Saturday, July 2, 2011

Cherokee Mission Trip

Though this is much overdue, I thought that it would be a shame not to share how God worked in our mission trip. 

We took a group of 12 to Cherokee, NC to work on an Indian reservation where our church supports a missionary.  It was really exciting to be able to work along someone our church supports and who does this year round. We stayed at an old campsite in which cabins and better bath houses have been built. Other churches were there working in various avenues on the reservation, and we were able to come together at night to share in fellowship, worship, and talk about how God was working through the different teams. This was the fourth time for our church to go and my second time to go. For those of you who don't know much about the Cherokee reservation (which would have included me until I actually went there) there are issues with substance, physical, and sexual abuse. It's estimated that out of the 14,000-15,000 resigestered Indians on the reservation, only 1,000 attend church. It's definitely a place where hope is needed--and that's exactly what we were able to bring!

The men in our group worked throughout the week on a porch. They finished the roof but I didn't have a good picture of the completed project.

The rest of us did VBS at a local day care called Agelink. Along with VBS, we were asked to do some "light cleaning" which included washing walls, shampooing carpets, pressure washing the outside of two buildings, and cleaning all the windows inside and out. 

 There were some of the most PRECIOUS kids there! I could go on and on!

Rebekah Johnson is a friend of mine from Tuscaloosa that came with us on the trip. It was so nice having someone on the trip my own age! The boy in the picture's name is Caleb. Unfortunately he only came one day, but in that day, Rebekah went through the gospel by drawing pictures. First, with a cross, then he drew Jesus on the cross, and ending with what heaven looked like. His parents don't take him to church and he doesn't have a Bible, but I said that he was interested. We gave him a Bible and highlighted some key passages for him to read. I pray that that seed would bear some fruit.

This kid was one of the most energetic and entertaining of them all! When Mrs. Tricia asked if anyone knew why we would come all the way to Alabama to North Caroline to be with them, he responded, "You came to play with us!" He also told us he had a pet friend named Rudy, a dinosaur, who was going to eat us so we had to run! He would also tell us when we weren't pretending correctly! 

Mrs. Tricia gave the lesson everyday. Natalie 's (a little girl at the day care) mom told us that her daughter came home asking if what we said about God was true and where it was found in the Bible. Thank God that she comes from a Christian home with a mom who can help develop her understanding of our Lord and Savior.
As an easy way to remember how to become a Christian, we brought these ABC building blocks. A-Admit to God you are a sinner. Repent and turn from your sins. B-Believe that Jesus is God's son and He came into the world to save his children. C-Confess your faith in Jesus, as your Savior and your God and choose to live your life for him forevermore! We also had a rap that went along with it!

This little girl's name is Jaelyn. Day one I was told that she has a speech impediment and doesn't talk to anyone but her mom. I can't imagine how frustrating it would be to not be able to communicate with your words, but she could clearly demonstrate exactly what she was thinking. It was incredible! She was so sweet and had a big heart.

Drayton was one of my favorites. He acted like a punk when we first got there (probably because he was one of the oldest) but quickly warmed up. His rarely sees his mom, occasionally sees his dad, has a 2 month old brother he has never met, a 5 year old sister he sees on occasion, and lives with his grandparents. We were able to talk about someone who would never leave us no matter what and about the forgiveness He shows us, which we are able to show to others.

We made jean pillow cases as a craft one day.

One day for snacks we made lemonade--God will make everything that is bitter, sweet!

The youngsters on the trip!

On our afternoon off, we visted Mingo Falls.