Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Changed Life

Mission trips change lives. I went on a mission’s trip when I was 17 to Jamaica for six weeks. It was the first time I had been out of the United States. My eyes popped open with understanding of what a privileged life I had led. It changed my life.

In August, the heat blistered the team to sweat and tears—literally. The bugs ruled the bunkhouse. The food didn’t appeal to our tastes. It was a whole new experience for all eight of us teenage girls.

I stepped off my first flight, ate my first strange meal, and slept on a hard floor with strange creepy crawly creatures. The first day made six weeks seem like an eternity. I wanted to go home. By the Lord’s grace, I somehow stuck it out. (Besides, my parents said I couldn’t come home.)

Here’s an excerpt from my journal from all those years ago.

The time has gone by so fast. I know that when I get home it will feel like a dream. It has already seemed like that—the days past don’t seem to be real. Well, praise the Lord I stayed although at first I just about died. Now I don’t want to leave, maybe if it’s the Lord’s will I’ll be able to come back. I hope. Believe it or not I feel the Lord is directing me into evangelistic work. But I’ll have to see.

My life changed on that trip. It enabled me to move past my self-centered adolescence. The trip changed my view of the world. It was one of the best things that I have ever experienced.

Never been on a mission’s trip? Go—you’ll never be the same.

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