It’s tough to put into words how I’m feeling about my trip… but I’m going to try.
So many of us sign up for mission trips hoping to have this life changing experience. We hope to leave for our trip as one person and come back as another. We hope to have a huge epiphany while we’re away, to have a new outlook on life when we return. To see so much, to do so much and then to change so much.
I came back Sunday evening as the same Jenn. I didn’t have a huge epiphany while I was away. I didn’t change substantially. I came back exhausted from two long days of traveling with over 20 hours in the sky. I spent the following few days, and still am, fighting off sickness, jet lag, dehydration, dizziness and exhaustion. I spent the past two days sleeping 20 hours per day. I had to call in sick to work last night because I was dizzy and couldn’t stop sleeping.
I’m awake now, feeling a bit better physically, but sad emotionally. My time in Uganda has come and gone. I may not have morphed into this new person, but what occurred in Uganda was something far greater than change. What occurred was one huge answer to prayer.
Prior to leaving I’d prayed about somehow being reconnected. I’d been feeling so down. Not depressed, but just… down. And not all of the time… just sometimes. My church is really, really big and without a small group, it can feel like you get lost in a sea of other Christians.
I show up many Sundays and leave an hour later and then go on with my week. I don’t have too many Christian friends here anymore and the ones I do, I see so infrequent it’s like I don’t have any. I had been yearning for a greater connection. I’d also been looking for a purpose with my nursing career. I often feel that sometimes work is just that: work. I wanted to feel a greater connection to my career choice.
And finally- I wanted to feel closer to God. It’s hard not to get wrapped up in the day to day life and when things are going well, its easy to push God aside. Throw in not having a close knit community of fellow Christians to keep you on track and connected and just like that — Christianity in your life fades away slowly.
I needed this trip for so many reasons. And I hoped and prayed for this trip. God knows the heart. This trip was a huge answered prayer for me. Not only did I get to see so much and do so much and have an incredible time using my nursing skills to help others, but I met amazing people, thrived in a team setting and left feeling both reconnected to my career choice, other Christians, and Jesus.
Most surprisingly, I was reminded that my entire life does not need to revolve around me being outside. In fact, I don’t want it to. While I love the outdoors and hiking and goal chasing– I really needed to focus on something else for a while. Prepping for Uganda and then Uganda and this time afterwards has been very eye opening for me.
I’m happy to be home and happy to move forward in my life. I feel rejuvenated, refocused and excited for whats to come. I am looking forward to getting involved in some local ministries here stateside and looking forward to finding a small group and looking forward to getting more involved with my church. And, I already can’t wait for next years trip back to Musana. In another post I’ll tell you all about Musana. What a God given gift Musana is. This organization is changing SO MANY LIVES! It truly is incredible so witness first hand the work they’re doing and meet some of the people this organization has helped.
Stay tuned 🔆