means “king”…which I think is

just beautiful here. For us who know Jesus are children of God, and

thus, daughters and sons of a King! So Adam is loved, adopted and has

probably hundreds of relatives, familial and in the Church Body,

waiting to meet him (both in India and in America). He is going to be

loved for the extent of his life and he will no longer be known as who

he was before.

Amen.

This is our God.

Let us not forget what He has done!

I have more about prayer in this than I could ever imagine…I cannot

begin to say how many times a wall seemed to be up, I got on my knees,

recorded the prayer need, then the wall came down and the prayer

answered. I know often times God answers us in different ways than we

expect, but in this season, He is teaching me to pray His desires and

to be a persistent one in my prayers (luke 11)

So tomorrow, we are scheduling an emergency visa appt interview. That

is our new request::

-That we can get an interview on Friday or Monday! (most people have

to wait weeks but there is the option of emergency for medical

reasons)

— once we have the visa, we are free to come ASAP!

-PLANE TICKET stuff…we originally had a departure date with Delta on

Nov 22. I have a precious aunt who is going to try and call a few

people once we have Adam’s visa to ask about moving the dates up. As

of a week ago, the prices are the same as what we paid. We are praying

for a miracle from Delta that they would allow this with now

additional fees.

–if any of you have ideas with this little issue, we are

open to ideas/connections;)

-God will protect Adam’s eye. There is evidence of some beginning

damage on his L eye. It is not affecting the cornea yet, but we are

worried

-That God will ease Adam’s poor little bowels. Constipation is not fun

for him. Not having breast millk is quite a challenge. But can I just

say..a new mother in the U.S. (daughter in law of a friend) has

offered her breast milk to be sent to us in the U.S.! Now that is

beautful. We dont know yet if we can do that…but just the thought!

-Continued strength for Raja and I

Love to you all. And I thought these pictures were funny…who says

this baby cant make eye contact? Adam knows whats going on;)

jess (raja and adam too)

From Valley of Vision, Collection of Puritan Prayers…my prayer these

past few days

GRACE ACTIVE

“every new duty calls for more grace than i now possess,

but not more than is found in Thee,

the divine Treasury in whom all fullness dwells.

to Thee I repair for grace upon grace,

until every void made by sin be replenished

and I am filled with all Thy fullness.

May my desires be enlarged and my hopes emboldened,

that i may honor thee by my entire dependency

and the greatness of my expectation”

SONG

What a Friend we have in Jesus, all our sins and griefs to bear!

What a privilege to carry everything to God in prayer!

O what peace we often forfeit, O what needless pain we bear,

All because we do not carry everything to God in prayer.

Have we trials and temptations? Is there trouble anywhere?

We should never be discouraged; take it to the Lord in prayer.

Can we find a friend so faithful who will all our sorrows share?

Jesus knows our every weakness; take it to the Lord in prayer.

Are we weak and heavy laden, cumbered with a load of care?

Precious Savior, still our refuge, take it to the Lord in prayer.

Do your friends despise, forsake you? Take it to the Lord in prayer!

In His arms He’ll take and shield you; you will find a solace there.

Blessed Savior, Thou hast promised Thou wilt all our burdens bear

May we ever, Lord, be bringing all to Thee in earnest prayer.

Soon in glory bright unclouded there will be no need for prayer

Rapture, praise and endless worship will be our sweet portion there.

Sara Moore