Today was a very bittersweet day for me. This morning, I saw my wife Tara off to India, where she will spend the next two weeks serving with a team of people from New Life Church in Glenside, PA. The team, incidentally led by my father, will be serving in a number of capacities at Emmanuel Hospital Association in Robertsganj, helping to equip 300 school teachers in Kachhwa, and teaching lessons to some young local villagers.
First, as to the obvious question I've been repeatedly asked: Why didn't I go? Well, the timing just didn't work out. It was too hard to get away from my job at this time of the year. Simple as that. I visited India in 2005 and I'm looking forward to going back again at some point.
Some time ago, my Dad had asked Tara and I if we were interested in joining the 2010 India team. I knew pretty quickly I wouldn't be able to go. Tara was on the fence. Long story short, there were a number of situations and answers to prayer that made it pretty clear to her that she should go. Over the past month, she's loaded up on her vaccines and taken part in a lot of strategizing with the India team. Throw in the fact that she's trying to prepare for Crosswalk's spring semester at Temple U and that we're in the middle of plans to adopt a baby and it's been a really hectic time for my amazing wife. But the reality is that Tara had been dying to see India -- especially since she married into an Indian family -- and knew that once a baby came into the picture, getting a glimpse of my mother's home country would have to wait for a long time. So pretty soon, the decision became a no-brainer.
I'm excited and encouraged about the work that Tara will be doing for the next two weeks. In the midst of all the grunt work, she will also get to see the Taj Mahal, some local temples, and various other sites. It should be an amazing experience for her and despite the fact that I'm missing her like crazy already, I am beyond excited for what she's going to encounter and learn. You don't spend a few weeks in India and come home unchanged.
The hardest part for me now is just trying to feed myself properly so that everything I eat is not nuked or from a drive-thru window. I know that sounds really lame, but Tara and I established an agreement early on in our marriage: she cooks, I do all the dishes. It's a good system, hasn't failed us yet! Ok, well I guess it failed us this time. Thankfully, some of my neighbors are having me over a few times while Tara's gone. And my friend Daniel, who's moving from central PA to the Philly area, is staying with me until Tara gets back, so we'll be sure to get the bachelor pad thing going.
If you're the praying type, Tara and the rest of the India team could sure use it as they begin this trip. And if you're the cooking type, feel free to drop by...