July 1, 2014- Anna- City Beautiful

So this is my second year on this trip. Of course I knew it would be different than last years because it’s a new group, a new year, and I came on this trip as a leader this year compared to a student last year. However, I didn’t think it would be this different.

For those, of you who don’t know, I struggle with anxiety, which can also make me a little depressed sometimes. But last year when I came on this trip, I didn’t feel any of that at all. I felt safer than ever, I couldn’t find anything to be anxious or depressed about. This year was a different story. I was faced with multiple fears of mine throughout the trip from planes, to certain insects, to sicknesses. I wasn’t sure how I was going to get through it because I didn’t have my mom or my aunt to call and I was in a completely different country. I was allowing my fears to control me but after talking with my leader I realized that I had to fight back. So I did. The mind set that I had and the trip in general just completely changed as soon as I did this. I realized what God was trying to teach me. It’s okay for me to have fears, I’m human, but I can’t keep running from them. I have to face them and conquer them and when I do the amount of joy that God will bring me is more than I could ever imagine.

Not only did I learn so much about my anxiety on this trip but I also learned a lot about how to be a leader. For those of you who don’t know, I’m a leader for the local high school House Church youth group. Sometimes it’s hard to be a leader because I have to set an example for people while still having my own faults. I learned how to better respond in challenging times and in a way that points others to Jesus.

This wasn’t an easy trip for me like it was last year. I was tested spiritually but here I am on day 14 reflecting back on the trip and I’m realizing how much God grew me in these last two weeks. I’m thankful for the struggles in my life because a lot of the times they produce more endurance in me than the easy things do. Our God is a crazy God who does wondrous things. I had a completely different purpose on this trip than I did last year and I can’t imagine having not come.

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