What a great Mission Trip we took! We worked some, played some, learned some and met a lot of great (interesting!) people (raise your hand!). We had a VERY busy day in NYC and saw things I've wanted to see for ever! We have some very giving folks in our congregation, and lot of them are youth! :-) I just think that's cool.
So at the end of every mission trip I've ever taken, I sit back and wonder what we got out of it. We put a lot into it, from the planning and fundraising, to the trip out and back, and of course, the work. But I've never returned from any trip unchanged. How have we been changed this time?
I think we're much more aware now. I hope we can share our awareness with our friends and families, and our church family too. And I hope that through us, others can become more aware and be changed as well.
Through our work in the gardens, we are more aware of the food we eat - where it comes from and what goes into growing it. Through our learning, we are more aware of the backs on which our food comes - how many hands touch it, how those hands are treated, and the price that is paid for our convenience. Through our study and conversation, we are more aware of our responsibility to help God bring the kingdom of heaven to earth - to help care for the creation and the creature and the many ways we have fallen short. And yet, we're not done yet, and neither is God!
Our theme this year was "On Earth As It Is In Heaven." How are we helpers with God in making the earth like heaven? Our job is to care for God's Earth - from using organic and recyclable products, to caring for those whose voices cannot be heard, reducing our carbon footprint and reusing before throwing away, raising awareness and teaching others.
We still have a lot to do! We may be back home now, but the mission has just begun! Send it!!!