Written by Sue Lyford
Our mission in West Virginia on Butler Mountain was to tear down and rebuild a deck for a lady named Gladys. Her old deck was dilapidated and unsafe. Gladys definitely had more issues than a bad deck, roof, and mail box, all of which our group repaired, but then so do all of us as individuals. I find that even though I am able to help others and provide them with some improvement in quality of life physically and spiritually these mission trips also enable me to see where I need to improve the quality of my own life – specifically my own relationship with Christ.
My anxiety about going on the mission trip for whatever reason, whether its fear of the unknown or my social anxiety, definitely crops up and is evident to me when my eczema decides to show itself – I call it my stress bumps! It often appears before I am even aware that I’m stressed and internalizing all of my feelings and fears. Sometimes I just need to face what I dread most and most of the time I find I have nothing to dread! Trust in the Lord and He will take care of us! I seem to learn this lesson over and over and over again.
Working with the team I saw we are all in the same boat. Our anxiety and fear manifests itself in different ways. Some of us work quietly helping out any way possible, some speak their mind about everything, some worked harder or longer, some take charge of miscellaneous jobs and some avoid different jobs. Regardless we all gave our best effort and together we were able to complete our tasks for Gladys in a week’s time. It took all of us with our strengths and weaknesses. In spite of our differences in how we see and handle things we all were striving for the same thing – inner Peace – a gift from God. We all united as a group to make someone’s life better. Gladys may not get much pleasure herself out of her new deck because of her physical constraints but she can have peace knowing that others out of God’s love wanted to take care of her needs and that others will be safe walking on her deck, her roof won’t leak, and her mailbox won’t fall over.
Yet again I learned that He is in control and that in giving our troubles and concerns to God, we can find peace and comfort in knowing that He will guide us in all our missions in life.