Jeyachandran Family

Nut Lady!

06 Jun 2013

Today I (Christine) went to the nut shop to buy nuts to make peanut butter. This is how the conversation went.

Christine: Can I have some nuts?
Nut Lady: Sure. Those children must be from a childrens home. (They were well dressed that day).
Christine: No they are mine.
Nut Lady: They must be adopted then.
Christine: No, they are mine.
Nut Lady: But they don't look anything like you.
Christine: They look like their father.
Nut Lady: Yes, they are all looking very similar, him too(to Samuel).
Christine: These two are twins.
Nut Lady: NO, that cannot be. She is much taller. She must be older.
Christine: No the shorter one is older.
Nut Lady: So there is another foreigner who comes here and buys peanuts too. To make peanut butter.
Christine: Could be a friend of mine. Not sure.
Nut lady: Is she your sister?
Christine: No.

I was not too bothered at the time by the conversation but I was glad the kids didn't seem to follow it. It bothered me more in retrospect. Most Peruvians ask me if they are my children so her comments did not come as a shock but her persistent bluntness surprised me.

How must it feel to have adopted kids/ be adopted - having such blunt conversations all the time! Next time I notice an adoption I will hold my curiosity in check.

We're back

04 Jun 2013

We're back in Arequipa, Peru after 3 months in Australia.

It's great to be part of our small groups on campus again. Let me introduce in the photo: Erick, Marisol, Gladys and Elisabeth from our Engineering small group. We meet together to study the Bible, share our lives and pray for each other.

Pray that these small groups will help students to get to know Jesus better and build a strong community that will reach their university and beyond.

Black Hawk Down - When helping hurts

21 Mar 2013

While waiting for Christine at a cafe I casually browsed their second-hand bookshelf and picked up a book called "Black Hawk Down". After reading a couple of pages I couldn't stop reading it.

Black Hawk Down is a gripping true story set in Somalia in October 1993. After a years of civil war and a devastating famine the UN moved in to distribute food and to help stabilize the country. It became very clear that the millions of dollars in food aid pouring into the country would never reach the people in most need when the country was controlled by roving armed gangs. How could poverty be alleviated in these difficult conditions? For some time there were unsuccessfully attempts to engage the warring clans in peace talks. Then on the afternoon of the 3rd October 1993 the US led a daring daytime mission that hoped to begin the road to stability in a country that desperately needed it. The plan was to abduct two senior leaders connected with a Somali warlord and bring them to justice.

Things went wrong! What was supposed to be a quick two-hour mission turned into a bloody battle with hundreds killed and more than a thousand injured. Why didn't the Somalis understand that this team of soldiers were there to help ultimately bring peace? Thousands instead turned up in force, forgetting their tribal differences and united to fight against the US soldiers. The result was terrible carnage. The mission was a success as far as capturing two leaders of this Somali warlord but did nothing to advance peace in the country or alleviate poverty. It created a bitterness on all sides and to many Somalis, a deeper level of poverty.

What went wrong? Why didn't this UN intervention bring real change? Almost 20 years later the civil war continues. Why are people in Somalia no better economically and possibly worse off than before?

Another book titled "When helping hurts" deals with the question "How to alleviate poverty without hurting the poor… or yourself". I like the book because it begins with a Biblical foundation. There is one important concept that runs through the book. Poverty is not just an economic problem with an economic solution. There may be some deep underlying problems and economic poverty may be just one of the symptoms.

More to read:

 

Now it's your turn

What do you think is an underlying problem in Somalia? Is it possible to help?

God is working in Australia

17 Mar 2013

It's been great to visit churches and share what God is doing in Peru. It's also been great to hear what God is doing right here in Australia. Recently we visited a church where we saw 4 baptisms. Three of those baptised were from a Middle Eastern country that is hostile to Christians and is closed to missionaries. Praise God that here in Australia it's possible to reach many people who would be incredibly difficult to reach in their home country.

Samuel visits the hospital

17 Mar 2013

Photo taken a day earlier with the usually happy Samuel

Our little 2 year old Samuel said "I'm thirsty" and then reached and grabbed a water-bottle from his mum. Rather than getting a proper hold on the bottle, it fell. The metal water-bottle was full of water and fell from above Samuel's head onto his big toe. He cried and he cried! There was a bit of blood and almost immediate bruising. Feeling the weight of the water bottle I was sure Samuel had broken something. Forty minutes later he was still crying unconsolably till Christine realised that he wanted water. He was better after drinking some water and a milkshake.

