In one week (Friday, the 21st), myself and a team of 27 others from my youth group will be arriving in Monterrey, Mexico for a 10-day missions trip! We’ll be partnering with TIME Ministries and a few local churches for 2 Vacation Bible Schools. The kids will be learning about the Fruits of the Spirit, so they will be split (by age) into different groups, each representing a different fruit (Fruit of the Spirit and edible fruit), and wearing the color to match! A few of our team will even be in fruit costumes! Hahaha! And I am very happy to say that I’ll be with the youngest group (ages 4 and under), dressed as a Blueberry of Kindness! (favorite age group and color, and actually an answer to prayer, since He loves to give us even the simple, “little” things we ask for!) But, anyways… J
Our time there will be packed full; with a work project, prayer walk, and handing out VBS flyers the first 2 days, church and some sightseeing on Sunday, then running both morning and evening VBS’s at separate locations Monday through Friday, then more tourist-y things and church on Saturday and Sunday, before heading to the airport on Monday morning. We are going to be busy!
All this to say, I am so excited!! This will be my first missions trip, and even though I’m sure there will be times of sweaty, tired, and hungry misery 😉 , there will also be times of fun, growing, and joy, as we bring God’s Love and Salvation to these kids and their families! I am just so excited to see how God is able to move and breathe in each of us, so that we can show Who He Is, even if it’s just through our actions. Especially if it’s just through our actions. And because no hablo mucho espanol.
“Preach the Gospel at all times; when necessary, use words.” – Francis of Assisi
And, I’ve been thinking, especially the past few days, about what the purpose is of this trip (and of life in general) is. What His Purpose is. We are the workers going out to harvest (Luke 10:2). The purpose is learning, growing, and salvation. To make Him known. It is relationship with the God of the universe.
Yesterday, as I filled the first few pages of the mission journal I was given, a quote on one of the pages caught my attention. It reads: “Short-term mission, as with any kind of Christian mission, is best defined and evaluated by how closely we align ourselves with God Himself as He pursues the fulfillment of His Mission.” – Roger Peterson
The purpose is to align ourselves with God, and He’ll most certainly fulfill His Mission in and through us. But we have a choice. We can choose to be humble, angry, kind, loving, miserable, bold, or joyful. Our circumstances don’t have to define us. We can make decisions and take action. We have the choice and opportunity to either shine His Light and draw others closer to Him, or push them away. And as His children, we need to be different from everyone else, because we have God, and He makes all the difference. He produces those Fruits of the Spirit in us. We will fail of course, but there is always forgiveness. And more chances. Each moment is a possibility, and we have to make the best of it, and keep going.
We all have to decide, whether it’s for a trip coming up in a week or for a lifetime, what our purpose is. And what God’s purpose for us is. If they don’t line up, then maybe we need to change something, ask for a new vision, and discover just why we were put on this earth.
God’s purpose is love. God is Love.
“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.” – 1 Corinthians 13:4-8a