What is it about missions trips that make them so special?
How do they so quickly burn a mark on our hearts?
This is what I’ve been chewing on for the past two weeks. How long post LA has it been… roughly a month or so I think
Honestly? I am reminded of LA almost everyday still.
The beginning of this week it was my dirty feet on the dashboard of my car, then boom. There I was back in LA with my dirty, sandy feet on the dashboard again. GPS in hand, navigating through large expanses of city with happy chatting and Jack Johnson in the background. I knew it too, then….that I was burning those moments in my mind.
Down in LA I connected with God in a tangible way, very very real. You use your hands, feet, heart, ears, voice… every part of yourself to learn what God is teaching you because you are doing. You aren’t sitting in a desk, or in a pew learning about God…. you are learning about Him through moving and doing. Not to say that sitting and listening aren’t good because they are, but when backed up with a trip where you put it all into motion? It burns on your heart.
Sure you hear about the hurting and aching out there, where people need help with the food and shelter parts of living but you never really know until you are standing in the soup kitchen line feeding people. You never really know until you are packing cans and boxes of food into bags to hand to people. Real people, whose hands you touch. You never really know until you look onto the faces of little ones who are grateful for the meal you helped in actually cooking. Lessons learned on the mission field are remembered because that is how God designed us to be.
In John chapter 21 Jesus asks Simon Peter if he truly loves Him, three times He asks Simon this. Each time Simon answers “you know I love you.”
Jesus replies “Feed my sheep.”
You see when you look back on the life of Jesus when He walked the earth where was He? What was He usually doing most of the time? He was moving and doing. To follow Jesus back then was to walk with Him as He moved along the country side in and among people. To follow Jesus now is pretty much the same thing… walk with Him in and among people.
Missions trips burn onto our hearts because it’s pretty hard to put aside the feeling of being so alive and whole and complete as you give of yourself to others. To give glory to God by serving others is what we are created to do. It is important to Jesus.
Do the studying, do the listening, journaling and discussing of course but….
If you ever get the chance to go, take it. It will burn memories you will thank The Lord you have.
My goodness I sure am.