Samuel's Foot X-Ray

That evening, still in a bit of pain, Samuel and I headed to the hospital. He had an X-ray and fortunately he had no damaged bones. He was just given some antibiotics to prevent infection under his toe-nail.

With curious little kids there are so many things that can go wrong. It is the grace of God that they survive to our adulthood. Can you share a story from your childhood or of your own kids?

Goodbye Arequipa, Hello Australia

01 Mar 2013

We said goodbye to our friends in Arequipa. We had a little farewell with our university group and our pastor. On the morning of our flight, Hans and Martha from our mission prepared a special breakfast for the family. At the airport lots from our SIM mission family were there to say farewell. We're going to miss you - our Arequipa friends.

After more than 17 hours in the air and many more hours at the airport we've arrived in Australia. We travelled well and fortunately the kids slept well on the flight. At the airport we were met by David's parents, sister-in-law and her kids. It was lovely to see Amelia and Annabelle hug their cousins after being away for almost two years.

Qantas Flight

Our main reason for returning to Australia is the wedding of Christine's sister, Rosalind and her fiancé Adrian. They will marry very soon in Brisbane. We'll be back in Arequipa in 3 months.

Here are our kids experiencing a bit of Aussie culture...

Missionaries pushing their culture

26 Feb 2013

Missionaries are taught not to push their own culture on other cultures. Especially when teaching the Bible it's important to teach the eternal truth which speaks to all cultures, including our own. So while it's generally not right to push your own culture there may be exceptions. We think that one of them is Vegemite. For those who don't know, Vegemite is a popular Australian spread to put on bread. It's made from yeast extract and has a strong taste.

Watch us introduce some of our Peruvian student friends to Vegemite.

Is the Bible like Nostradamus?

22 Feb 2013

Meeting with a new Christian and friend named Luis to study the Bible has been really interesting. We've been going through a study book called "New Life in Christ" and looking specifically at who Jesus is. This week we looked at Isaiah 53 among other passages and Luis was really struck when I said that this book was written several hundred years before Jesus was born. It's amazing that so long before Jesus was born, Isaiah speaks clearly about a coming servant who will take the punishment that we deserve. Surprised at how this passage predicted the future, Luis asked if this was like Nostradamus. I didn't have much to say about Nostradamus but we did spend the next twenty minutes looking at different passages in the Old Testament which so accurately predicted the coming Messiah, Jesus. Luis is now really motivated to read the Old Testament too.

Pray for Luis, that he will continue to be amazed by God's word.

Kids Photos

23 Dec 2012

We praise God for the girls great preschool concert and the love they have for gymnastics.

Taking their bow after the traditional dance.

The Nativity Scene. The girls were angels. Can you spot them? One is on each side of the stage. Annabelle has her hands up and Amelia is looking at Annabelle.

Having fun at preschool.

The girls all dressed for the gymnastics performance and Samuel watching from the stands. Merry Christmas everyone!

Girls practicing their splits

Girls practicing their splits

Chinup with Annabelle

Annabelle doing chin-ups

Physiotherapist visit

12 Oct 2012

Christine:

Our anniversary was today and after a celebration breakfast together, David and I thought we'd drop by a physiotherapist to get my leg treated. I have been experiencing pain when walking/standing and this has held me back from exercising beyond the normal walking required for life, errands and shopping. David pointed out a place we happened to walk past in a backstreet. I thought it looked a bit dubious from the beginning but I thought, "David is with me so it will be fine." They offered a free consultation and then treatment which was essentially a massage . It turned out the physio was a blind man (though not totally) in a wheelchair who had minimal hand movement too. How did I get a massage? He helped a bit but he had an assistant who did most of the work. After watching for a while David asked for a massage from one of his assistants too. We discovered that the blind man was their boss. We both really enjoyed our massage but tomorrow I will look for another option for treatment of my leg. I know life will always be an adventure with David. 

Blind PhysioChristine got some treatment from another physio who knew what he was doing. He also happened to be blind.

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