NOW its a mission trip!

Posted by Kaylee K on Tuesday, September 20, 2011 Under: Italy
I have to admit that as we were working with our trip guide, Paul, to put together the details of the upcoming Italy trip I've struggled with the idea of taking a vision trip (vs. a mission trip) and wondered if we would truly get to serve and if we would even have time to really see what God was up to with refugees in Italy. We have plans to meet with at least 4 ministries and one government program in the course of 7 days. This seemed like a lot of intellectual time and my heart was craving serving time and God time. Don't get me wrong, we trust that God will be in all of this and the conversations we will have will be so important. Even if we are just to sit with ministry leaders to learn from them and encourage them, we know there is tremendous value in that. But, I also desire some "mission work".

In our conversation with Paul yesterday, things came up that might discourage some but to me pose an amazing opportunity for the mission part of this vision trip... Paul shared that he has talked with all of the ministries we will meet with and they are all happy to meet with us. However, but some are not really forthcoming with establishing solid plans. We know the approximate time frames and kind of the locations, but the details are still real loose. Yay!

The reason I embrace this is that it leaves so much time and space for God to work, and it forces us to depend on the Holy Spirit to lead. For example, one of the ministries says they'll arrange lodging for us in Sicily but didn't say where. Instead they said that we could call when we arrived in the area.

We also thought the weekend would be booked with serving with that same ministry, but it turns out they won't have work for us until Monday. Paul suggested that we use the weekend time to travel the area looking for refugees. You see, refugees in Italy are homeless. So, we'll visit the train station, and perhaps parks. And we will do whatever the Lord leads us to -- maybe sit and talk, maybe purchase and hand out food, maybe pray. What better way to experience the needs than to have to discover them ourselves and discern which ones to address and how?!

My concern about our time being too full of meetings and not enough space for the Holy Spirit has totally evaporated. Now, we will likely have to lean on God to tell us how to not only find and help refugees, but find and secure lodging for ourselves. Too cool! Can't wait to see how God shows up!!

In : Italy 

Tags: vision  mission  refugees  "holy spirit" 

Blog Authors

John and Kaylee Kolditz Kaylee founded Refugee Connect in 2008. John joined the work in 2011 as we investigated the refugee situation in Europe. But our faith and cross-cultural journeys have been a work-in-progress for many years. Much of this blog reflects that. ************************************************ We met in Austin, TX, while volunteering at a serving event at Gateway Church and have been married since 2002. Marriage, parenting and ministry all require a great deal of intentionality, humility and true reliance on God for strength, wisdom, and grace. It is a journey we are grateful to be on together. Ultimately, what matters to us is building into meaningful relationships in ways that, to the best of our ability and by God's grace, demonstrate the love and hope Jesus freely offers to us all. ************************************************ We bring both business and ministry backgrounds into our current work. John started a business in his 20's and helped build several other businesses. He has also served with churches in a variety of roles including as an assistant pastor, director of community development, and missions board member. Kaylee left her marketing career to become the global missions director for our home church in Austin, TX, then founded a local refugee ministry, and became TEFL certified (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) in order to prepare for our work overseas. We have led short-term teams domestically and internationally, and served with a variety of cross-cultural ministries. In 2008, we sensed a call to build into the church in Europe, which was also around the time when God broke Kaylee’s heart for refugees. Since then, God has continued to weave together this heart for refugees, desire to serve alongside the church, and focus on His call to Europe.

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