by Jocelyn Reyes (aka: Lola)
When I first arrived in the Philippines, I couldn’t believe the sight (the neighborhood/region of where we were staying). The homes and conditions that the local people who were affected by the ty phoon was unimaginable.
When I went out, I started to hear their stories. Some of the sights and heard information is the kinds that you only find in movies. These people weren’t “giver-uppers”. They are survivors!
Throughout the time of hearing and seeing what they went through or what they are going through, it was honestly heartbreaking. But, the strength that these people had was also truly remarkable. Wherever they saw us, they would smile. That smile just symbolized how they haven’t given up. It almost contradicted the awful background (homes, etc) and a smile glowed.
The main message I get was that you have to keep moving forward. This typhoon happened almost 8 months ago you can see the re-building and signs saying “Dont give up!” It was so powerful to see the continuation of lives. I will never forget this experience. The people have been given a special place in my heart.
Q= What was one way you grew closer to God on this trip?
Lola: My faith grew
Q= What would you say to someone who is thinking about going on their first mission trip? Why should they go?
Lola: Definitely go! Someone once told me that when you go, you find that “ah-ha”/discovering why you were called by God to be there and I found mine.