“That’s Not For Me”

There are several different reactions when a new Mission Trip is announced from the stage on a Sunday or sent out as an upcoming event in the weekly email. For context, a Mission Trip refers to a short-term trip, outside your immediate area, to support an organization already working in the respective country or region.

For some, it could be easy to hear and think, “that doesn’t really apply to me.” If I am being honest, this is exactly how I felt in the fall of 2012 when Hoboken Grace announced a desire to complete twelve Mission Trips in 2013. I was relatively new in my faith and I still had a lot of questions. I figured there was no way that I could possibly go and share the message of Jesus given I hadn’t figured out my own understanding yet. 

Others, may hear the announcement and get really excited about the trip. Then, they see the dates, and the trip cost and look at their vacation time. All of a sudden, the trip doesn’t seem so exciting anymore. This was my story for sure. At the time, I worked in finance and had just three weeks of vacation. Couple that with the fact that I wasn’t really talking to others about my faith, let alone considering asking them to donate to my trip. It sure felt like an impasse; like there were too many hurdles in my way. 

The last group doesn’t even take the time to engage the thought. It is another announcement, just like the one last week and probably like the one coming next week. I have seen people’s eyes glaze over at this point of the service. 

The challenge in these reactions is thinking about and prioritizing ourselves. If “I” don’t have all the answers, “I” shouldn’t go. Should “I” really give up my vacation time and financial resources to go? Certainly, other people are in different situations that would make it easier for them to go.

I want to challenge those thoughts for a minute. If you fall into the following categories, I think you should go on a Mission Trip: 

  • You want to grow in your personal walk with God.
  • You are curious to expand your view of the world outside the comforts of your home.
  • You desire to be a team player and want to meet other people just like you. 
  • You want to cultivate a servant’s heart and grow in your compassion.
  • You want to learn from Godly examples.
  • You are willing to prayerfully consider where God may want you to go and follow where He leads you.

My guess is that many of you fall into at least one of these categories. Wouldn’t it be cool to explore what God may have in store for you on one of these trips? 

I ultimately decided to go, thanks to the encouragement from other believers. It drastically changed my life and I went back to Guatemala for five straight years. I still sponsor a child, Ashley, who is set to graduate high school next year! I received much more than the houses that we built on those trips. 

Jesus gave up all the comforts of heaven and the privileges He had been granted to come to earth for us!  

I also had the pleasure of talking with a few other people who participated in some of our Service Trips, and here is a little bit of what they had to say:

Rob – “I knew no one going on my first Mission Trip, but I felt called. I answered. God showed me things I never imagined He would. I don’t keep going because of what I can do to help, though that part is awesome. I keep going because of what God does for me each time. He has made my life so much richer from the experiences.”

Erin – “I originally went on a Mission Trip because I thought I would be helping or serving people who really needed it. What I found was that God used the trip to show me more about Himself, and show me places in my own life where I was poor and in need of help.”

Shelby – “Mission Trips are essential to growing your faith in ways that can’t happen when you are in the comfort of your own home. Leaving the comforts and privileges of our lives here and serving a different way of life opens your heart to see God’s love in an entirely different way.”

Mission Trips are a special way to see Christ’s love through service and perspective. Being able to humble yourself and serve others helps us connect with our Creator that humbled Himself to serve us. By serving our partners abroad we can extend our reach and impact lives that we wouldn’t be able to touch if it wasn’t for our partners.

The Mission Team would love to talk with you and answer any questions. Simply email us at missions@hobokengrace.com. We will be praying for you!

To learn more about our upcoming trips, click here!

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