Prepare to be blessed as you read these stories from students just returning from a life changing mission with Group Mission Trips.
My Mission Trip Enlightenment – Before coming on this trip, I really did not want to go at all! I thought, “Man this is gonna suck, I’m not gonna meet anyone new, and I’m gonna be super bored.” My mom said I should at least go once to give it a try, so I was forced to come regardless.
As the days went on, I was actually having a lot of fun with all the people I met and grew closer with. But on Wednesday of the trip when we were asked to come up to the cross to ask for forgiveness, this is when I truly lost it. This is because it was the first time in my life I had felt forgiven and the first time I had truly found God. It was such an amazing experience and one huge reason why I will be going on mission trips whenever I can!
Small Act of Kindness Makes A Big Difference – I’m Ben, and I went on the Pocahontas Workcamp trip this year. My God-sighting occurred throughout the entire week, but grew bigger on the last day. Each day that week, after our lunch and devotions, we would give our leftover food to some kids across the street who were playing outside. We would walk over to them with our bag full of bread, meat, and some other toppings and condiments, and they would gladly take the bag. Then they ran inside and looked through the bag to see what they got. After that, we walked back to our work site and finished that day’s work.
This became more of a God-sighting on Friday. While a few of us were at the dump to drop off rotten wood, our resident was talking with the rest of my crew and her neighbors. According to my crew leader, the parents of the kids that we were giving the food to were drug addicts and were also planning on getting a divorce. Because of that, it was hard for the parents to provide for their family. When we were giving the food to those kids we were just being nice and generous, but it turns out that we were helping them out more than we thought. Some days, the food we gave them might have been the only food they’ve gotten all day, for all we know.
That week, God showed us that the little acts of kindness that we do sometimes helps others more than we expect. I learned through guidance from my crew leader that I need to be all in when it comes to my faith and that God loves me for just being me.
God in every thing, in every day – Before going to Peru this July, I did not know what I would experience. I had never been on a mission trip before so I was very nervous. I could not imagine the way I saw God move. Doing God sightings everyday helped me discover God moving every day. I started opening my eyes and searching for God instead of waiting for him to come to me. I even started my own God sightings journal that I write in every day.
It was also very encouraging that the people I was serving in this small village a little ways back from the banks of the Ucayali river knew about Jesus. I didn’t have to introduce him to them because God had already penetrated this part of the world. I saw how God has moved and continues to move in very remote places.
Also, before the trip my dad and I were in a very rocky place in our relationship. I also was beginning to question where he was with God and if he even knew him much at all. As the trip went on I saw a huge change in my dad. I saw his heart for serving and he started to read his Bible and pray a lot more. He has continued to do so and I can’t wait to see what God does in the future with him and our relationship.
Restored on The Road – It’s been incredible to serve God and His people in California for the past week! I could never have imagined completing the various tasks we’ve tackled, i.e. completely transforming an overgrown plot and cultivating it into a blessing for its community. Although it was exhausting and the humidity was off the charts, there were moments where God showered His love on us, in different aspects; a visit from a man in the neighborhood, a cool breeze to revive us, the air conditioning when we returned to the home building.
We were also blessed with a day to connect with the homeless and impoverished, helping sort their food and clothes for easy access. All of us were able to hear their stories and form a better understanding of those in need, which undoubtedly furthered our love for those who have less than us; I feel a greater appreciation for the Lord’s blessings in my life.
This was my first mission trip, and to all of you who are considering trying this experience, say YES. Run to that sign-up and get on the road. It will change your heart and your perspective, and renew your trust in God’s ability to restore us.
Jesus is changing lives every day through young people like these students and and He can do that with people like you, too. Learn how you can join them!
At Group Mission Trips, our passion is creating service experiences to help people grow in their relationships with Jesus and each other. It’s more than a moment, it’s a mindset. We are continually humbled by God’s transforming work through this organization, especially now as 2017 marks the 40th birthday of our beginnings. After forty years, one constant remains true; we strongly believe in providing opportunities for teenagers to grow closer to Jesus through serving others, either in their own backyard or halfway across the globe. The Group Mission Trip’s legacy of lasting impact continues.
After 40 years, Group Mission Trips has had more than 450,000 participants who have logged in more than 13 million volunteer hours. Learn more how you can volunteer or help support Group Mission Trips global ministry.
On MissionFinder, we have over 1,000 ministries offering opportunities like this to serve at home and around the world. Does your church or organization need help organizing mission trips? Check out our partner site, MissionMinder.com. Their easy to use software will help you manage all the details for your short-term mission trips and team members online. Unlimited Trips. Unlimited team members. Easy online fundraising for your team members. Try it free for 30 days. Learn more here.