ROCKPORT: A Place of Divine Appointment and Small Miracles
By Megan Hardy | July 23, 2019
This summer, I went on my fifth youth mission trip with St. Philip’s. I’ve been to Eureka Springs, AR two times, Baton Rouge, LA once, and now Rockport, TX twice. From going on so many trips, I’ve definitely picked up a few things. I know how to use a circular saw, how to paint various things, and how to tile a floor. I know probably most of the kids talk about what we completed while on mission, as did I once I got home. But there are so many other things that happen on mission that the parents and supporters back home don’t see.
Like the working together that happens between young people of various ages, and the relationships formed and strengthened. On mission, things are just different. I didn’t go to lots of youth group meetings this year, frankly because I felt uncomfortable going there without having a solid, close-knit group there. But this changes while on mission. I got to reach out to a lot of the younger kids and be a mentor to the middle schoolers. I formed tight bonds between people that before I never would’ve considered my friends. It’s honestly amazing to see how going somewhere and working hard has a way of bringing people together. Maybe it’s the fact that you share a bedroom and bathroom with half of the youth group, or maybe it’s what I like to call “divine appointment”.
You see, with such a diverse group of people, I would never call it a coincidence that myself or any other members of the team ended up in Rockport. I’m an Allen High School kid that goes to a church right across from Frisco High. I have friends that go on mission because they were invited by someone else. There were lots of younger kids that went just because they wanted to see what it was all about. Our youth group isn’t only from one school, town, or age group. Stepping back to look at everyone, you’d probably see that we are more different than the same.
But being on mission and being a Christian has never been about fitting in or satisfying some worldly image or idea. This mission is about standing out for the glory of Christ. This mission is about being His hands and feet by serving a broken world. It’s about fellowship, whether it’s through worksites, small groups, or even volleyball games. I know many show up for our mission trip year after year because their friends go, and it’s fun to spend time with the people you like. And I know plenty don’t necessarily use the trip as a way to connect with God. However, God shows up anyway and is constantly moving whether we take the time to notice it or not. The Holy Spirit was active in First Baptist Rockport when students and adults were standing up and sharing what baggage they’d been holding on to. The Lord was present at the worksite, giving us all the strength to finish what we set out to do. God was there as new friendships were made and cemented.
It’s way too easy to give ourselves the credit for what happens on mission, but all glory and praise belongs to Christ. It was God that sent us all to Rockport. It was God that opened up our hearts to one another. It was God that reminds us to serve and care for those in need. After going on five mission trips, I’ve seen that each year always has something special; some small miracle. There’s a miracle in finishing a ramp, painting a house, a cool breeze, and a hug from a youth leader. Miracles are found in a shady spot, finishing drywall, and letting go of baggage at the cross. Experiencing these miracles illustrates how God touches lives while on mission. He touched my life five years ago in Eureka Springs, Arkansas, and He has been present every day since then. All praise to God always and forever.
“For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do good things he planned for us long ago.” Ephesians 2:10
Megan Hardy is an incoming Junior at Allen High School.