A couple of notable things have happened in the past week.
1. We finished up an eighth grade confirmation retreat yesterday. It was a little bit of a struggle because the teens were really uninterested at first. I am not sure if they really knew what they were there for. This isn’t anybody’s fault. It is more of a problem of society that they are eighth graders and are just now being invited into the family of Christ. The previous confirmation groups were ready and open from the very start. But this one, I felt that I was immediately in a battle with the voices of Earth.
Well anyways, our retreat centered on being set free from chains. It was a retreat from scratch, which is amazing because the previous message: mission impossible would not have done anything. When we were praying about this retreat we just had it in our hearts to go in a completely different direction. I think it was completely move by God because these kids needed to focus on the chains that are keeping them here on earth. It was startling to realize that these kids had NEVER even really considered the fact that what society says is false. It was a completely new idea to them.
Sorry, this is a little boring. It was great though, because we were able to really break downs some barriers and had them so engaged by the end. Even the kids who still thought that God wasn’t there for them . . . we will leave it at that.
2. Something happened today that I feel really pulling on my heart. It was a new outlook on an old idea. I have always felt the desire to go into missions. It is a field that I love and am completely EXCITED about! I can get incredibly passionate about just going out and serving those in need. I especially have a desire to go out to foreign missions. I love the culture clash, the communication struggles, the poverty shock, and the idea that this is what Jesus has called all of our hearts to do. To serve those who need. I also love the blessings that I receive when I serve. We had a meeting today about our mission trip to Mexico in December. One of the hosts Kevin said it perfectly: I sometimes go down expecting to be of so much help, but usually leave so humbled and blessed because of their holiness and ministry to my heart.
Anyways, that wasn’t the good part. That was actually something that I too have felt after every single missionary trip I have taken. SO, the part that pretty screamed out to me was when they began talking about the dangers that encompass a trip. They were describing some of the diseases and the unsafe food and the construction dangers. I have always recognized that there is some danger in mission work. I am fine with it and it doesn’t really phase me. However, every group that I have gone with has been extremely careful and have been so overprotective. They are so worried about their numbers and want to keep people coming back.
Now, this group is also concerned about their missionaries and do take precautionary measures. BUT, they also recognize that God is the only one who ultimately protects and that there are dangers everywhere in the world. AND, the point that pretty much stopped me in my tracks was the fact that as a missionary, I have to be ready to lay my LIFE down for these people. Things are going to happen. I could be offered unsafe food, and instead of insulting them I eat it and just get sick. They don’t have the most up to date tools and something could very well happen on a worksite and I could get seriously hurt. I could get attacked while in the country!!! I could possibly DIE!! Some of this stuff is unlikely,but I have never really asked myself if I am willing to die anyways. Usually I will always dismiss the danger and say that it is so unlikely. But it is likely!!! How many missionaries have had their life ended in another country!? TRUE missionaries. Not the ones who just go for a week and part of it is vacation. It just made me think. Something that I have never really paid attention to. Am I willing to die for my faith. Am I willing to put my life on the line for people I don’t know? I dunno sometimes. Sometimes I think I could, other times I chalk it up to me wanting to be a hero.