Each mission trip is a collection of stories. Yesterday, we shared Angel's story about how her family of five took an unorthodox route to come build homes in Mexico. Today, we wanted to share Eric's experience during his last Amor 3 Day with his family.
In July Angel, the kids, and I went back to Mexico for our annual “Do Unto Others Adventure.” As with last year, it was life changing. When we go to Mexico, we go with Amor Ministries - who have been building homes in the Tijuana dumps for over 30 years. One of the motto’s of Amor is “Disrupt”. I think this trip does a good job of helping to disrupt our lives.... and that is why we keep going back!
I thought I would take my time to tell you about the special disruptions and why they mean so much to me and the family. You leave the US and cross the border into Mexico. Technically you are only minutes from your home country, but you realize quickly that you are not in control.
Mexico just feels different. The minute I step into that country, my heart goes out to them. It feels very oppressive and helps me to appreciate the freedom we enjoy at home. When we arrive at camp there is no electricity, there is no running water. You make your camp on the hard desert ground. The bathrooms are seats over a large trench. The showers are open air enclosures.
You are reminded that we have it so good back home. In addition, the pastor’s wives who serve the meals and take care of the camp have some of the biggest smiles. The pastors who come to share their stories bring warmth to your soul on a cool night.
We head to the worksite in an old school bus. The roads are not paved and not well maintained. The ride is hot and very bumpy. Everyone we pass seems happy and content. You really have to ask, “How is that possible?” When we arrive at the work site, we meet the new family. A matriarch who wants an additional home for her daughter to live in. The home she has now is falling apart, yet she asks for her daughter to get the new home. We don’t have power tools, just saws and hammers.
The work is hard. We sweat in the hot July sun. I think to myself, “I don’t know when I’ve had this much fun with my family!”
Only after a hard day's work can someone take a nap on the concrete and look so happy
The kids having a good time helping with stucco
Dunavant family in front of Amor house on the last day
At the end of the day, we head back to camp. I notice something is missing...the distractions. No one can call me here. I don’t have internet access and my email doesn’t work. There is a certain joy in this.
We sit around the campfire, roast marshmallows and realize this trip isn’t long enough. We will soon be going home. These disruptions are special, but unfortunately they wear off.
When we return home, I find myself missing the disruption. I think of ways to create more disruption in my life. Typically I think we all want to find our lives following a path that feels comfortable. We’ve found that comfortable is boring. Disruption brings joy and I never want to forget that.