Last month, I led an excited group of nine ROAR students from our school at Living Stones Church in Crown Point, Indiana, to Tegucigalpa, Honduras, for nine days. Bringing folks who have never been on a mission trip before (which applied to almost everyone on our team) is my favorite type of trip! It’s always so encouraging to me to watch people jump into outreach with passion, share their testimony for the first time (and actually see people all around respond to the gospel), effectively pray for people in spite of the language barrier, and see God move in ways they could never before imagine–through them! The students ministered unselfishly, getting outside of their comfort zone to share the love of Jesus to those who have never heard.
A lot of times someone will go on a mission trip thinking they are going to change the world. But what really happens is that their own world gets changed, and they are never the same again! Here’s an excerpt from one of our ROAR students, Stephanie, as she reflected on what God did in and through her the week we were there.
From Stephanie: Honduras, you have my heart and my prayers. You are my new friends and new family. You are treasures that I will keep forever. Honduras has changed me in so many ways. It's brought me closer to God and has left me with a burning passion to show those who don't think they are worthy or deserving of God’s love, the ones who think they are unreachable, that God loves them in spite of who they are or what they have done.
I went into this mission trip not knowing exactly what God's plan was for me on it, and I came home with a love so deep for His people in this country, I can hardly explain it. While walking, I saw with open eyes a new world where poverty was on every corner, where there was lack of water, or at best, lack of clean water, and where electricity and fuel are so expensive that hardly anyone can afford to buy them. Children work instead of going to school, parents fight to survive, women don’t know their worth, and men just need a Father to love them.
Yet in all their chaos, grief, and struggles, it amazed me that I saw joy on their faces. Those who already knew and loved God would walk miles just to come and worship Him with other believers. I am in awe, and I am so undone. I am forever thankful that God placed these people in my life so that I might have the opportunity to pray for them–and if they didn’t already know the Lord, that I could tell them that there is One who loves them with an everlasting love, who will never leave them or forsake them.
I am so thankful that God chose me to love them. Honduras, you will always be in my prayers–you're now at home in my heart!
Many thanks to Michelle Johns and her team for so graciously and excellently hosting us on this trip. Please consider sending a team to join her. Your people will never be the same again!!!