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Mission Trip Update!

As we mentioned last week, some New Beginnings Church members went on a mission trip this week to Jacksonville, FL to help with hurricane relief. Here is an update as to how our trip is going and the presence of God we all have been feeling.

We are working on a three story house affected by Hurricane Irma. This house is in Middleburg, FL and sits on Black Creek River. Middleburg made national news as one of the towns severely impacted by the hurricanes. When Irma came through, it backed up all the rivers which is how this house was affected. It had 25 feet of standing water; this was halfway up the second floor. If you can, take a second to realize how much water was in this home. How much was destroyed in this home.

On our first day, it was safe to say we all learned something new. Between sanding, mudding, drilling, everyone had something to do and learned something from it. We are mainly working on the second floor which consists of the kitchen, dining room, living space, bedrooms and bathrooms. We ended our day feeling tired from the work we had done but also excited for the work ahead. We left having a good sense of our duties for day two and we were excited to get back to it.

Later that night we had a reflection time where we spoke about our day and had a small devotion. Our passage was Matthew 8:5-10 and from this we spoke on faith and authority. Real faith says, “God you said you’d do it and I know you will” or “Because you said it, I will do it.” During this time of serving, we are reminding we will always have authority over us in God. Because of this we put our faith in him to lead us in our time of serving.

Our youth pastor asked us “How did you feel your five senses in use today at the house?” From different people came different ideas on how we sensed God throughout our work. It also gave us a chance to reflect on the house and the conditions it went through. One member mentioned how corrotted the outlets were. They had serious damage down to them by the water and it made her realize, “wow, every inch of this space was damaged from the hurricane.” Even with something so small, your outlook can really be altered. Another touched on how he could see the waterline form the outside of the house. This really put things in perspective to him in regards to the amount of water in this home.

A big thing we took away from our first day was mistakes are going to happen and it is perfectly fine. I think people feel their work should be perfect because this is someone's home where they will live their lives. But, this isn’t about making it completely perfect. We are not professionals. We came to build a home for those who needed help. It is about trying and doing your best work. In the garage are scraps of sheet rock previously used by others. You can clearly see people cut them and intended to use them for a part of a wall but ultimately it was too big, too small or just not right. They made a mistake. Fortunately, we are able to use these pieces in different ways to make another part of the house. We can take something someone sees as broken and make it whole again. Someone's mistake could end up being very useful to another person.

At the end of the day, it is important to understand how serving is not just for the people we are helping. Serving also greatly impacts the people who working. It makes you feel great knowing you are giving up a week of your life to help someone whose life was completely shattered by this event. You feel humbled and grateful for the life you live and walk away, hopefully, feeling touched by God and all he does for us.

Stayed tuned for another update this week! Below are pictures from our second day at work.

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