Just like many of you, I have a bucket list. A few things are material acquisitions, but most are less tangible, less touchable goals. I would say rather than acquisitions, they are accomplishments.
I personally think the things we should work toward should not be for fluency, but for form. With form comes foundation and frame. It’s like building a house. If we practice having good form, we will build a strong foundation which leads to a strong frame, and so on.
One of my bucket list items will be fulfilled in six weeks. It will be a special time because it will be the first international mission trip I will lead with students from Southwestern Advantage. And not just that, but my oldest daughter, Madison, will also join me. This is truly going to be an epic week for me! Twelve of us, scattered all over the country, will come together to unite for a common purpose for a week in Masatepe, Nicaragua.
“Every Christian is either a missionary or an imposter.”
– Charles H. Spurgeon
This is strong language from Charles Spurgeon… but does it not hold true? Jesus told us in the Great Commission to go forth and make disciples of nations. As a Christian, if we are genuinely Christ followers, are we not to spread the Word for sake of growing the Kingdom? Should we not have faith with actions?
My personal mission for this mission trip plays into being not only the person I want to be, but the person God wants me to be. With that said, personal and spiritual growth will not be the only agenda item for the trip. With everything I want the Holy Spirit to show me and the things the Holy Spirit will show me, I fully realize I will not be prepared. I never am. No one really ever is. I must opens my eyes, ears, heart, and mind. But more importantly, I need to close my mouth. This trip parallels life and nothing I do in preparation for any mission trip or in life ever truly prepares me. God likes to keep me on my feet!
Here are some things I keep in mind as the journey approaches:
- I need to be fully vested in being present with Madison, each of the students, those we serve, and the iTeams team members.
- I must be intentional in my prayers for each conversation and each interaction I have with all who God puts before me.
- I must keep in mind I need to invest in people’s potential, not their past.
- I need to remain open to the things I need to learn about myself.
- I have lots to learn from others – more than I can teach.
- Humility remains my greatest asset. It’s the door to greater wisdom, greater understanding, greater faith.
I share these things because it occurs to me they need to be every day mini bucket list accomplishments – maybe more like check list accomplishments.
Here are a couple of things God tells us through the Bible as it relates to serving through missions. I’m all in. Where people need help, people need God.
Declare his glory among the nations, his marvelous deeds among all peoples.
– 1 Chronicles 16:24
Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?” And I said, “Here am I. Send me!” ”
– Isaiah 6:8-9