I recently returned from a home missions trip to help two church plants in San Antonio and Bandera, Texas. I went with a group of college and high school students. Now I don’t consider myself to be a “missionary” but I enjoy leading students in short term missions trip every year around Spring Break. It is something I never saw myself doing, but each time I head out I learn, grow, and I’m inspired by those that go.
One of the things that inspires me most is that we take a group of students who have decided rather than spend their Spring Break at the beach, at home, or some other exotic place, take the initiative to say to God, this week belongs to you. Typically they have no idea what they are getting into, but once we are arrive at our destination something happens. I see the hearts of those who made the sacrifice, and everything that they do brings me joy.
To them it doesn’t even matter what they are doing, work, cleaning, ministering, or whatever they give it their all. For anyone that has been on a mission trip before, knows that a lot of people come back fired up, they want to take on the world. But once home, the familiarity of it all sets in and we go into our regular routine again. What was easy to do away from home, because so much more difficult, but why? Form the times I’ve served on these trips, I’ve seen one attitude (that I want to address) that contributes to the fading away of the excitement, and what we can do to change it:
In (insert place name here), there was so much need, and here at home there isn’t any need!
One of the problems I experience is often don’t notice changes in people around me, and if I do it take me awhile, like a long while, the reason why we don’t notice is because we around them all the time, so we just brush it off, until someone points it out. When people travel to a new place, they seem to think that there is so much more need, and in some places there is.
But jus because there are needs to be meet and work to be done in another country to city doesn’t mean there isn’t something that needs to be done at your own church or community. The problem is that we just phased the problems and needs into obscurity.,We get used to the fact that we don’t have nursery workers, or there is no evangelism team, or that the light bulbs in the halls are out, or that the lawn needs cutting, and so much more. This happens even if you’ve never been on a mission trip, you get comfortable, and when that happens you see no need to fix anything.
So how do we break out of it? it’s fairly simple: ASK! Just ask your pastor, or leaders, and I can assure you there is something that needs to be done, maybe you didn’t even notice it, or didn’t care to remember it. But there is always some way we can serve, and even IF there isn’t anything there are needs in the community that you can do something about to show people the love of Jesus. The question is will take the time to notice and do something about it.