Recently, I had the opportunity to participate in a short-term mission trip to Kӧln, Germany. From the moment we arrived we were embraced by members of Die Brϋcke, the local church. Seeing their love for each other and their excitement for our trip was a constant encouragement throughout our time there.
Our primary focus was outreach on the University of Kӧln campus. We spent our campus days walking in pairs, praying, taking spiritual surveys, and sharing the gospel with anyone who would listen. Hannah and I shared the gospel with one student whose initial response was hope and amazement. When we asked if she wanted to receive the gift of salvation, she said, “If this is true, who wouldn’t?” Again and again, the words of rejection we heard were accompanied by hesitant hope at our message.
The intentionality and enthusiasm that accompany short-term trips spur the members on to rapid growth, something I definitely saw in my life during my time in Germany. I found a confidence and joy in sharing the gospel that I had never before known. This motivational thought stayed with me: we came all the way from Texas to share the truth about Jesus, so we need to share at every opportunity!
After one intense gospel conversation, we left the young man sitting on the steps reading the Gospel of John. Afterwards, I felt a spiritual heaviness from the struggle of that moment that was only lifted after we began to pray for him. That moment reminded me that God’s truth is actively working, even when we are gone. I am so thankful for the friends and experiences I have gained from these two weeks, as well as the opportunity to see God’s plan unfolding in the lives of so many people.