It is hard to believe we spent a whole week in the Big Apple. Just like last year time just flew by and before we knew it, we were back in Morgantown. On the ride back with Skye, Katy, Matt, Mandy, and myself we spent the durations of the trip "debrieffing" and sharing our experiences with each other and Skye's parents(I am sure this will make you proud Rick). I am looking forward to telling my parents all about the trip. Also, I think God has used the 'trekking' experience to make me more bold and relient on God so I am excited to use these gifts in God's ministry for my life.
I did not realize how much the trip to NYC effected me until I went to chuch yesturday. I was a little tired anyway, but as soon as the first person asked me all of the emotions that I experienced this past week hit me like a ton of bricks. I was so overwhelmed that I had to find a solitary place to reflect and thank God for the wonderful experiences in NYC. Afterwords my emotions took so much energy out of me that I was not even able to speak right...actually I am still having trouble today. God has shown me a lot last week. He gave me new friends, strengthened relationships with old ones, helped me be a blessing to someone who at the same time blessed me, and is continually teaching me things everyday. While in NY I had this fear in the church we stayed at (I will not share why), but after a lot of prayer and giving into God's power I am realizing I have nothing to fear. God has covered me with his protection, and the fear I had has been melting away a little at time everyday. I really can not express in words how much this trip meant to me or even other things I have learned. I stumble over words when trying to tell someone about it, but somehow they can sense the impact the trip has done in me. All I can say now is thank you to all who supported us in helping us make a difference in NYC. It was an unexpressionable experience that I know none of us will ever forget.
I had such an amazing experience. The sights, the friendships, and thelearning experiences will be etched in my mind for many more years tocome. I learned about compassion, patience, and brotherhood. We aren'tall that different. We must look for Christ in everyone
It's so hard to believe that the trip is over. The trip was so amazing....i'm sad it's over. I didn't even know I would be going on the trip until a couple weeks before we left. I know that this trip is exactly what God wanted me to do and i'm so happy that I fianlly heard Him and listened. Having gone last year I already had expectations of the type of work we would be doing, but as always God suprised me. At most of the agencies we worked with I ended up doing different jobs than last year......and of course learned new lessons! This trip taught me that I can be outgoing and reach out to people i've never met before. I'm amazed at how much I grew in just one week! I am so blessed to have had this wonderful experience. I made such awesome new friends and strengthened my old friendships as well. I will never forget the laughter, tears, hugs, prayers, and awesome memories I shared with everyone on the trip and everyone we encountered on our mission to spread God's LOVE !
Before I left for this trip to New York City, I just knew I was meant to go. Last year's trip was amazing, and I had a feeling that this would be the same. But I also had a strange feeling that told me that I was supposed to be in New York City over my spring break. I had such a strong sense of urgency to attend. I was excited of course, but I also knew that NYC is where God wanted me to be. If you asked me how I felt about the trip now that I am safe at home, I could tell you that my feet hurt so badly after the first two days, or that I lost a digital camera to the ocean, or that it was rainy the day we saw the Statue of Liberty...but that isn't what I would tell you. Simply put, my feet recovered, the digital camera was a small financial loss but not nearly important, and the Statue still stands for Liberty in any kind of weather; these things can be fixed and put back to normal. What I would say is that I met a man that I will never, ever forget. He has changed my life and it will never change back. I met a homeless man outside of Madison Square Gardens on March 14th. He was sitting on the ground, next to a cane, with a cast on his right arm that stretched from his palm all the way to his shoulder. He was struggling to stand up. It was quite obvious to me and the other two girls I was with that he could not get up on his own. What amazed me was that no one else was even looking his direction. NO ONE was offering to help him up, NO ONE was even side-tracking one step to help this man. I was appalled. So the three of us asked the man if he needed help, and he graciously accepted. It took all three of us to help him up, and once standing, he needed us to remain there until he could prop himself up against a wall. He was dizzy and confused. He said he had been in the hospital for 29 days after a taxi cab had hit him. He must have not been out of the hospital long, because his bracelet was still on his left wrist. We offered him one of our bag lunches. He accepted it, and in his eyes were tears. He tried to brush them away, to keep us from noticing, but they were there. I felt so much compassion for him. All three of us stood and talked to this man for a while. During the conversation, another homeless man sat nearby, and I handed him a bag lunch also. Thankfully, I handed it to him quickly because not even 5 minutes after I gave him food, the NYPD asked him to leave. They didn't ask the man with the cast to leave though. They stood within 10 feet of my group while we talked to the man with the cast. They were hovering. Our group soon had to go, Rick (our fearless leader) had requested we return by 5pm. As we left, we are pretty sure that the NYPD asked that man to move also. Mind you that this man couldn't even stand on his own, let alone walk somewhere. Also recall that March 14th was the day of all the windy weather in NYC. Although I did not learn that man's name, I do know that he's from Georgia, has a fiance of some sort, and has a wonderful heart. He opened my eyes. The rest of that day I could not share any of my feelings with anyone. I just sat silently as we all shared what we had seen that day. My fiance asked me to share, but all I could do was cry. I now am able to share, and have controlled my emotions. Over the next few days I was talking with a girl from my group. She said that when Rick had asked us to describe the homeless people we met by replacing the words "homeless man" with "Jesus", she really realised a lot. We met Jesus on March 14th. People were overlooking Jesus on March 14th. Jesus loved us on March 14th. We helped Jesus on March 14th. I spoke with Jesus. That is why I went to NYC over my spring break."