I had an interesting discussion with my family when I got back from Guatemala. It was about how to make a difference in a place where we had little connections and little resources. Coming back from Guatemala, I was left feeling like there was more that we could be doing. I saw so many kids that were starving, without clean water, and in need of an education, and it didn’t seem like a one week VBS could possibly be helping them. And although our team has taken steps towards developing projects in Guatemala, it’s difficult to execute them over a short amount of time and without the financial means to do it.
So what did we do during our mission trip to Guatemala? In a few words, we showed up. We showed up for the teenagers who might not be interested in learning about God, but might want to see what these Americans have to say. We showed up for the kids who have to take care of their younger siblings and don’t feel like they have time for fun anymore. We showed up for the community who has the desire to make the place they call home better, and are willing to work hard for it.
There are so many unknowns when it comes to mission trips, and so much is uncertain in Guatemala. The individuals who go on this trip have to be comfortable enough and faithful enough to allow God to be the one in control. We can’t say “look at the things we’ve done” because we cannot do anything without God. I would love to see this mission grow in the future. I hope to see the children that I met stay in school longer. I want to see businesses growing so parents can provide for their families. I hope to see increased opportunities for women to thrive so that they can live independently if necessary. Messiah Lutheran Church, there is no better time to get involved in Guatemala. The harvest is plentiful here! There are people who need our help, and I would encourage you to pray about ways we can grow God’s kingdom in this place. But I thank God it is not up to us alone. Our first step is simply this: we have to show up.