Friday, November 23, 2012

Thanksgiving Day 2012

Thanksgiving is a favorite holiday for the Pratt family!  We have spent quite a few Thanksgivings here in India.  Of course, it is not a holiday in India, but we enjoy sharing the history and meaning of Thanksgiving with neighbors and church people.  Usually the planning for the meal starts weeks in advance, so that I can search the shops to find the ingredients that I need, and then revise my menu when the ingredients are not available!  We try to make the meal as traditional as possible, though there are always some traditional foods that we do without. We were not able to have a turkey this year.  Brian found a local turkey, but they wanted to charge about $6/lb.  This, for a turkey that only weighed about 6 or 7 pounds, in other words, skin and bones!  So, we decided to have pork this year. 

Here is our Thanksgiving menu:
Mashed Potatoes
Green beans w/bacon
Homemade bread
Sweet potato casserole (for some reason the sweet potatoes here are greenish, instead of orange..weird)
The girls were a big help to me in the kitchen this year.

Raspberry Pie
Apple Crumble pie
Pumpkin pie (this is the first year that I've found real pumpkins here..Brian happened to see one in the
market one day.  I'm sure they've always grown them here, but I never saw them or knew what to call them in order to ask someone!  The skin is not the bright, orange color that we are used to for pumpkins, but the inside is orange and it has a pumpkin taste.  So, for the past couple months, I've been cooking and mashing fresh pumpkins and freezing it to use in pumpkin bread and pumpkin pie.)
Cookie Dough bars
Eskimos cookies
Sugar cookies
Thin Mints
Chocolate/orange cookies
A team effort

Coloring their Thanksgiving pictures

The completed art work
 Thanksgiving is an exciting and fun-filled day, but there is always a tinge of sadness at being so far away from our families at this time of year.  Thankfully, we were able to Skype with both sides of the family on Thanksgiving Day.  (Although, it was not necessary for my brother to share with us that they were having cheesecake for dessert!)

Happy Thanksgiving!

Friday, November 16, 2012

Church Anniversary

November 2-4, we celebrated the 6th anniversary of Grace Baptist Church in Mohali, with a three day mission conference.  The theme was, "To God be the Glory".
Pastor Babu, from Guragaon, preached stirring messages, dealing with using our life to glorify the Lord. 
Boys singing an action song during Sunday School

The crowd on Sunday morning

Naomi and Melody playing special music
Some of the believers from the Zeliangrong Fellowship (our Manipuri church in Chandigarh) joined us on Sunday morning.  There are some great singers in this group.

We were so blessed to see some of our college students step up and do a lot of the cooking (and cleaning up!) for the meeting.  There have been many times when our family has shouldered most of the work for the church.  It is exciting to see our church people come together to work for the Lord.   We believe that the church is a family, and each one has been given gifts by the Lord to use in His service.  (The food was good too!)
The Lord truly blessed with a wonderful three days of meetings.  He spoke to many hearts, including mine.  On Sunday, during the preaching, I was sitting on the floor, surrounded by our church people, those from the Mohali and Chandigarh churches.  We have people in our church who cannot read or write, people who do manual labor for a living, college students pursuing various degrees, some pursuing PhD's in various field, some who work in offices for Multi-national companies.  As I was sitting there, the Lord spoke to my heart, that I was exactly where He wanted me to be, living and serving among these people at this time.  Very powerful....

Friday, November 2, 2012

A Sunday with the Pratts

Ever wonder how we spend our Sundays?  For us, Sunday is one of the busiest days of the week.  Melody asked me last week..."Some people say Sunday is a day of rest, is that in the Bible?" Hmmm... To consider Sunday a "day of rest", would not be true for us.  But, Sunday is a day that we spend in serving the Lord, and worshiping with His people.  So, here's a run down of our Sunday activities.

6:30am   Time to wake up!  At least for Mom...
7:30am    Kids wake up 
"I'm ready for church, Mom"...Hmmm...the shawl is nice, but maybe you should change out of the pj's!

7:45am    Brian leaves to go to Tira village.  We had a morning service going on here for about a year.  There were some problems here, and at this point only one older lady is faithfully attending.  So, Brian goes to her house for prayer, and then brings her to the church in Kumbra for the service.
Sunday is usually a quick breakfast for us.  It's the only day of the week we eat cold cereal (cornflakes, special K, or granola are the only options), or we might have quick bread or muffins that I made on Saturday.
Practicing a song for special music
 8:45-9:00am  We leave for S.S. and church in Kumbra
Waiting for our ride to church.

9:15-1:00pm  Sunday School and church service in Kumbra at Grace Baptist Church
Bro. Mohammad leading Sunday School opening

Sunday School class having a sword drill.  Bro. Mohammad teaches the adults and teens, and I teach the children in S.S.

Alyssa occupies the small children during S.S. time

Church service

 1:30pm  Reach home for a quick lunch.
2:15  Leave to go to the Chandigarh service.  Brian has recently started being interim pastor for this group of people from the North East of India.  Most are college students or young working people.  This is a different type of ministry for us.  Pray for these young people, as many are from Christian families, but have not truly been saved.
 2:30 - 4:30pm Manipur Service
 5:00-5:15pm  Arrive home from Manipur service
5:45pm   Back to Kumbra
6:00pm   Bible games/Trivia/Sword drill for the youth
6:45-8:30  Evening Service at Grace Baptist Church
9:00pm Reach home to eat supper and get to bed after a long day.