Thursday, July 14, 2005

NYC Mission trip Blog

Well hey there, kids. Guess we have an ongoing trend with these mission trip blogs- but aren't they great?? I actually don't have anything to do with the creation of this one, so if I do make it to a computer I'll probably post to the divadomain. But check this link as well to see what our team is doing.

32 of us head out early Saturday afternoon to spend a week in the Big Apple where we'll be painting and cleaning up an inner-city middle school. Mostly this is just a trip so we (Brentwood Baptist) can scout out the Bronx area where we'll be working to possibly start planning a new church for this area. I struggled with feelings of guilt for several months and weeks leading up to this trip. Was this just a cheap, glorified vacation for me? We'll be working from 8-5 every day, and granted, it will be hard work, but all our nights are free. I will have free reign in New York City- one of my favorite places in the world to see friends, go sightseeing, and see as many shows as is financially possible! What kind of mission trip is that??? I knew beyond doubt that God wanted me on this trip though, the same way I felt him lead me to South Africa last year, but not reaffirm that for this year. So why was I feeling guilty for planning to go to on this Kairos mission trip to New York when I felt pulled by the Lord to be there? All I can say is that I have prayed about this trip a Lot, and here I am, still leaving tomorrow.

It has finally been impressed upon me that our team is like Joshua and Caleb, sent in by Moses to scout out the Promised Land. We will go in, see the giants, but see the overwhelming goodness that God has for us there as well, and we will go back to the elders and report what we have seen. Yes, we will be doing visible and tangible good works for this middle school and this area, but our experience will be our own lives changed, and the lives of the people we encounter through this trip- both in NYC and back here in TN. The actual physical labor we are doing is only a small part of the big picture. God has much bigger things for us I think, and I'm excited to see what that is.

6 comments:

daddy b said...

As usual, my first thought was " If you want to help someone, go downtown and do it. Why does it have to involve leaving town and spending money that I know you can't really afford."
And as usual, you put it all in perspective for me.
Have a great trip and keep doing what God would have you do instead of daddy.. God is much older and wiser.

Mark Kelly Hall said...

Amanda,

I can definitely relate to your thoughts about whether your motivations are selfless or selfish. I've always enjoyed the travel and adventure aspects of missions (nearly always financed by other people's money) to the point where I wonder if I'm not there for that reason above all. But I do try to make the most of the time alloted for work, too, so I guess that "guilt" becomes a motivating factor in itself....hmmm...maybe that's the carrot these missions folks have been holding in front of us all along. Anyway, good stuff happens and we can only do what we can do and trust God to iron out those things that are too deep for us to reach, including our deepest motivations.

There was a good "Friends" episode about this topic, where Phoebe tries to figure out if it's possible to do anything with no selfish motive involved, since when you do something good for someone you get some sort of reward, even if it's just feeling good about it. Pretty insightful line of thought, especially for a sitcom. My answer is "not without Christ."

So go, work, then relax, have fun, enjoy yourself, don't spend too much money and let God do the heavy lifting!

Mark

emilyb said...

I'll be praying for you, my dear! Also, your link doesn't work...FYI.

Amanda said...

I saw that episode... Joey tried to take over the Telethon :o)

thanks em- I fixed the link.

MamaB said...

You are going there for the right reason or you wouldn't be going--that's my take on the whole thing.
Will miss you much but will say prayers and send happy thoughts that you reach people and make a difference in their lives. Love you, Mom

Adam said...

Amanda, I am in charge of posting to the Kairos NYC blog, but so far Cathy hasn't emailed me anything to post! I will add you as an authorized poster to the "Official" blog... please post!!