August 07, 2005

Not enough..


I haven't packed at all. Normally this wouldn't worry me because I could easily just bring nothing and buy everything there. But we're going camping so there are so main essentials that I *need* to pack.

I need to finish the Longlac slideshow before I leave. I got the pics on Thursday at midnight. Friday was busy because of fellowship. Saturday, all day Stan & Yee Lee's wedding. Which leaves Sunday, Monday, Tuesday.

But what I really wanted to post about was about Longlac -- not enough time spent there. Jasmine basically hit the nail right on the head, on what I've been thinking about the most over the past week, about Longlac. One week was not enough time. One week is nothing.

Alf and I talked extensively about the topic of missions and how one week wasn't enough to do anything. From the missionaries standpoint, 1 week is a small taste, like many say -- an "eye-opener", but in terms of doing something significant from his/her point of view, kinda useless. I look at it this way: Did we accomplish anything? Yes. Did we do God's work? Yes. Will it make a difference? Unsure.

Case in point, Anita and Gladys are travelling to China to teach business stuff to students there. How significant is that? To the person, it may seem like nothing. Your objective is to teach a topic, while your mission is to interact with the people there, build relationships and maybe in a few months you might build a strong enough relationship to share the gospel with them. Unfortunately though, you're only going for 1 week.

The bigger picture though, is that you're part of a large group that is streaming in teachers on a weekly basis, just one of the many faces headed down there, and over those large mass of people, relationships will be developed and opportunities will eventually arise. It's a collective effort. Similarly, Longlac had 3 teams going. We went for a week but 2 other teams went prior to us. The larger picture is the 3 weeks' worth of people coming in to build relationships with the children and adults. The purpose of Longlac was to teach about God, so less time was required -- however, in both cases there is that bigger picture that encourages us to believe that we really did make a difference.

We put the time in, God does the rest.

Alf suggested that if I wanted to make a real impact, I should sell all my belongings and move into the reserve. After a few months of tanning I might be dark enough to pass for a First Nations native.

I guess that moment when he suggested this crazy notion was the first time I've ever considered doing full time ministry.


Anonymous said...

There are many different parts to play within God's mission..

out_there_q said...

hey! not a crazy notion! but do consider your week's offering (was it sacrificial?) The difference we do or don't make is business to be sorted out between Him and you. Let's talk about long-term stuff...

Tiffany said...

i wanted to stay longer.

someday, i want to do long-term stuff. or maybe just lots and lots of short-term stuff to help out long-term teams.

akt said...

I entirely agree with you that impact on a person can really be most effective whe you're there long term and when we're part of their daily lives...until we're ready to make that committment, this is where it's at. Though ST trips have their purpose in God's overall plan..would you have ever considered LT if you never went for this week?

out_there_q said...

sounds like we're looking at the matter of ministry as a thing to do. Christ's example, and Paul took on the challenge, was _incarnation_. Anita's right; would the issue of life-long service have entered the realm of possibilities, had it not been for this 1-wk glimpse?

eBrian said...

Impact on the individual is more of a self-centred way of looking at missions -- what *I* got out of it vs. what *they* got out of it.

I do see how STs can be a stepping stone towards LTs. And yes, I wouldn't have seriously considered LTs before until now. I know that God is stirring up something in me that has come as result of our trip to Longlac, but I can't help but also feel as if there's that little bit of self-centeredness of me thinking "Yes, I did that. It felt great!".

The difference being that today, in addition to that I would say: "And I want more!"