The return to mission trips

It’s been several years since I’ve been on a mission trip. We had kids, and getting away with little ones is tough. I’ve been meaning to get back to it for a while, but not able to make it work. This year, my job gave all of us an extra week of vacation, and I knew what I’d use it for.

I went with my church to rural West Virginia for relief work after the big flood from last year. The flood was a year before, but there were still folks in need of help. As they told us, those with means had all fixed their homes, so the only folks still suffering are those without.

The first day was rainy, so we couldn’t go to our planned sites. Instead we worked in a church basement cleaning out, putting up insulation, and laying cinder blocks.

The rest of the trip I worked at a house that had been hit hard by the flood. We finished a porch that had a wheelchair lift, including adding a roof to it. We replaced a large portion of the tin roof on the house, as it was leaking badly. And we added support jacks under part of the house that had pulled away from the rest of the house in the flood.

Porch building


Jacked up

For any Glen Mar folks (or other Marylanders who’d like to go with us) considering a mission trip, this one is really great. I’m used to having the most construction experience on my crew, but this trip was full of experts. We were like a finely oiled machine.

After the work day, we made sure to see a bit of our surroundings. We saw the Summersville Dam and the Summersville Lake.

Summersville Lake

Though I was most excited that it was near Fat Eddie’s where we could get ice cream. This is a large dip cone, and it was delicious (though it took so long to eat that some of my compatriots were getting tired of waiting on me so we could get going).

Fat Eddie's

Another day, we went to see the New River Gorge Bridge, the longest single-span bridge in the world up until a few years ago.

New River Gorge Bridge

Being in West Virginia working to help those in need alongside my fellow believers has reawakened a part of me. It's the most direct feeling of being God's hands and feet I've experienced. I connect with God in a lot of ways, but there's nothing that's anything like a mission trip. I'm sorry it's taken me so long to get back on a trip, and I look forward to another trip soon.

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