Saturday, July 28, 2012

Youth Mission Trip 2012 Days 3-4

The week is flying by! We are making significant progress at each of our work sites.  We’re also building relationships with and loving on the kids at the day camps for the disabled.  It has been exciting to see how God is working both in and through us. 

Yesterday after another hard day’s work, the group had the night off, so we went to a nearby state park. We spent some time down by the beach swimming and recreating, grilled up some perfect burgers, and ended the night with meaningful sharing and an outdoor worship session.

Our youth has connected well with the other church groups sharing LifeStream with us for the week. And our Worship Team has been phenomenal at leading both the morning and evening programs.

One of our youth crews is spending the week at an animal shelter. The woman who runs the shelter is Beth. The crew members who have spent the week with her will have plenty of stories to share about this incredible person. They spend their days doing anything that needs to be done, especially the dirty work of cleaning up after all those adorable animals.

The teens have had a chance to see the James passage in action. “In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.” (v.17) Jesus is the life – the guarantee of what is to come and the sustainer of the faith we live by now.

Pray for our team: that they would have energy to finish strong and that they would look for God to work. 

Monday, July 23, 2012

Youth Mission Trip 2012 Day 2

We are finally here! After months of planning and praying our group made it safely on Sunday afternoon to the beautiful area of Botavia, a small city outside of Cincinnati. LifeStream Christian Church is our base of operations. The amenities are simple, a stretch from what most of us are used to back home. But spirits are high and the group has exhibited a mature attitude of willingness every step of the way.
The mission team of 34 was divided among a number of smaller crews, which were then assigned to roughly half-a-dozen local ministries. Two of the largest assignments were Stepping Stones and Matthew 25 ministries. Stepping Stones is a day camp for disabled children. Each worker was assigned to an individual camper to spend the day with. Their activities included water games, board games, dance parties, boating, fishing, and valuable one-on-one conversations.
Another handful of crews spent the day at Matthew 25 ministries. Matthew 25 takes in donations of everything from clothes to household supplies and sends them to groups in need all over the world. Our teams spent the day stuffing pillows and mixing paint. These options allowed our team members to connect with other students from around the country as well as a chance to get messy.  
Before the trip every member of the team was asked to memorize James 2:14-19. This short passage discusses the relationship between faith and works. It begins as such, “What good is it, my brothers, if a man claims to have faith but has no deeds?” Every member on this team at one point in their lives has made a claim to faith in Christ. Week of Hope asks the same question as James, what good is a motionless faith? Pray this week that as our teens move their bodies, God will move their hearts.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Youth Mission Trip 2012 Day 1

We arrived safely in Cincinnati. More to follow as internet connection allows. (No easy access.)