My journey to the Himalayas began a year and a half ago. I was at the Providence membership class and ready to jump into all the ways that I could plug in and serve. I knew my passion was to worship through song and my desire was to know and be known by this body.
At this event, there was an information table set up for the trip to Himalayas, along with all the other potential short-term mission trips for that year. At the time, my perspective on international missions had been, “That’s not for me.” I respected people who did things like go halfway across the world to serve and be beacons of truth and light; I would support them financially and pray, but never in a million years did I think that would be something God would call me to do.
The year that followed that membership class was a difficult season in my life. The Lord was working on my heart to press into the gospel and its implications on my anxiety, fear, and despair. It took a year of Him guiding my prayers and working on my heart for me to begin thinking about missions.
When the opportunity for the Himalayas trip came around again, I had all kinds of hesitations: I didn’t have the funds, I’d never been camping, backpacking, or even out of the country, and I barely knew the other members of the team. I thought, “How could someone who has so desperately wrestled with trusting God be fit to go to people who had NEVER heard the name of Jesus and plead them to do that very thing?”
I presented that very case to God in prayer. He responded, “Oh, you of little faith. Did I not use ‘the least of these’ throughout history to accomplish my purposes? Have I not displayed my might in creating the world? Who are you to give my Spirit limits?”
I clung on to Scripture where Paul is pleading for God to take a thorn out of his side, “But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.” (2 Corinthians 12:9)
And let me tell you, God did wondrous things in the Himalayas. He strengthened our team in our weariness, empowered us with His Word, and sent us by His Spirit. He called people to Himself through the work of my team and our translators, and all the glory goes to Him alone.
This trip not only fueled and stirred my affections for God and missions, but having the Providence church body commission us the Sunday before we left was a moment I will never forget. Being obedient to the call of missions embedded me even further into the heartbeat of Providence because I was a member who was sent.
Prayers surrounded us, people encouraged us and supported us, and those who heard and saw our reports were encouraged in their own faith. What a joy it is to be a part of a missional church. May we be a people who do not take it for granted and seek to obey the Great Commission in every area of our lives. The gospel is worth going forth to “Judea, Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”
Kayla Hodgin is an intern at Providence Church and has been a covenant member since August 2017. A proud graduate of Oklahoma State University, she enjoys making/drinking coffee, singing, and running. She has been told she is a 7 on the Enneagram but is convinced she is a 4.