I got to travel to Fort Wayne, Indiana again for a mission trip!
This year 2 new guys came along with us. There were a total of 18 people (adults + kiddos).
We packed everything into our new little trailer Saturday, June 23rd. Came to church Sunday morning and then after my Pastor got finished preaching, we went to eat the meal some of our sweet church family made us. Once we ate, we piled up in the church van and headed north.
My youth pastor, LD (Larry David), appointed us to be more accountable on this trip. Which meant that we each had an important role to play. Some of us got bathroom duty, and sous chef, and then some of the veterans in the group were responsible for giving away Bibles and motivating the rest of the group to hand them out (that was me!). That plan turned out really good. Everyone knew what their job was, and whoever was finished with theirs helped the person that wasn’t done.
We stopped right before Cincinnati for a bathroom break. I handed everyone 3 Bibles to give out. Fortunately, there was this huge bus that started unloading, so the group started giving them out with ease. Usually, we have to almost hunt for people to give Bibles or wait until a Walmart trip.
We ended up at the first church we stayed at three years ago! The girls got to share the big youth room and the guys slept in the gymnasium.
Every night we would play games and settle down for a devotional led by an adult. The group all had to come up with a devotional for breakfast and lunch. You can find part of my devotional here.
I loved this part probably the most. We all go to see the truest side of ourselves and each other. The sincerity and humbleness were motivating.
The girls and I would be doing VBS at Living Waters Community Church, which was actually in Garret, Indiana. The family that leads the congregation is led by the sweetest people you will ever meet. They were with us most of the week, helping and working alongside us. The little kids that would come to VBS made the trip for me. There were some that made your heart squeeze because of their circumstances. All of our hearts broke for the kids that came with soiled clothes and wet shoes, hungry bellies and tired eyes. I’m not the type that would dance in front of people willingly, but the girls were asked to learn the VBS dance moves and I reluctantly joined them. Each day we would dance there would be a kid (or many kids) come to dance up with us. By the time Thursday arrived no one could see me because most all the kids were dancing in front of me.
We take things for granted so much.
Seeing those kids come to VBS without knowing who Jesus is, broke my heart. The way they appreciated every little thing was humbling. I love and miss those kids even now. There was one that took to one of our girls really well. He attached himself with her most of the week. He would tell her he loved her and dance right beside her. One of the crafts we did was a paper bag robot, and he made it look like her. A side braid and all.
While we were doing VBS, the guys did lots of reconstruction and yard maintenance for the church and some of the ladies of the congregation at Living Waters, who wasn’t able to do it themselves.
We would all meet up at lunch and eat together. Have some downtime to rest up and go to a different place each night for a youth worship and fellowship. We all had a lot of fun! Even though we were completely out of our comfort zones, we got to meet people who were equally nervous about meeting new people as well. One of the nights, there was a game show and I won a yellow Lamborghini (just a poster of the car)! One of the guys working with us dressed up in a 70’s getup and co-hosted the game show with his brother. One of the challenges was trying to guess the correct price for an item. When they told me I had guessed correctly I was shocked. I think everyone else in the room was shocked as well. I literally know nothing about cars, which made the whole ordeal hilarious. For me, at least. So when I left Indiana, I packed up my yellow Lamborghini poster with me.
I loved meeting new people and growing closer to the ones who we met before. Mission trips aren’t always about reaching new people to share the gospel. it can also be a good time to grow in your walk with Christ, as well as find other people walking the same pace you are.
“For by the grace given to me, I tell everyone among you not to think of himself more highly than he should think. Instead, think sensibly, as God has distributed a measure of faith to each one. Now as we have many parts in one body, and all the parts do not have the same function, in the same way, we who are many are one body in Christ and individually members of one another. According to the grace given to us, we have different gifts: If prophecy, use it according to the standard of one’s faith; if service, in service; if teaching, in teaching; if exhorting, in exhortation; giving, with generosity; leading, with diligence; showing mercy, with cheerfulness. Love must be without hypocrisy. Detest evil; cling to what is good. Show family affection to one another with brotherly love. Outdo one another in showing honor. Do not lack diligence; be fervent in spirit; serve the Lord. Rejoice in hope; be patient in affliction; be persistent in prayer. Share with the saints in their needs; pursue hospitality. Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. Rejoice with those who rejoice; weep with those who weep. Be in agreement with one another. Do not be proud; instead, associate with the humble. Do not be wise in your own estimation. Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Try to do what is honorable in everyone’s eyes. If possible, on your part, live at peace with everyone.”
(Romans 12:3-18 )
Enjoy these snapshots from the trip!
(Romans 12:3-18 )