Monday, June 20, 2011

Rio Medical Mission Journey Update: WE'RE HOME!

We're home! It seems like we've been gone for 10 months and also 10 days. It went on forever and seemed like a dream—all at the same time. God moved. Lives were changed. We were changed.

Before we left for Rio, during one of our preparatory team meetings, Sharon Fairchild presented us with a Brentwood Baptist Missions Training & Education Manual. It gave us tons of information to prepare for the trip, including a section called "Reentry & Debriefing."

What's funny about this is that I barely skimmed through it before we went. I was confident I wouldn't have a problem re-entering my own culture and adjusting appropriately. That, my friends, couldn't be farther from the truth.

The booklet says, and I quote:
"Something has changed very dramatically while you were gone. YOU! Now you may experience re-entry shock, which is the unexpected confrontation with the familiar. You may find yourself wondering: Is everyone feeling the same way I am? How do I share what I've learned? How should these changes affect me?"

Ya think?! That lady knew exactly what she was talking about.

Today, as I ease back into American culture, I'm personally finding it difficult to return to normalcy. I find myself wanting to go back to the place where I saw God move, to the people who soaked him in, to the family of believers who embraced us. But that's not reality. This is.

Back at home, here's what we can do:
  • Cherish the moment and understand that our explanations of the experience may be inadequate to actually being there and seeing it. Just like Mary "kept all these things in her heart and thought about them often" (Luke 2:19, NLT), so can we rejoice in what God did and relish that moment with Him.
  • Be thankful for the experience and grateful for where God has placed us right now in life. I may not be called to sell all I own and move to Rio to minister full-time (like I kind of want to do at this very moment), but I can serve the least of these right where I am. A good friend reminded me of this: "When someone has been given much, much will be required in return; and when someone has been entrusted with much, even more will be required" (Luke 12:48, NLT). We live in a pretty, clean, manicured, middle- to upper-class area of the world. Without feeling guilt for what we have, we're to be grateful God has divinely placed us in this place at this moment in time, and with that blessing comes responsibility and action. That should be one reason for taking some action around this joint.
  • Share, share, share about your experience and what God did in the lives of others and you. Sometimes it takes flying across the world to move us spiritually and shift our worldview. However, in either place—at home or abroad—God has a heart for the poor, brokenhearted, and captives. When you spend time with them, serve them, and love them well, then you'll see Jesus face to face and walk closer to Him in obedience.
Thank you to all who covered us in prayers. They didn't go unanswered. The kingdom was expanded. Lives were transformed. We experienced sanctification. And His name was lifted higher. To God be the glory for all that happened in Rio de Janeiro!

Christ is all,
Kaylan Christopher


I.B.Q mais que uma IGREJA é uma FAMÍLIA. said...

miss left

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