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  • Church-0012

Hey everyone – Emily here!

Boy, am I exhausted. Even after my first night with 9 hours of sleep, rest still taunts me. I guess I should mention that I only slept about 3 hours total on the plane. Well, planes. That’s alright with me though, because I got to watch a few movies I was hoping to catch up on. The airline food wasn’t as bad as I imagined it to be. Aside from that, I briefly got acquainted with the Arizona folks who joined us on our flight in Detroit. It’s been a pleasure serving with them so far, as I can already see their beautiful hearts.

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  • TeamWelcome

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TeamWelcomeHey everyone!

We are finishing up the night and I am up on the roof of one of the buildings so I can get a better signal to finish this post. I’m pleased to tell you that after over 36 hours of travel together, the team has made it safely to CEM! It was the signature CEM welcome and some afternoon playtime when the kids finished their studies.

But here’s the deal: After four (or five) airplanes, layovers, weather related flight delays and more airport food than we want to admit have made us pretty incoherent, but I will share with you that we are all well and bedding down for a night of some very well deserved sleep.

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  • GO!

GO!Hi again! Last time I talked about our team meetings and how they calmed my nerves. In this blog post, I would like to inform you that I’m leaving for India in TWO DAYS. Guess what? The nerves are back again. Right when I thought I was in the clear, Satan threw me a curve ball. I’m currently writing this, not having been able to eat much today. The closer the date gets, the more it hits me that I’m traveling across the world to a country nothing like the one I reside in.

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  • 01 - Dave
  • 02 - Gerry
  • 03 - Phyllis
  • 04 - Jen
  • 05 - Mike
  • 06 - Monique
  • 07 - Renee
  • 08 - Peg
  • 09 - Chris
  • 10 - Emily
  • Window Panes

Welcome back and thank you for coming on this journey with me! Last time, I told you about some of my excitement and some of my angst about going on this adventure. I’m overjoyed to tell you that a lot of that angst was quieted with a couple of meetings. The friendships I’m already developing with the mission team and the founder of CEM, Jaya Sankar, who was visiting Kensington last month, have replaced the fears that gripped my heart so tightly. It began with Jaya telling his story to our Global Outreach team.

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  • Emily - Soon to be world traveler

Editor’s Note: We get asked a lot about what it is like at CEM, but often when we invite people to come and see firsthand the amazing work of CEM and their reply is often, “Oh I could never…” Much of the time, it’s the unknown that is most likely to make a person disqualify themselves; so we decided to “pull back the curtain” and let you hear one person’s story – from the moment they are challenged to take the trip to the months after when God is revealing himself even when they are back in the U.S. You can follow Emily’s story the whole way.

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September 2nd – 27th | Eight Cities

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We are excited to announce that Jaya Sankar will be returning to the U.S. to connect with donors and volunteers in September. A lot has happened over the last year in Andhra Pradesh, including the separation of the northern districts from those in the south where CEM is located into two seperate provinces.

Despite India’s shifting politics, Jaya and the team at CEM are just as committed to serving the poor and under-resourced of Dowlaiswaram. There are going to be several larger events where you can come and hear the incredible stories and tireless vision of CEM’s founder. Check out the schedule and click on a city to get connected!

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Care

This is a banner season in the life of Impact India 360 and CEM, and it all began with the passion of a few that grew into something amazing. Let me tell you the story:

We’ve been connecting with CEM for over twelve years now, and it is uncanny how the team simply addresses social problems as they encounter them, and this one is no different. India has seen exponential growth over the past two decades, becoming a major world economic power seemingly overnight. But one of the downsides of that growth is the dissolution of family norms that have been a part of the culture for thousands of years.

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It’s amazing how a little individual attention and some of the most basic necessities can lift the spirits of a child. Our February team handed out new shoes to the GCH kids, calling each one up by name. Memories of all the high fives and hugs that the team gave them will last far longer in the memories of these kids than the shoes will.

Check it out!

How do you explain it? We travel 8,000 miles to the other side of the world to spend time with children, the elderly and the family of Christ’s Evangelical Mission (CEM). Some are visiitng again. For some, it’s their first time. But all have tears in their eyes on the last day as we walk the children to school. The only way I can explain it is a supernatural, one-way love that came down for us first. Once activated in us, our hearts are expanded to love others – complete strangers really, but knit together by the thread of God’s love and woven into a fabric that is beautifully human and gloriously divine. It is the tapestry of a family crest. It signifies our adoption into God’s family, that we are all sons and daughters of the King, and that our inheritance, abundant blessings of love, peace and joy, is dependent only on love – that we love God and then love others. It’s as simple as that. That is all we did this past week. We loved God and loved others. They loved on us. And we all shared a week that is incomparable to the other fifty-one in the year. My hope and prayer is that we will rediscover this week over and over again as the rest of the year unfolds.

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In our full Indian dress wear, just before MTS graduation. This has been a great team!image