In the same year that I accepted Christ as Lord over my life and returned to church, I started having dreams. I was dreaming of children that had no shoes and little clothing, children who looked at me with a hunger that was both physical and spiritual. Surprisingly, I had never even heard about mission trips at the time.
These dreams continued so I felt I needed to experience a mission trip. I signed up for a short one to Cuba. I led worship there through dance and got to share the gospel with hundreds of Cubans. Cuba revealed a whole new world to me; I returned knowing that I was meant to do this, that God had designed me to bring His love and His word to all kinds of people. While I was attending school and working, I tried to follow the phrase: “make your home your mission field.” But I knew I would be traveling somewhere. Eventually, I went to Slavic Missionary Bible School in Florida.
After preparation and prayer, I was sent to Tanzania, Africa, which had been my first choice from the very beginning. I had marked off different countries but inside, I was thinking: Tanzania. We stayed in Tanzania for five months. We worked in orphanages, we visited leprosy camps, we went from house to house talking about Jesus and handing out food. We visited medical clinics and prayed for the healing of people in the waiting room. God directed us in many ways, big and small.
We ended our mission with a short trip to Israel but by then, I had such blisters on my feet from worship-dancing in Africa that I could not walk. I ended up visiting Israel in a wheelchair.
Mission trips are amazing. Every time you go, you come to a realization that while you are going to “make disciples of all nations”, you are the one being discipled instead. You think you’re there to serve others but you are the one that receives the blessing.