Spotlight on Missions, Part 2
Today I want to talk about Short-Term Mission Trips.
Many churches take short-term mission trips – to a variety of places for a variety of reasons, serving a variety of people.
I have a friend who spent a whole summer in Uganda serving orphans. My dad recently spent a week in Guatemala helping construct churches and homes. My brother-in-law oversees all the mission trips at their church, sending people all over the globe in service to the Savior. Friends at our church went to India, Nepal, and Mali last year, helping provide for the needs of the poor in those countries. Another group stayed here in the states, going to a multicultural center in New York City to help teach English. Good friends went to a remote village in Costa Rica, serving the church there in a variety of ways. Full-time missionaries we know live in Nicaragua and facilitate short-term teams that come through that country, overseeing several important projects that help the people there. Below is a picture of my daughters with our friend, Nate, leading a VBS lesson at a school in Costa Rica on a trip we took in 2008.
Serving others is a key component of short-term trips. But that is not all — Jesus called us to meet the physical needs of those around us. That is a clear mandate. But he didn’t want us to stop there. Our human bodies won’t last forever. Our souls, however, are eternal. Those who take short-term trips care for the physical needs of people, but they also help meet spiritual needs. Giving someone a hot meal, fresh water, or a home is vital. But giving them the truth that Jesus loves every part of them, loved them so much that He came to this sin-torn world to be our Savior, that is eternal. Short-term trips allow you to meet physical and spiritual needs, getting you out of your comfort zone to do it.
If you have never gone on a short-term trip, GO! If you’re not ready to go quite yet, find someone who is and pray for them as they prepare and go. Help them raise the money they need to go. Find out what they need to bring — clothes for children, building materials, canned goods — and send them along. They are so many ways to be involved in short-term missions. It is rewarding, exciting, and everyone who has been can tell you – you’ll get far more out of it than you give. you go to be a blessing, but you find that you were, in fact, the one most blessed.