When Jordan was three months old, our friends Yip and Frieda invited us to spend the weekend with them. They were on a farm about forty-five minutes from Dehra Dun in a small town called Selaqui. It was right near a chicken farm. The flies were unbelievable. It got really tiring trying to get rid them, so we stopped flapping and let them sit all over us; hundreds of them.
Yip and Frieda’s story was amazing. They had been in India since the early 80’s and had picked up fifty children whose parents had contracted leprosy. After a couple of years of moving around and staying in all kinds of place with all those children, they found a huge “haunted” property, which no one wanted. It was a Godsend. They had four of their own children, Kirti, Asher, Shuva and Neebha. They got on really well with Asha and Zoë. Our favourite game to play with them was, “Last Touch.” Someone would start it as we were getting into the car to go home. None of us would give up. There was a lot of wildness and chasing after adults and children to get that last touch. We loved visiting them.
They introduced us to their friends Sanjiv and Sushila who were working with them on the farm and in the hostel. We loved their down-to-earth Christianity and learnt a lot from them. They had three children, Shruti, Ashish and David. David was Asha’s age and had Downs Syndrome. He was such a cutie and for some reason, he loved Tony. He actually loved all of us. He would go to the toilet, sit on the pot and then call each of us for help. “Aaasha! Own-y! Ninda! Ozzyyyyy!!!!” One after the other we would laugh and shout, “No David, I’m not coming.” His amazing parents were always there ready to help him.
David had a love/hate relationship with one of the roosters on the farm. When it was running wild, it would chase him and peck his legs. He wasn’t very agile but he would run away from it as fast as he could. To get his revenge, David would wait for it to be locked up in its cage and then wee all over it.
Tony had been invited to lead a worship time with the community on the farm. We spent time with the kids during the day and had meetings with the staff in the evening. On the last night, there were about ten of us in a small room. We all went for it. There was no holding back and our hearts were open and vulnerable to God. We sang at the top of our voices, not caring what anyone thought of us.
I had never experienced the presence of God like that in all my life. From my head to my toes, I was tingling. I started to feel the muscles in my face giving in. I suddenly had the thought that the Holy Spirit was overwhelming me. I was getting drunk. My legs got wobbly and I was struggling to stand. When I tried to talk, my words came out all slurry. Before I knew it I was stumbling over people but refusing to go down. I held onto curtains and ladies’ saris to try to stay up. I kept telling everyone that I was a good girl and had never been drunk before. Tony had never seen me so “out of control.” He found it so funny. So did I. So did everyone.
The next day I was still flying high. I couldn’t believe what had happened to me. There was so much lightness in my heart. We drove back to Mussoorie laughing and talking about our incredible weekend. Tiffany was waiting for us on our veranda. As I hugged her she said, “Lin, your dad has had a massive heart attack. He’s in a critical condition.”