Mission Trips: How Serving Others Can Change You

I have always loved my sister.

As the older half of our sister pair, I have always felt some responsibility for looking over her. Because of this veritable lifetime of keeping her within my line of sight, I was a bit worried – okay, more than worried – when she said she wanted to go on a mission trip to South America. Though I shared her religious convictions, I was worried that she would face dangers that I wasn’t ready for her to tackle. Unable to dissuade her, however, I insisted she get a mission trip insurance policy and allowed her to head off on the adventure she was eager to tackle. Upon her return, I found her changed in ways I could have never imagined. My trepidatious little sister was replaced with a mature woman with new-found self-confidence and understanding.


My sister had always seemed to me to be a child, even as she turned 18 and I knew that legally she was an adult. Perhaps it was because I coddled her so severely and never allowed her to be the adult she could be. Whatever the reason, my sister’s mission trip provided just the opportunity she needed to break out of her shell of childishness. From the moment she stepped off the plane after her trip I could feel her new-found maturity. She had left a little girl and returned a woman. The difference was both palpable and amazing.


I have, myself, never ventured out of the borders of the United States, so I would never have referred to myself as worldly. My sister was much like me, ignorant of other cultures. In the days that followed my sister’s return from South America I found that she was no longer quite as naive. Instead, she was well-versed in the cultures and ideas of the places she had visited and could speak about them in an animated and informed fashion. I now find myself envying her ability to do this and eager to attend a mission trip myself to gain this life experience.


Though my sister was always giving, her mission trip increased her selflessness exponentially. Now she seems more in tune with the needs of others. I feel like she would give everything she has to help another, something that I am thrilled to see as I want her to be a giving, Christian person. I can say with certainty that it was her experiences while on her mission trip that made her more altruistic and made her even more devoted and dedicated to improving the lives of others.

The mission trip that I was so eager to prevent my sister from taking–when she first mentioned it to me–turned out to be a wonderful adventure. I now appreciate the changes I see in my sister and am thrilled that I didn’t allow my desire for her safety to prevent her experiencing this wonderful adventure–it changed her life and the lives of those to whom she was able to spread her message of God’s love.

About the author: Danielle, who blogs on behalf of Sears and other prestigious brands, enjoys entertaining and socializing as well as maintaining a healthy lifestyle. She has a weakness for new running socks and old family recipes.

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