Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Dare You to Move

I found some interesting statistics here on short term missions trips.

Who takes short term mission trips?

9% of American adults (only 3.5% of American adults went in the last 5 years)
11% of churchgoers
23% of evangelical Christians
12% of people ages 18-24
9% of people ages 25-43
7% of people ages 44-62
9% of people aged 63+

How do short-term mission trips affect those who go?

75% say the experience changed their life in some way
25% say it helped them become more aware of other people’s struggles
16% say it taught them more about poverty, justice, or the world
11% say it increased their compassion
9% say it enriched their faith
9% say it broadened their spiritual understanding
5% say it boosted their financial generosity

In Matthew chapter 14 we read that Jesus saw the crowd and had compassion on them. There is something to be said about seeing things with your own two eyes. A person can read about missions in a newsletter (or a blog like this), or you can view a visiting missionary's slideshow or video, but there is something powerful about actually going--smelling the smells, feeling the heat on your neck, getting your hands dirty as you minister to street children, making the leap from your seat at church to the other side of the world.

So far this year we have had visits from interns, mid term missionaries, and short term teams. We have another group coming next month, a team coming in the Fall and also a team that might be coming in December to do a Christmas blessing. If you have never gone on a short term missions trip, I challenge you--I DARE YOU. You will never be the same.

Christ is calling, how far will you go?

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Father's Day in the Philippines

Father's Day is a relatively new holiday in the Philippines. We enjoyed church service at Victory Christian Fellowship, then we played games in the afternoon, and then we ate at my favorite pizza place, Dos Marias, home of their famous thirty-two inch pizza.
Even though there are just five of us in our family, we got the big one. We brought half of it home because as most of you will agree, cold pizza is a great midnight snack and even better for breakfast.

Monday, June 15, 2009

First Day of School

Here is Eric and Faith outside of their new school on a very windy first day of classes. The morning was a little rough for Faithy, she found it hard to adjust from home school to school outside the home, but the day got better for her. They both made friends, and Eric was even elected to be on of the class officers. It will be weird to have them out of the house during the week days. This new school looks promising.

Today was also the first day of classes for the Sonshine Learning Center. It is hard to believe that we are starting our fifth year of preschool at the Sonshine Center.