I Am So Glad That I Said “Yes”

by Nicole Ding

If you were to ask me to summarise my mission trip experience in one word – it would be fulfilling/purposeful. I was recently blessed with the opportunity to travel to Kampung Runchang to teach the Orang Asli there about our God and to spread His Word. What I experienced there was eye-opening and humbling for me and I wish to share what I learnt from it.

In all honesty, I was a little hesitant when my parents first asked me if I wanted to join them on this mission trip as it has been a while since I’ve been to one and I often struggle with being out of my comfort zone. But I decided to say “Yes” as I wanted to do something that was pleasing to God. So, I went with an open mind. I remember the night before we entered the kampung, we gathered as a team, worshipping and praying for everything planned to run smoothly. I also remembered being incredibly nervous yet with a sense of excitement about meeting the people there to the point where I wasn’t able to sleep. However, deep down I knew they were going to be friendly and approachable, and I was right!

As soon as we arrived there the next morning, we were greeted by warm smiles and welcoming expressions. We started off by going around the room introducing ourselves individually, as well as getting to know the kids and the adults. Worship was next and I found myself naturally being in front of all the kids leading them in dance, along with people from the church, even though I wasn’t familiar with it myself. At first, I recalled being super nervous that I couldn’t even keep eye contact with any of the kids but I soon realised their faces were plastered with nothing but joy and contentment. I was then encouraged to look beyond myself and worship God with an open heart. I was reminded that this genuine heart of worship was the attitude I should have.

Throughout my time there, I developed a close friendship with three of the kids and had planned to make them friendship bracelets as gifts before I left. So, I went to make them in the car while they were having one of their activities. What happened next was the highlight of the trip for me. During lunchtime when homemade burgers were served, the three girls spotted me in the car making the bracelets. They were so excited and patiently waited beside me while I made the bracelets for them. Suddenly, more kids started to peak in out of curiosity and at the end of the day, I ended up doing more than what I had planned to do but their faces and reactions were worth more than I could ask for. What touched me was the fact that all of them were standing beside me the entire time as we conversed about our lives and why I was here on this mission trip. We learned so much about each other and it surprised me how our God could bring people from two different places together and chat as if we’ve known each other for years.

Selling like hot cakes: Bracelet making by yours truly with little fans looking on

Looking back on this mission trip, I am so glad that I said “Yes” to joining my parents and the team from church. It was undoubtedly an unforgettable experience for me as I watched how God’s presence through us brought much joy. I was also amazed at how genuine the people were and how I learnt from them to let go of worldly desires in order to be happy in life.

If you feel called to serve God, a mission trip could be the perfect way to answer that call. I’m also really thankful for the team I went with as they guided me throughout the trip and reminded me that if things don’t go according to OUR plans, not to be discouraged but to trust in God and rely on His plan and timing.

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