Saturday, July 18, 2015

Mission Trip to Chicago

Hello Everyone!

I've been away for awhile and it is because I have been in Chicago. I was there on a youth trip with Mars Hill. We toured the city and also served in several different ways. 

We departed on Thursday the 9th from Mobile at 6 a.m. and arrived in Chicago at 11 p.m. We stayed at Southside Christian Church and were very comfortable there. (Shout out to women's group for the excellent meals!)

On friday, our first day in Chicago, we went to Moody Bible Institute, and got a tour of the campus, which was very interesting. It is crazy how much the Institute is involved in missions. One of the highlights of that tour was listening to one of the students who majors in communication speak to us. I noticed the clarity, and I know that I could do that  someday. 

In that same day, we went downtown and got to walk the Magnificent Mile and go to Navy Pier. I went on a Ferris Wheel for the first time, and I got to pray with a girl from the trip who I have had a difficult time with spiritually in the past. For dinner we went to the well known deep dish pizza place: Giordano's. It was delish! 

Saturday we went to the Field Museum and just walked around. After lunch there everyone was basically done with the museum so we tried to go to the aquarium. It was to long of a ride so instead some of us got bikes and rode around downtown. We had so much fun that day on those bikes I wanted to repeat it again and again. 

Sunday we went to the south side of Chicago to attend Christ Bible Baptist Church. I had so much fun worshipping, and listening to the sermon and "Welcome Song." Let me explain: every time there are new people in the pews, the church sings a welcome song trying to get you to become members. It was so thrilling trying a different church, a church that is different from mine.  

Besides the sightseeing part of the trip, we got to do some amazing things as we worked along side of Sunshine Ministries. Our group had about seventeen kids in it and was split into three smaller groups. One group stayed to help with Sunshine's camp for inner city kids, another went to a church called Living Hope to help with their camp and apartments that need repair, and the last group went to help with a school and also ended up cleaning out a house that some of the interns at Sunshine stay at. I was in the second group.We worked at these places from 9am-2pm, and then regrouped at Sunshine's building. 

We then went to different "listening opportunities" until about 5:30-6pm. The "listening opportunities" were places that we went to listen to tours and stories. 

On Monday we went to a homeless shelter called Pacific Gardens Mission {PCM}. We got a tour of the shelter and afterwards, we sat down and gave our perspectives of the place. I personally was put off by how much it resembled the Battleship here in Mobile, and how the dorms looked very prison like.

Tuesday was my favorite because we made lunches and got to go downtown and talk/eat with the homeless. I met several different people and was definitely moved by the experience. There was couple who didn't ask for money, food, or for anything else but prayer. The young couple had 4 kids and were really struggling to get where they needed to go. We got to pray for them, and give them a lunch. 

Wednesday's "listening opportunity" was a tour of the neighborhood around Sunshine Ministries. It was a very interesting tour and kind of embarrassing as well, but funny none the less. So this was the last day of our trip and I was feeling a little tired. I didn't get a coffee like a should have and as soon as I got into the van I knew I would fall asleep. 

I told the girls I was sitting next to to not let me fall asleep. Well I did end up dozing off, and they did not wake me. I also was snoring! I felt really bad and the tour guide was kind of awkward when I apologized, I guess I would be too. In the end I learned that if I feel tired and I am about to do something that involves listening, I need to get a coffee... Great life lesson, huh?

We departed on Thursday from Chicago at 5 a.m. and arrived in Mobile at 7:30 p.m. The weather was like a punch in the face. As soon as I was out of the ar I started to drip with sweat! It was funny to see some of the kids who have never left Mobile react to the humidity.

I really enjoyed this trip, I have a new mindset towards the homeless, and who they are. Also I feel like I have learned to serve in a way that I didn't know how to. I was humbled through this trip and it was a blessing for me to see God worked in different peoples' lives. 

If you would like to read more blog posts on this mission trip, click here. Thanks for reading, and if you've been on a mission trip or to a camp this summer let me know in the contact tab. 

XO AnnaD