Saturday, July 19, 2008

Pre-Mission Trip Post

In roughly 13 hours I will be embarking on a 10 hour road trip, in a van with 14 other people and limited air conditioning, speeding towards a culture none of us has ever experienced before.
[That's my epic-sounding intro.]
So, we're about to leave to go drop my stuff off at the church so they can pack it and we can be ready to leave at *gasp* 4 a.m. tomorrow morning. oaweirgjfjgsdjrfsflsdfsljfd.
I'm feeling happy, excited, and nervous all at the same time. I absolutely love to travel and meet new people, so this is kind of my forte. God has been preparing me for this trip and, while I know that in some ways I will be prepared, I'm still anticipating yet another unexpected event that He will throw at me to make me grow into a woman after His own heart. But the jitters are on the verge of being overwhelming at the same time, too.
See, we're going to be doing missions work at a Navajo reservation in northern Arizona. The Navajo culture is very rich, very rigid, and very unlike my own culture. As I was reading over the trip description, I came across a full page of ways that the Navajo pay respect to their community, nature, and each other. I came across guidelines like, "Don't make prolonged eye contact with an elder" and "Enter each house/monument/historical structure quietly and with reverence." The more I thought about it, the more nervous I got. Naturally, I'm sort of a bubbly person- for me to stay quiet when in the community is something that's going to take a miracle. Part of that bubbly nature is also to be confident with people, which includes making eye contact when speaking to someone.
The Navajo have a wonderful culture and way of life- and I'm a little worried that I'll do/say the wrong thing to offend someone, and that's the last thing I want to do.
But, I was reminded that God called me to go on this trip for a reason, and while I don't know that reason is just yet I should have faith that He will take care of things- and even if I do mess up, something good might come from it.
I started thinking about last year's Alamosa trip and what a beautiful thing it was. I can't even describe how life-changing it was- a full year later, I'm still feeling the impact of the trip and applying the lessons I learned from it to my own life. I can't wait to experience Navajo.
Out of the blue, a question popped up in my head: Why did so many people want to go on this trip? It's going to be a lot of hard work with little rest, a lot of loving others, a lot of selflessness, and a lot of self-sacrifice. It's going to be hard. Why would people go through so much trouble just to reach people?
Then David Crowder blared the answer over my speakers: "You're everything we could ever want/You're everything we could ever need/You're the reason we're coming here/You're the reason we're gonna sing/We'll shout it out loud from the rooftops/We won't be quiet/We've fallen for Your heart and we won't stop/We won't deny it."
Why do we go to such lengths to help people? Because we've fallen head-over-heels for God, it turns into love for others, and there is NO WAY we can keep quiet about this amazing love.
Pray for me and the rest of the team, that we'll be able to spread the Gospel effectively and that our efforts will go towards the Kingdom in everything we do.
I love you all. Have a good week.

No comments: