We have 13 souls heading to Honduras tomorrow with Trash Mountain Project to build some houses and deepen a partnership with a trash dump community. Two of those souls are my wife and my son. It’s going to be a great trip. I thought I’d post some of the thoughts I’ve communicated with the team to help them get ready for the trip.
What a journey that lies in front of you! It’s going to change your life – you guys have heard that about a million times now, I’m sure but let me get a little more specific as to how that is going to happen and how you will know it is happening.
You are going to feel overwhelmed. Stressed. Out of control. Helpless. Tension. Worry.
And that’s okay.
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been on a mission trip or traveled overseas. Lots. Seen a lot of weird things, God-things. And still, my last trip, this one to the Philippines – I still experienced this things and saw things I couldn’t explain.
How is this helping? There are a couple of things that I’ve learned to do on these trips that helps.
First, you have everything you need to deal with what is going to happen on this trip inside you and your team. The Holy Spirit inside you will be not only a source of strength for you but for others on this trip. His work in you may just be the piece of encouragement that someone else needs. You will find His encouragement in those around you. Look around at each other – that’s the hands, feet, and face of the Holy Spirit on this trip.
So love and listen to each other. Every day, carve out time when all of you can get in a circle and look at each other face to face. Talk about what you saw, what you are feeling, what you are thinking and listen to each other. Doesn’t have to be long and drawn out. But do this everyday. Pray with each other and for each other every day.
Second, eat ice cream. Ever notice the only thing you can do when you eat ice cream is eat ice cream? You can’t multi-task with ice cream. You have to just be in that moment eating ice cream. So eating ice cream is really about two things.
First, try to find time every day to ‘eat ice cream’ with God. Get up early, stay up late but just take a few moments and sit and listen and be in His presence.
It’s also about ‘being in the moment.’ Don’t get hung up on the schedule or what is next. Just be in the moment. Be totally there. Focus on the ice cream because it melts fast. So don’t get distracted. The schedule is going to change – weather, transportation, food issues – there are about 1,276 things that you can’t control on this trip. So don’t try to. Be in the moment. Eat the ice cream.
But it’s also about ice cream. Ice cream is my comfort food so while literal ice cream may not be a possibility, find something to love there and enjoy.
Finally, you saw us a church stand up to pray for you on Sunday. Get a mental image of that right now in your mind. That’s the reality of all missions trips. The few get to go while the many stand up for you praying for you. It’s not just our church that is praying either. Every support letter you sent out, every relative, people connected to Trash Mountain, their leaders and workers, the Honduras community that you are going to – there is an army of people praying.
That’s power beyond understanding.
It’s going to be an awesome trip. Praying for you all.