Next month I’m heading to Honduras for a medical mission trip! I’ll be blogging about my thoughts on missions and including pictures from my previous trips! (above is part of the team in Haiti).
I’ve been on mission ventures to Haiti 2010, India 2011, Alaska 2012 & 2013, Nicaragua 2017 and Mexico 2017. Haiti was the only other medical mission trip I’ve been on, and I went with Samaritan’s Purse to take care of cholera patients. India, Alaska, and Mexico were evangelistic and construction type mission trips, and Nicaragua was a visit to friends who are full-time missionaries.
(my bunk in Haiti)
The United States spent 3.2$ trillion on healthcare in 2015[i]. In Haiti, we washed our hands with a bar of soap nailed to the door frame of the make-shift hospital. The water we rinsed with contained bleach, which served as the disinfectant. In operating rooms in the US, we have copious special hand cleansers and sanitizers. In Haiti, we had bleach.
(church in India)
Traveling to a third world country has a way of deconstructing the excess that exists in our lives. While I always find myself grateful for my flush toilet, I usually come home amazed at all the “stuff” I seem to need to exist. Seeing people be happy with next to nothing taught me that my stuff doesn’t have real, lasting value.
(aboard the prop plane to bush Alaska)
Patients in Honduras can wait years, even over a decade, for surgical procedures such as appendectomies and gallbladder removals, which are routine in the USA. Patients travel hours to get to the clinic for their surgeries.
Participating in mission trips is a great way to give of yourself and your talents to help others. Hebrews 6:10 (NIV) says, God is not unjust; he will not forget your work and the love you have shown him as you have helped his people and continue to help them. We all have skills to share, and loving others is part of loving God. We all have our roles to play in the world.
(concrete preparation in Alaska)
We’re not called to keep those gifts and talents to ourselves. Galatians 5:13 reads, You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh; rather, serve one another humbly in love.
Serve one another.
For me, mission trips are important, not because I am someone who gives freely of myself, but because the opposite is true. These trips remind me I have to work to focus on being a servant because it isn’t in my nature. Seeing a blatant need in the world reveals the blessings in my own life and calls me to be better.
(working with the deaf in Nicaragua)
Extending a helping hand and using our gifts and resources to serve those less fortunate are both parts of being our best selves. #courageup
Heading to Honduras, K.
(building a pastor’s house in Mexico)