Why do we go?
by Rachel Whaby
Why do we go? Or an even better question, how does one decide that going to different countries to help others sounds like a suitable thing to do, or better yet, profession? Why not stick with a safer, more secure, and better paying option. A question that I have been asking myself since starting missions in 2005, and continuing to have a bent toward the nations.
Two things have happened to me recently that have caused my brain to go into hyper-drive on this question of why? Why do I choose to go to “dangerous”(as one friend fearfully pointed out) places? Do I crave danger? Am I an adrenaline junkie?
The first instance, recently I was lying in bed wide awake with my brain surging through how I happened to come upon my worldview after being challenged by some friends on my political position. The best way I came up with how to communicate how I came to my worldview, was through my life experience, places I had traveled, the people I had met, and things I observed in the midst of doing that.
The second thing that caused me to stop in my tracks is when I told a friend that I was hopefully going on a trip to one of our Hear The Cry locations. After telling her the locations, she said to me, “Why don’t you just go to someplace like Italy? Do you really need to put your life in danger?” I thought, “What danger?” (There is danger walking across the street), but it was at that point I realized that so many people have the wrong idea or believe so much of the fear mongering that goes on in today’s media that they cut themselves, and their lives short of living to the fullest.
Hear The Cry does not send teams into areas where there is current civil unrest. In the midst of helping, we also need to use wisdom.
One of the biggest reasons I personally adore the nations and choose to go is, because of the desire to observe life through the eyes of another place, another culture, another worldview. Obviously, I still carry around my set of beliefs and presuppositions, but if and when I allow myself to open up to other cultures, I believe that I am able to understand the world just a wee bit better. Understanding calms fear, understanding stops hate.
As someone who loves Jesus, I believe we are called to love others in that same way. How can we best love them? I believe that is through doing our best to understand where they come from, what they believe, how they came to those beliefs, and how we can best serve them where they are at in their life.
What we do by going is, break down the walls of cultural misunderstanding, ignorance, and we learn, we humble ourselves, and we serve. We go because, we believe that people are made equal and valuable, and that when someone needs help, we go and we help them, regardless of their culture or situation.
Often times, this takes us to what the world would perceive as less desirable or even “dangerous” places. Truth is, if it is good enough for the people living there, it should be good enough for us to be willing to take time out of our lavish (yes, I know we probably don’t feel as though we have a lavish life, yet truth is, we probably are doing alright) lives to go and help.
We go because we want to love Jesus and love others. Often times loving others is through giving practical help and serving them.