A mission trip can provide an opportunity for Americans to share their talents and resources with the people of third world countries. While in a foreign country, one can build wells, vaccinate, donate, educate, and share the Christian faith. Working to improve the lives of poorer nations also has tremendous rewards for the volunteers. You will get so much more than you give. Volunteering abroad will broaden your perspective, give you a chance to see the benefits of your donation, and change your life forever by giving you a competitive edge in the job market, developing unique friendships, and strengthening your relationship with God.
Transition: Some people may say that there are lots of own problems in our own country that we should take care of rather than travelling to another country. I agree that we should continually strive to solve local and national poverty. However, a mission trip abroad offers you a chance to broaden your perspective in a way that even working with the most destitute Americans can not. In America, we tend to be self-contained, unlike being in Europe or Africa, where going into another country may be a short drive like going from Ohio into Michigan or Indiana. . Therefore, we are not exposed or fully immersed into other languages, cultures, and religions on a regular basis. B. Laura Schumer, a writer for focusoncampus. org, writes about her own experience saying: “In Honduras, many people live in small, one-room houses. They sleep on the floor and have never heard of air conditioning, although temperatures often hover around 90 degrees. They have practically nothing and often don’t know where their next meal is coming from. Yet without hesitating, they will serve you, their visitor, their last bit of rice…
Their generosity is overwhelming, and while we may think they are poor, spiritually they are rich. Missions give you a chance to experience their lives and discover why and how they live that way. “| saw this same spirit of generosity when I took a 2-week long mission trip to Liberia, Africa in 2014. C. Mission trips will cause you to look at people, resources, and events through a different lens. David Armstrong of shorttermmissions. com explains it best when he says,”You will experience sadness you haven’t felt before.
After you see real suffering, you won’t pay much attention to your complaining about how hard you’ve got it. You are even liable to feel guilty and uncomfortable about the nice things in your house and the food on your table. ” I felt these same feelings when I returned to the United States after seeing the suffering in Liberia. a. My view on people changed after being in Liberia when I heard kids complaining about the car their parents were giving them for their 16th birthday or how they are so tired of their old Iphone, and other petty dissatisfactions. . My perspective about resources also dramatically changed. I began to notice all the leftover food on people’s plates at restaurants and think about the actual names of people who could eat that food like my little buddy Soclo, who I became so attached to. c. World events also had new meaning to me. Like my classmates, before my trip, I paid little attention to what was going on in the news. Hearing about the Ebola virus in Liberia and its neighboring countries dramatically changed my views.
It was difficult not to get mad when I heard my classmates joke about the ebola virus because I was concerned that my new friends could be infected. Transition: A second benefit of going on a mission trip is being able to witness the changes you are making in the world. II. Mission trips give you the satisfaction of seeing where your effort, time, and money go. A lot of people argue that it makes more sense to donate $3000 to the people you are trying to serve than spend that much money on a trip to go there for two weeks.
While in theory this is true, in practice, not many of us are willing to donate large sums of money without seeing firsthand the results. We are never sure the money actually gets there and does not end up in the hands of some governmental or humanitarian agency. C. Seeing the conditions with our own eyes and meeting the people we are helping, actually motivates us to continue to want to give and see a difference in the lives of the people we have met. My girlfriend, Lizzy, has been on three Camphor Mission Trips in Liberia.
Because of the relationships with the people she has met, she wants to continue to go back and even when she can’t, she holds bake sales to raise money for them, Transition: It is my hope to motivate you to consider a mission trip for reasons other than just broadening your perspective or having altruistic feelings because there are some personal benefits in terms of your future. III. Mission trip experiences can benefit you personally in many ways. First, they will give you a competitive edge in the job market.
Gigi Starr of USA Today states, “Going to a foreign country for a volunteer experience is a huge boost on a resume. Employers love to see a person that can think outside the box and work past their comfort zone. The added benefits of teamwork, foreign language knowledge, and plain old hard work also add polish to the volunteer candidate. Since business now happens on a global scale, the volunteer is armed with useful, and potentially actionable, information”. Secondly, you will create new friendships with the people you went on the trip with as well as the people you met.
Jason Torrence from Mission Discovery believes, ‘When you combine teens, travel, and unfamiliar environments, your group will inevitably experience something random and unforeseen… Dealing with adversity as a group will strengthen them and make them more likely to support each other after they get back home. Adversity brought our group even closer when we landed in Monrovia, the capital of Liberia, on the day that ebola virus also arrived to that city. We were totally unprepared for this and it brought fear to our families and ourselves, so we became each other’s support system.
Going on a new adventure and having things in common with people that few others have like eating palm butter, watching out for Cassava snakes, and seeing little kids being scared of you in remote villages because they have never seen a white skinned person before, all contribute to establishing tight-knit friendships. 2. Not only did I draw closer with the people on the trip, but | established relationships with the people I met Despite the distance, friendships with Jesse, Francis, and Stephen have endured. Facebook, Instagram, and cell phones allow us to keep in contact. C. Finally, mission trips will strengthen your faith in God.
They help you see how blessed you are. You realize that “only but through the grace of God” do I live in a country where freedom is guaranteed, where prosperity is achievable with hard work, and where there is such abundance for so many. You see how much enthusiasm other cultures have for celebrating God’s word. This differs greatly from my church at home where people are checking their cell phones and watches when the service goes over 50 minutes. Here, people mumble their prayers or don’t sing because of insecurities or concerns about seeming too zealous. You will feel spiritually closer to God because you are doing his work.
Sharing what God has given you and the good news of his word, draws you closer to Him. Transition: I have now given you multiple reasons why a mission trip needs to be in your future! Conclusion: Volunteering abroad will broaden your perspective, gives you a chance to see the benefits of your donation, and will change your life forever by giving you a competitive edge in the job market, develop unique friendships, and strengthen your relationship with God. What other type of experience can do all that in less than a month? That is why I feel that all people should go on a mission trip.