This is the second post from the team of 9 Brook Hills members who just returned home from Northeast India after serving for almost 2 weeks with our ministry partner NeverThirst. Read about the experiences they had while teaching and engaging unreached peoples through a church based health and sanitation program.

From Warren Beason, team leader.

Team: Rod Anderson, Jessica Baggett, Warren Beason, Tommy House, Jonathan and Andrea Maddox, Tom McCoy, Virginia Ramsey, Catherine White

I think many times we have the misconception that mission trips are just an opportunity to awkwardly hand out tracts or to build something in an impoverished area. I enjoyed this trip because it really highlighted a healthy and productive way that we can benefit our brothers and sisters around the world as they seek to advance the Gospel in their culture. They are the most effective ones to share the Gospel in their culture, but can be immensely aided by our resources and availability. On this trip we were able to directly share stories from the Bible, present the Gospel and see souls come to Christ in areas where the church was already engaged and growing. That was awesome! On the other hand, we were also able to use teaching on sanitation and hygiene to open the door for the local church to engage Hindu and Muslim villages that had previously been totally resistant to their help…much less the Gospel. In those instances, our presence, in a way that our money and resources could not, is what God used to break down the barriers for the local church. The local church will be the ones that are able to present the Gospel and disciple new believers (as it should be), but God used his global body (i.e. us) to play a role in that process. I was really thankful for us to be a link in that chain.

I was also very thankful for a team that was genuinely there to serve. Not only were they there to serve, but they were there to serve in the ways directed by the local church (not necessarily the ways we had planned). I was so encouraged by our team’s humility and flexibility. Unfortunately, many times we go with our agenda and can be disappointed (i.e. hurt pride) when we don’t get to do the things we prepared to do. However, our team did an excellent job of truly serving and being more concerned with what furthered the mission best, not what made us feel best.

Our field partner, Neverthirst, and in particular, Andrew, Roshni, Ashish and Johnna were awesome! They are daily working hard to advance the Gospel in some of the toughest places on earth. They deserve our encouragement, admiration and desperate prayer. God is using them in a mighty way.

Lastly, something I thought was funny and encouraging for Brook Hills…we were in a very remote city in Northeast India. Many have referred to this place as the “graveyard of missions”. As we sat at dinner in the ground floor of our hotel, 4 Americans walked in. These are the first foreigners we’ve seen in this area. Naturally, we introduce ourselves. It turns out, one is the International Mission Board (IMB) leader for the area and the other 3 are from a church in Louisville, KY. The IMB missionary jokingly laments…”You guys are totally blowing this for me. I told these guys we were going to one of the most remote, unreached places on earth. And, of course, who do we run into??? Brook Hills!” Ha!!! I’d love for that to be our continuing legacy!