Monday, June 3, 2013

10 Things to Remember Son...{and one more for your Dad}

Thirteen years ago my Man went on a mission trip to Honduras. I stayed home to take care of Cole who would be celebrating his first birthday a few weeks after Darrin returned and because I was 7 months pregnant with Megan. Tomorrow my Man leaves for his third trip to Honduras and this time he's taking the Boy with him. I'm thrilled for both of them and I'm a smidge worried about all of the traveling and about the possible primitive conditions and what if he gets sick or lost or says something funny and I miss it, and what if he just gets sad and misses his mamma {he is only 14 after all}? 

To help with that last concern, tucked snugly into a pocket of his bag is a note with some last minute instructions which probably says something like...

Dear Son, 
I trust this finds you looking toward the adventure that awaits you. When I was about your age, I went on a mission trip with my Dad too. Our trip was to a Hopi Indian reservation in Arizona. Aunt Becky was with us and the trip was 2 weeks long. It was such a long time to be away from home, BUT it was a huge learning and growing opportunity too. I'm so glad you are getting this opportunity. 
All these years later I remember a few things I learned while on mission: 
1.Be aware of your surroundings. For safety's sake, of course, but also so that you don't miss seeing, hearing, doing, or experiencing that other part of the world you are visiting. 
2.Things don't always go as planned and when they don't it's NOT the end of the world - just make the best of it. (You are already VERY good at this.) 
3.Poppy says, "Family First" - What this means for you is to treat your Dad with all kinds of respect. He's the real deal, he's also in a leadership role on your trip (and in life:-) which makes him super easy to pick on in front of others. Resist the urge. Sometimes people love to laugh at a leader - don't make it easy for them. Please have fun and laugh lots, just not at another's expense, you are traveling with your faith family and they deserve respect too! 

4.Be a good team member - go the extra mile. Like when you take out the trash when no one tells you to just because you see that it needs doing. Colossians 3:17 "And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him." In other words, work like Pappaw and give God glory. 
5.Be a loyal friend - it's the very way to have loyal friends. Use "building up words" when you have a chance. Do it sincerely, no false flattery from you, but when you see something praise-worthy take note! 
6.Look people in the eyes when you are being spoken to OR when you are speaking to them. It pays honor to the other party in the conversation THIS IS IMPORTANT. 

7.You are probably going to see some things that will break your heart. It will be important to talk to Dad or another team member about it. Don't be embarrassed to talk about such things with others~chances are, their hearts will be broken by the same things as well. 
8.PLEASE write faithfully in your journal about everything: what it feels like to be traveling with 30 people from your church family, what do you expect to find in this foreign country, how are you adjusting to the climate, what has the weather been like, what odd thing have you seen that you've never even thought about before, how are your friends faring on mission, what's it like to travel with your Dad, what did you do today that was awful, what was wonderful, what made you laugh, who is funnier than you expected, is God teaching you something...write it all down...when you are 40, you'll be so glad you did. 

9.Be kind to those in charge of feeding you. In my's one of the most challenging jobs in any country. Don't bite the hands that feed you, as the saying goes. It's a saying for a reason! Food prep for a large group is usually a thankless and tireless job and it is to be well appreciated.On the topic of food, remind your Dad to bring me back that Honduran vanilla that makes all of our cookies and muffins so much better.  

10.Remember whose you are. First of all,you belong to Christ...act like the Christian you are. Second, you are privileged to be growing up in a church family that loves you and has watched you grow for the last 10 years. Don't forget that you are no longer just a kid being cared for by your church family but are crossing the threshold on the other side of which you are an active, contributing member of that loving, nurturing church body. Serve them well. Third, you are a wonderful mixture of two dynamic loving families who are also cheering you on in this adventure. These same two families have poured their lives into watching you grow and mature into the boy you are now and into the man you are becoming...honor your family with your actions. Fourth, you are a child of two people who have a ridiculously high expectation that you should be a perfect young man on this trip. Your Dad and I are sorry about those expectations but your best...We'll love you no matter what...probably. Finally, you are your very own person...act out of respect to the young man God has made and has blessed and has given this opportunity.

In my Man's luggage there may or may not be a note that says something like this...

Dear Man,
PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE bring my son home safely.

Your Wife

PS Have a nice trip.
PPS PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE don't forget to bring back the vanilla!

Honduras Mission Team Commissioning Service 

{If you have a moment this week, please pray for these wonderful missionaries and their families and the people whom they will be serving in Honduras...many thanks!}

1 comment:

Sudeana said...

Love it! A bit teary, very proud and definitely praying!!

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