We plan, we fundraise, we give up time, we sweat & sleep on cots. Why all the fuss? What’s the point? Well, here are a few reasons.
1. Mission Trips bring people together
If you’ve ever been on a weekend retreat or road trip, you know how that experience can build community. You ride together, play together, eat together, stay up late together, get up tired together. “Together” is a powerful word. Think of “together” as glue – the more broadly it’s spread, the better a group will bond. Mission trips apply “together” to peoples’ sense of adventure, their desire to make a difference, their relationship with God, their daily experiences, their broken comfort zones and much more. Working together helps it stick.
2. Broaden your perspective
You might be more connected than ever with what’s happening around the world, but have you seen what it’s like to live below the poverty line in small-town America? Or experienced the energy and exhaustion of raising a roof? Felt the isolation of rural living and the strong ties of those neighbors who will help each other survive? Pulling you from your typical context helps you understand that the world is larger than your daily lives would have you believe. By beginning to understand another setting, your own context comes into truer focus.
3. Challenge your Comfort Zones
Beyond broadening perspectives, mission trips demand participation. Painting a house, sawing wood, pounding nails, serving a meal, sleeping on an air mattress, experiencing a new culture – these are a few examples of ways comfort zones are crossed. But when coupled with intentional processing and worship, mission trips have the unique ability to challenge comfortable perceptions of God and the world. Faith steps beyond the doors of the church and demands to be applied to real-world living.
4. Mission Trips Empower People
God is doing incredible work in the world and you are called to be a part of it. The energy, authenticity, fresh perspective and passion required in this time are a vibrant part of that experience. Mission trips help people take ownership and initiative; both for those doing the mission and those receiving the gift of it. Eyes are opened. Passions are ignited. Possibilities are exposed. Mission trips help you see what you are capable of. You can choose to believe in the incredible opportunity & possibility of using your gifts to do the work of Jesus. Not just “someday,” but now, and every time after now.
5. Create Sacred Space
The Israelites used to build monuments by throwing together big piles of rock to point at later and say, “That signifies God’s faithfulness in our lives.” For many people, mission trips represent a time and a place when God worked in and through their lives. More than a mere mountain-top high, these sacred spaces both anchor you in your faith and can propel you forward in your relationship with God. Serving is a sacred act. The sweat and hard work and accomplishment are all sacred acts of service. The joy and thankfulness of playing in the cool water after work, are an act of thanksgiving and worship. Even in times of trouble, people often point toward their mission trip experience and say, “That signifies God’s faithfulness in my life.”
Do you need this experience in your life? Can you give back this way? You are welcome to join us.
Melanie Holcomb, Interim Director of Christian Education
Mission Trip to Webster Springs, WV
Sunday, June 18th—Saturday, June 24
Cost BEFORE Fundraising: $360 per person
Rafting is an option on our free day. There is an extra cost for this.
Working with Presbyterian Disaster Assistance and the WV Ministry of Advocacy & Work Camps to repair housing and facilities damaged by last summer’s devastating floods.
Ages 14 (ish) to 84 (ish) are welcome to participate in the adventure.