God is on full display in Rwanda

It has been nearly a year and a half since my two-week stay in Rwanda. There’s no doubt it was transformative and life-changing. When time allows distance from an impactful experience, I can discern more keenly what God was doing with me and the lasting transformation He has brought into my life through that experience.

Reflecting on what it meant to join BelPres’ mission team to Rwanda, three primary emphases struck me. First, top of mind, are the people I developed friendships within Rwanda. As an example, Jado – our cook at the AEE guest house – caringly provided delicious food daily and authentically was interested and concerned for what we did and who we are.

Along with so many others, Jado embodies the second emphasis – the relentless commitment of hospitality displayed by our hosts. Sharing a meal in a community leader’s home, being welcomed into a traditional village celebration, we were always esteemed with respect and honor. At times, I was a bit uncomfortable, perhaps feeling not deserving. It reflected the open hearts of a people whose chief commitment is to love God and all neighbors.

My final reflection about my mission experience: God is on full display in Rwanda. Everywhere you turn, people demonstrate their obvious affection for Jesus. All ages dance in joy, sing with strength, and live their commitments to Christ publicly – a stark contrast to a passive reserve that shrouds our faith in America. Forever changed by Rwanda, I continuously pray that God will provide more: more sustainable support for the youth of Rwanda, more hospitality and expressiveness in my faith, and more opportunities for our community to travel to Rwanda to experience firsthand the love of God through the global mission.

The Impact of Short Term Missions

It is an honor for us to facilitate and receive ‘Mission Teams’ for service in Guatemala. These Teams come from across North America and sacrificially give of themselves for 7 to 14 days to evangelism, construction, teaching, food distribution, medical outreach and so much more. Truly, they bless Guatemalans and we thank God for each and every Team.

We have become increasingly aware of the impact on Team Members, the blessings they receive from our Staff, and those we serve. I thought it would be good to share a few testimonies from Team Members, trusting they will be an inspiration to you.

A Pastor wrote: “The effect of this Mission experience had on my personal and spiritual life was to focus more attention on people. I often become overly concerned for the organizational work that I lose (contact) with people. In Guatemala, my focus was entirely upon the team, leaders, teachers, volunteers, children, and the wider community. As for future interests in Mission, I am very committed to supporting and encouraging His Church to give, pray and go.”

A Team member wrote: ”This trip brought me so much closer to God. Preparing for this mission trip brought me back to God after years of turning my back on Him. Seeing what we have to what the people in Guatemala have, has me more thankful to God for my life…I just want to be closer to Him and to serve Him with all my heart.”

A Young man wrote: This Mission had a great effect on my life: to be able to experience such a part of the world, then returning to our own world and seeing it with new eyes. Everyone should take a trip like this.”

A Lady wrote: “This was an amazing experience from the beginning to the very last day. I loved every minute of it and feel so very blessed to have been part of it. »

Other comments included: “I left a large part of my heart in Guatemala; I want to go back every year. I was so humbled by the experience. I learned to speak the name of the Lord more clearly. »

We could fill a book, even a library, with testimonies! We humbly thank God for those who take the time and make the sacrifices necessary to be part of a Mission Team and to join us in what God is doing!

Why not join a Mission team?

 

Come to the Discover Your Impact Lunch Sunday, March 31 at 12:15pm in S-140 to learn about upcoming short term Mission trips at BelPres.  Questions?  Contact impactteams@belpres.org