by Kristin Asimakoupoulos
I’m feeling a little nostalgic this week! Around this time, for the past handful of years, I’ve packed some work gloves, put on my game face and set sail on a mission trip. Whether it be with 200 high school students or a handful of peers, every year has been equally different and powerful.
I mean, think about it! There a zillion different sensations that fuse together to make up the trip at large: the smell of sawdust and fresh paint, the realignment of your backbone after multiple nights of sleeping on concrete floors, the perfection of a slightly sun-warmed turkey and mustard sandwich after hours of physical labor, the sounds of both laughter peals and vulnerable tears as people’s souls connect with each other, the sight of worlds colliding and uniting for the sake of helping one another and giving glory to God. So good!
So am I bummed to not be maneuvering a cargo van across the border into Tijuana this week? For sure. But what I’ve come to realize is that service takes on so many different shapes and sizes. It’s such a simple concept, yet so profound. So often we exert so much energy and time preparing to serve in such a “big” way that we neglect to focus on how we can be serving one another in the immediate present.
This past Thursday (Maundy Thursday) we looked at Jesus’ last night with his disciples. It was during this time that Jesus humbly knelt down and washed his disciples feet. Such an act was seen as EXTREMELY atrocious and mind-boggling! But nonetheless, Jesus demonstrated his love and compassion through this small act.
Mission trips are powerful, impacting and wonderful, yes. But my prayer is that we have the mindset and heartset (I maybe made that word up) to see how we can demonstrate love and compassion in the small, everyday ways as well. Whether it be offering a word of encouragement to a weary friend or tackling the dirty dishes in the sink that aren’t yours…there is power in the little things.