It has been a little over a week since Melissa Meadows, a young lady from our church, and I returned from a mission trip to Peru with a couple of other team members.. The effects of such a trip do not wear off easily nor soon. I’ve looked at the pictures repeatedly, written in a journal a little about the experience, and talked about it quite a bit (imagine that!).
I thought I’d share a few of my thoughts about the trip: 1) It was a great trip – a good mixture of experiencing another culture, sight-seeing and enjoying God’s creation, making new friends, sharing God’s Word and work with others – both in the mountains and in the city, and watching God at work among the people of Peru as well as our team.
2) It was a special treat to be a part of Melissa’s first mission trip and watch her grow spiritually and even excel, right before my eyes! To have had even a small part in making that happen is a great blessing!
3) The task of ministering to the people of that mountain region is very daunting, but God is more than able. Looking to the future is a bit overwhelming, yet looking back, we can clearly see how God has already done great things, so there is no doubt He will continue. Financial needs, travel concerns, health blessings, language and cultural differences, spiritual preparations – God met and exceeded all our needs!
4) A follow-up trip really soon would be very beneficial. How could it happen and who would go? Could we possibly return soon ourselves?
5) The trip was harder on me physically than I thought it would be. My back and chest muscles were really put to the test with long plane rides, bumpy car rides up and down the mountain roads, lots of walking in the mountains and city, and not much sleep. (For those who might not know – I had a triple bypass surgery on Jan. 23rd of this year!) But God is good and I more than survived – I really enjoyed the trip!
6) And speaking of survival – Melissa and I had planned to go last summer, but the rest of the team did not materialize. I hated disappointing her, but we just could not go then. So, we determined to try again this summer. Meanwhile, we discovered that I had several blockages in three arteries and had to have a triple bypass in January. I wonder now if I would have survived the trip last summer! Could I have made such a trip in the high altitude with that kind of blockage and with little chance of any quick medical response? It seems to me that perhaps God saved my life by postponing the trip until this year!
7) What does the future hold? I don’t know, but God does! So, we’ll just try to follow His lead.