I took a small group of youth to help out one of our senior adult ladies today. We did some yard work, dug a few fence posts and put up a ramshackle fence. Oh yeah we even put a couple of 7th grade girls up on the roof to do some painting.
It wasn’t much of a thing, just a couple of hours, enough to need a shower, but not much hard labor by any means. Not a whole bunch of people came either (there were just six of us, 4 girls, 1 boy and me) and honestly I didn’t plan enough time to get the work done with those few people. But it was one of the biggest successes of our youth ministry in a long time, at least it felt that way to me.
I forget from time to time how powerful serving together can be. It has a way of helping people to form new bonds and to break down walls. It helps to open up conversation and create new relationships. Serving others is so fundamental to being who God created us to be so I can’t understand how I often forget important it is for students to serve together. It changes us, changes our focus, and changes our group.
For a few years we were a larger youth group and to do any sort of service I needed to have multiple chaperones and multiple weeks worth of planning. Who we are now is a smaller, but much more flexible group of students. I am very excited at the possibility of more “micro” mission trips like this. I think they can go a long way towards re-energizing our group.