When I look back on my time on earth may it not show pursuits full of selfish waste and idle indulgence, rather with stories being faithful and available for God. I always knew that missions should be a compelling priority as a believer and had good and not so good experiences serving in Arizona, Tijuana, and East Asia. Last year I sought an opportunity by asking churches what they had available. The issue was, I only had 5 days allotted off and many of the ones I found were too expensive.
Behold the power of Google. I found Global Frontier Missions which asked to choose a week and submitted an application last year. However, there was limited space and I didn’t apply early enough to join last summer, so I waited and felt a little dejected. However, I’m sure the timing worked out as it did. I read through the information packet and move through my checklist:
– Write and pass out support letter
– Purchase plane ticket.
– Get time off work
Goals: share Christ, make new friend(s), visit Museum of Fine Arts, try Bluebell ice cream
I told my coworkers that I was going to Texas for the first time. Not all have heard the term “missions”. It is a unique way to spend a vacation I suppose. I mean I’m going by myself, don’t know anyone there, and really it’s not the most ideal place to visit. And it may be a risk to go along with a program I randomly found, that’s definitely where faith comes in. There were no negative presentiments when communicating with the coordinator in any case and the application process was well organized. I was humbled by the support given by my friends and prayed with them in the days leading up to the trip.
The day arrives:
630am waking up in the morning gotta look fresh gotta hop on the plane.
I feel unprepared
I fear that nothing will happen
I fear that I’ll fail in some way
I fear my bad side will come out
But God can.
So no, wasn’t feeling too keen on leaving paradise…but I remind myself it’s not for my sake and it’s best to deny oneself and overcome by moving forward.
This would be the first time going on a layover flight. Two for the price of one! So that’s what that feels like. No way I’m dealing with baggage claim and I don’t do well with extra fees. Carry on/ carry on~
ONT > Dallas Fort Worth > Hobby Airport in Houston
I arrived to Dallas Fort Worth airport and reset my Kindle Fire to central time. I saw this when I landed…
Dunkin’ donuts! When you come to Cali huuuuuuh?!
I am above you all (y’all) with wings of anticipation suspended on hopes and dreams (don’t think about Titanic or Lost or Flight)
I arrived late in the afternoon to Hobby Airport and was picked up by the coordinator R where we met with the interns and the church group of 7 from CBC Dallas Fort Worth and a local man who drove down. We just missed introductions and orientation was under way. They explained about the first step when meeting with refugees which is clearing stones (misconceptions) with other cultures. After that one goes on to sowing, watering, harvesting, and discipleship which will result in leadership development. And more guidelines such as our position as learners alongside the lost rather than people who try to shake others’ religious foundations which would cause them to hold fast in defense. Our role is to build bridges and not to treat an unbeliever like a project since a relationship should be developed first. There are also invisible cues where it’s not ideal to approach the opposite gender and to eat what is offered to you. And we singles are to refrain from romantic conduct amongst our group or the refugees which could get us sidetracked and mess up our witness. Just as well since my heart is somewhere in South England anyway.
And then we had dinner. They knew about my gluten and lactose intolerance and got me a Domino’s gluten free crust with no cheese. Aw.
We were shown a movie depicting a group of boys who made a perilous journey from Sudan and made it to refugee camps. I feel like my life’s struggles do not compare when seeing the suffering children burying their peers along the way. The refugee camps are considered a sanctuary but do not provide much food or occupation and to me it seemed like a prison where there was little hope of change. This happens to many countries due to violence or political conflicts. Some of them are chosen by our government to relocate to the United States where they have the debt of transportation fees and required to pay it back after a period of 3 months in addition to their housing. Any education or career from their country is void here and they are cut off from their familiar community but still feel pressure to support their family back home and want to do everything they can to bring them here too. I can’t imagine the displacement and isolation which I’m sure was and is still the reality for many immigrants including my parents and a lot of adults in my life. On a lighter note, it was funny to see their curiousity over the concept of light switches and eating straight from the mayonnaise packet. Also, cream of Ritz cracker soup doesn’t seem half bad.
Then we got into groups for the game/ activity where we choose 1 person out of over a dozen individuals of various nationalities, religions, age, and dependents to live in our country. It could be complicated when considering this is only a surface glimpse of the process that actually happens.
I got a ride in a van with the interns to where we would be staying for the week. For some reason they thought I was from Canada, which, not having it, I quickly cleared up. I found that the interns were from various states and they all found the program through Google as well. Boss.
Side note: They have wifi in the apartment complex. I purposefully fasted from internet for the week since it would 1) distract my focus 2) simulate a real missions trip and 3) don’t see its function. NBD!
A group of us went to Sonic for their half price shakes and there was an ongoing peanut butter shortage. It put a damper on things and I remembered when I went to Sonic a week ago and they ran out of pineapple haha. FWP much?