Friday, August 1

14 Reasons to go on A Mission Trip.

At this time last week, I was on the tail-end of a mission trip with my youth group. Prior to leaving for our trip, I spent a lot of time making sure everything was ready to go, I even had blog posts planned out for while I was gone...I love my own crazy ambition sometimes, big plans people!

The truth is that best laid plans do not always work out. I know this, but as a planning kind of gal, it stresses me out a little bit when plans don't happen the way I plan them - silly right?! In the case of my pre-trip planning this time, I stressed myself out just enough to get a canker sore (Read: GROSS and painful).

All of this to say, what a week. I took my students (along with 2 other awesome adult leaders) to serve the city of Indianapolis, Indiana through Group Mission Trips Week of Hope. Cell phones/iEverything was turned in early Sunday morning, we loaded up a mini-van's worth of luggage and a 15-passenger van's worth of students and headed on our way. Brother #3 and his friend packed up the night before and my mom drove them (and brothers #4 & #5) out from Maryland to meet up with our group in Indianapolis to join our group for the week.

To compress and recap our whole week here is really a tough task. We arrived in Indianapolis on Sunday afternoon, spent Monday-Thursday serving at 13 different project sites with 5 other churches,  putting in over 2000 hours of service combined. We had fun exploring Indianapolis Tuesday night and Friday morning, I saw some of my family, and then we spent a night and day exploring Chicago on the way home. That is just a lot of stories and experiences to share.

Even to verbalize our mission trip experience, I (of all people) generally fall short on words. What I will say is God does pretty cool things in unexpected ways, and one of the best parts of being on a mission trip is really taking the time to acknowledge all of the ways He is working in our lives and the lives of others...constantly! 

Reflecting on my week, I am especially thankful to have a husband who is in ministry. There are few other people that would truly understand how important it was for me to be gone for a week leading a mission trip, what that experience is like from the leadership side, and  who know me well enough to support me through it all! Adam is that person. He even managed to fend for himself in the meal department while I was gone, which may or may not have included him grilling steak for lunch one day... :) 

The theme for all of Group Mission Trip sites this year was "Repair: Be a Story of Transformation". We spent time as a youth group digging into different stories in the Bible where repair or transformation occurred, and more personally what repair and transformation was going on in our own lives.

My 14 reasons for going on a mission trip are pretty awesome: these 14 students. 14 students who I was blessed to lead as we all experienced a transformation during our trip. For each student the transformation was different, but I couldn't be more proud of the way each of them whole-heartedly served Jesus this summer. What better 14 reasons to go on a mission trip?