VCS Guatemala as Short Mission Trip
In all my years of attending short mission trips, probably had least enthusiasm preparing for the recent trip to Guatemala. I faced decline in faith as I started to attend an out-of-state college and hoped the trip to help restore my faith. I honestly did not know what to expect because delivering vision related service seemed too professional for my ability and also because I have never traveled to Latin America before. The trip proved to be a great experience for me, both healing and challenging me to love my neighbors and God. We had two operating groups for diagnosis and surgery. Equipment arriving late prevented the surgery team from properly treating the patients in a timely manner, some of them who have traveled many hours to be treated. It was hard just watching the patients, knowing that I could not do anything for them. I think everyone at the surgery team shared same feelings of helplessness and frustration. But the negative emotions were a step to help us rely on God more.
We must be humble when performing services for greater cause or in God’s name because external circumstances can easily disrupt our design. I am sincerely amazed by the level of cooperation and respect each members showed each other despite differences in age and experiences. Without everyone’s contribution and dedication, we would not have completed the mission successfully. In fact, not only we successfully operated on as many patients as our initial planning, we even treated cataracts on both eyes for some.
I joined the mission with little expectation, but God fulfilled so much more than simple restoration of faith. I gained greater appreciation for God’s work in underprivileged, dangerous areas and for those who faithfully do God’s work whether through joining missions or taking up permanent shepherding position. I hope I can take this experience to undertake more responsibility in doing God’s work.