Monday Madness: The Beauty of Mission
Monday Madness from a Teen’s Mind
The Beauty of Mission
By: Addi Iken
Hi friends! It seems like it has been so long since I have written a blog. I mean it’s been like 2 weeks or something crazy like that! I want to thank both Tori and Joe for filling in for me. They wrote some really great blogs, and if you have not read those, go back and read them (there names are links to their guest blogs). You won’t regret it. Two weeks ago, Tori wrote a little bit about what I was doing over spring break; I was in Ecuador! I thought I should take this week to tell you all a little bit about my experience in Ecuador.
My primary goal in going to Ecuador was mission. My team and I helped at a homeless shelter, and we gave presentations in school as well, sharing the gospel with children from elementary school grade levels to high school grade levels. The beauty of mission is that God used this mission to not only impact the lives of others living in Ecuador, but to impact my life. The Lord taught me many important things, and I want to share with you two of those today–the importance of patience and the importance of listening.
The importance of patience: First, traveling required patience. Having 16 teammates there with you and having to travel on 4 different airplanes to Ecuador and 4 different planes back requires a lot of patience. We spent 2 full days traveling each way. We were either sitting on a plane or sitting in the airport waiting for our plane. Not a lot to do, so it was easy to get kind of restless and impatient. However, we had to stay patient in order to keep our traveling experience positive. Secondly, when you are dining with 16 of your teammates and some Ecuadorians (adds up to over 20 people), it takes quite a long time to order and get your food at restaurants. There were times when I wanted to complain and be grumpy because I was really hungry or wanting to go to bed, but I had to stay strong and be patient and joyful anyways. Because I chose a good attitude, it was an awesome trip!
Additionally, God taught me the importance of listening. Throughout the trip, I had several spiritual conversations with people. During one in particular, I was so focused on sharing the gospel and going through a booklet that I was not paying attention to the girl’s immediate struggles and needs. I needed to wait for God’s guidance and listen to what she had to say in addition to helping her through her struggles before I jumped in with my own presentation. Even when you may not feel like you are making a difference just by listening, being a listener is actually one of the most important people you can be.
Well folks, I don’t want to write too much and take too much time out of your busy schedules even though I have so many amazing experiences to share from being in Ecuador. However, I would like to present you with a couple of Addi’s famous life tips before you stop reading. Addi’s Life Tip #15 (read my other blogs for tips 1-14): Be patient! It’s as simple as that. Have a good attitude and do not focus on the bad things about your situation, but be patient and think of something positive. Addi’s Life Tip #16: A listener is one of the most important roles you can take in conversations. I mean it. You do not always need to be the center of attention. One of the best things in being a friend is listening without interrupting as they express their struggles, truly investing in them and paying attention to them.
I think that’s all for now. Remember these tips (not to brag or anything, but I think they are pretty relevant to today’s society). Have an awesome week, and Happy Monday!