Life is moving way too fast. Honestly, the last two months have been a bit of a blur. Big stuff has happened in the mad rush to the end of the school year…college age events, Ezra’s crazy birthday party, Mother’s day, weddings, and another incredible trip to Romania.
I’ve been super excited about going back to Romania. This was the third group of college students I’ve had the opportunity to lead to work with Forget Me Not Ministries and I’ve seen some absolutely awesome things happen on these trips. I’ve seen Jesus junk up students’ plans, change their career paths, open their eyes to what God is doing globally. And so to have the privilege of returning is something I’ve been praying over for months.
And this trip did not disappoint.
It’s tempting, as outsiders, to come into a trip like this with an “American Superhero” mindset…that we’ll magically “fix” the situation with our good intentions and some good old fashioned grit. But as our cultures collide, we come to see that God wants to do something in us often before He wants to do something through us. Missions is a humbling experience…we try to save the day and end up facing the truth that there is only one Savior and He wants to save us too. Confidence wanes as curveballs and setbacks, last minute changes and broken tools drive home the reality that our plans aren’t always the best…our sincere remedies can still be sincerely wrong for the situation. And by fumbling through to that realization, we find our hearts humbled, and God can work with that.
He can change the world with that.
I’m so proud of the team I took this year. They worked so hard and they loved so big. Each team member was uninhibited in the way they chose to love on the children we encountered there. They learned how to work together as a team, they opened their hearts readily, and I personally saw so much growth in each of them. I completely believe that the relationships they formed on this trip will last and I count myself fortunate to have gotten to go with them.
And, as we reminded ourselves frequently, our team was there for only a couple weeks and then we went home, to the staff at FMN…Romania is home. Forget Me Not is a light in a very dark place. They work day after day with a seemingly endless cycle of abuse, neglect and poverty, yet are joyful and hopeful and graceful. And they are incredibly selfless in the way they serve the people there, the way they serve the children they care for, and the way they served our team. FMN is an visionary and compassionate ministry…I so believe in what they are doing. So to take students to be exposed to it, to serve within it and to come home as advocates of it is amazing.
And I get a front row seat to how God is changing the lives of college students in Southern Indiana through the little ones in Romania.
For stories and more pictures from the trip visit The Return.