You know, we encounter people all the time whose eyes light up just as ours when we talk about mission work on foreign soil.
Those same eyes usually light up when we do mission work and disaster relief work–here.
But…occasionally you will come across one who wants an explanation for “why”, and would rather offer the excuse that they see too many needs here to go across the “pond” to serve.
Funny thing that. I rarely see them jumping on a plane to go serve. Vacation, sure. A week for pleasure–, as Grandbuddy would say, “you betcha”. But to spend a week out of their comfort zone–where diseases are unknown and the common, ordinary mosquito carries more than a “bite”….well, that’s a horse of a different color.
I used to have the mindset that I was one that should “send”. Meaning, give to help another fulfill their calling. But then the day came when I surrendered to the call on my life–and I knew I was one picked to “go”.
No matter where–or how far.
I was amazed and proud of the medical professionals that stepped away from the comforts and safety of home to give a week. They didn’t have to–there are plenty of things they could have done with a week off. Yet they chose to “give”.
I was especially excited to know they would get the opportunity to give the beans and rice–and see where the people lived. I would have loved to be able to invisibly tag along to record their comments and expressions–especially for those who had never been. A mission like this makes an impact like nothing else in life.
The fact that Raymond Smith’s youth group chose this journey over “camp” was another intriguing moment for me on this trip. I loved listening to the youth talk about what they had seen–and watching their faces–as they took in the tiny faces looking back at them.
Even though they aren’t “mine”, I was equally proud of those who wanted to go into the operating room and observe–as well as help out in recovery–or help clean, sort and store the medical supplies.
My help to the hospital end, began and ended at the washing, drying and folding laundry. As Carol and Sheila, from Bonifay First–diligently worked in the laundry room every evening, Rene and I took a turn in their every day when we weren’t with the kids–or delivering rice or beans–or collapsed on the bed for a 10 minute power rest from a long trek in the rain. Actually, I’ve never seen two women work as hard at laundry as Carol and Sheila. The hospital laundry never ceased. Two washers and two dryers never stopped running.
When asked the question of the week spent away working–when so much could be done in the U.S., I liked the answer of Bro. Bill Wester: “You have 51 other weeks to serve here”. Use those. Serve with all you have. I have a few comments about those who use that excuse, but I will keep them to myself.
|My favorite picture from this trip.|
Give a week.
It’s not a vacation–and should not be considered by you-nor anyone else as such. It’s hard work, usually doing things you are unaccustomed to doing. BUT it is so rewarding!
We had a few discomfiting situations–the bus driver strike following a shooting, or stabbing from gang violence the night before was probably the biggest issue–no, strike that. The biggest issue was the night before we left for home–and I got violently ill. To the point of not being able to leave the bathroom. I was one of several who got sick from something we ate.
Can I be transparent and tell you that the Devil reminded me of both of those incidents when my invitation to be a part of this trip landed in my lap? Fiercely. But I had vowed to follow Christ–into the unknown, or the known. I was not the one doing the “choosing”. God was. He is the One who called me out of my comfortable job–the security of knowing what I was going to do every day–5 days a week. Plus benefits.
But when I said, ‘Yes’, to His beckoning voice, I found myself in the most secure Hands. Much more than Allstate.
Each trip, God grants me the joy of looking into eyes I’ve never seen before and He gives me a gift there.
In Cambodia–it was a “wake up call”. A clock showed up in a pair of liquid brown eyes from out of nowhere–showing me that “time was running out”. Jeff saw it before I did.
These eyes show mercy.
I hope you see it as I did. It amazed me once again how God works.
There are still many stories to tell, but some I am saving until after I teach on Wednesday night–because they are for my class. Some, will most likely get told in bits and pieces along the journey–some from each mission I’ve been privileged to take, are yet to be told.
Oh friend….God is so faithful. He GAVE His only Son so that you and I might have life…if we so choose life over death. Choose Him today if you don’t already have a relationship with Christ.
And hopefully, soon, He will ask you to “give a week”.
Join me again tomorrow–where I will show you more pictures…and you can tell me what YOU see….
© Angie Knight- The Knightly News