written by Jocelyn Tan

Personally, this has been a mission trip where I learned the most. We learned in our devotions to always view whoever you encounter as people and not as problems. With this, it taught me to look at anyone as equals because we have the same Creator. This taught me to attempt to connect with people at a heart-to-heart level and to take more initiative in situations. There was an instance where a primary girl was crying for an unknown reason. Although she didn’t open up immediately after comforting her, I felt that it brought our friendship to a stronger level after that where she opened up to me more. I was encouraged and learned that sometimes just a little initiative from your side can make a difference, big or small.

Secondly, I learned to constantly to remember that no matter how big our problems may be, our God is always bigger. At dry times or just whenever we wanted to, we stopped whatever we were doing and prayed.

This trip impacted my relationship with God and others. To view situations from a different perspective where the material aspect is not as important as the spiritual aspect is something I can apply, especially in wherever I am serving. Moreover, I have been committing my smaller problems more frequently to God, relying on His strength rather than mine.

In the meantime, patience was a challenge especially when teaching the Standard 1 kids since their attention span was shorter. Teaching the younger kids who were at different paces at a same time was a handful. I tried to keep reminding myself to see them as people and not as problems. It was not easy when you are occupied but with God’s help, everything turned out well.

With all that mentioned, volunteering is for anyone who has the heart to volunteer. You can volunteer without the need of having any extraordinary skills. Volunteering will expand your worldview and teach you life lessons. It is a good platform to foster relationships with yourself, God and everyone else. It really is an experience you must encounter!

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