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Friday, February 15, 2013

My dear brother, Joe

It has been about 4 months since returning home from Bangladesh and the country and the people are still deep in my heart. Even people I met in Kolkata over a year ago are still deep in my heart... maybe it has some thing to do with that they are all Bengali. Who knows? Bengali people must just be so warm and loving so, when you meet them they suck you in and you love them forever. What do you think?

I have decided I need to get back to talking about the Bangladesh mission tripI went on in October. I am going to share about another friendship, who is more like a brother. Today I am going to tell you about my brother Joe. Joe is Mortuza's blood brother but, my brother in Christ. Joe and I met in Chittagong and I never thought what an impact he would make on me but, on the second day in Chittagong he translated my Testimony. First off it is very hard to share my testimony because, it is a very personal part of me that is being given to my listeners and I then wonder... when they receive this personal part of me, what are they going to do with it? So, having Joe translate my story for the first time in Bangladesh was very special. Not only was he a listener as well but, he was going to translate it to the best of his ability the same way I shared it. And if you didn't know... 1 English word translates to 5 Bengali words... it is not easy. But, I believe Joe did a wonderful job! After I was done sharing my testimony all I wanted to do was hug Joe and he told me "I do not have a problem hugging you but, because of our culture it would not be right." Yay, that hurt a bit. :)

This is Joe and I after lunch. See he did touch me a little... :)
The NO touching was kind of hard for me. I really learned how much I touch and how much I need to touch. Do you ever think about how much you touch? When you are restricted and have to consciously think about not touching it is hard and makes you very aware. For instance... you had to think about where you sat and how close you would be sitting to a male, or if we were praying for a male and laying hands on him we had to make sure it was okay first, etc. But, truthfully they were all okay with it. We took a group picture and all the men were very close to us women... I was very surprised, but I think they liked us. ;)

Joe sharing his vision for his people.
Before Joe left us to return home to his family he shared his vision to Uncle Gil and Brother Brian. Joe has a BIG vision for his Bengali people, who are homeless, for the orphans, the oppressed, and the sick. He has such a BIG tender heart that and he completely took Andrea and I into his heart that overwhlemed us to tears. His young man has a BIG godly vision and all he needs is support- money to make God's kingdom in Bangladesh grow and flourish. When my brother left us in Chittagong I cried. My heart was unitied with his and all I wanted was to be with him more and learn more about him and his vision. All I wanted to do was hug him and thank him for everything, but we could not hug, but I could cry like a baby. ;) Nothing is more amazing than what God does in a short time with fellow believers and bringing them so close.

3 brothers- Salauddin, Mortuza, and Joe
My heart is completely united with the believers in Bangladesh and by God's grace I will be returning in the following trip in October. I will be having a fundraiser to help me return, so keep an eye out.

Here is a glimpse into our trip to Bangladesh

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