LONWABO NAKANI, went on her first mission trip at the tender age of 13. She is now 16 years of age and has been on 7 mission trips and has lead over a thousand people to the Lord.
The very first soul I led to Jesus was on my first mission trip and it was with Every Tribe Missions ("ETM"). Even though I was under age to go that year I am grateful for my first trip, it was at a point in my life where I needed God to become real to me. It is obvious that there is such a thing as perfect timing, it is God's timing.
It is true that God is no respecter of persons because, if He was, I would have been the last pick on His list. All God is looking for is an open vessel, somebody that wants to be used by God. I'm quite young, 16 years old to be precise but I have lived long enough to know that there is nothing more satisfying than serving God by populating His kingdom. It is exciting to know that you are bringing people hope through the eternal gift of salvation.
Earlier this year on my 6th mission trip, we came across a lady who was reluctant at first to let us in her home. She did not believe that God cares about her and with much persistence we ministered to her and tears were rolling down her cheeks, as she was being touched by the Holy Spirit. One of the prayer requests were that she receives her ID book as it was pending for a long time. What makes this story remarkable is that we came across the same lady the next day on the street, she testified that she received a phone call after we have left to pick up her ID book. A few months later on my 7th trip, whilst ministering in town the same lady approached me and just started testifying about the goodness of God and saying that God has been with her ever since.
At first I did not recognize the lady, but I finally realized who she was and that was only one of the many testimonies.
I have learnt so much on all these mission trips - things that my school textbooks would never be able to teach me. ETM have taught me to be persistent and to love, to see people the way God sees them. Missions have also taught me to 'die to self' because regardless of who you are, your flesh is often moved by the circumstances you see before you. Many of the people we minister to live insuch poverty and that is heart-breaking for me when I see kids of my age or younger not knowing where their next meal will come from. We help out where we can but there have been cases where my team and I have given away our sandwiches to the family we ministered to, but we cannot feed everyone everywhere we go but, we can give them their bread, the eternal gift.
I have learnt that man'sgreatest need is for Jesus to be for in him. For Jesus is everything,He provides for man's needs and heals all their disease.
I have learnt to be bold. On most of the mission trips that I have been on, have I been the youngest. Many times I have had to lead a team. It is not every day that a 16 year old preaches to people 3 or even more times her age. But that is the ability that the Lord has placed inside of me and that gives me so much confidence!
I encourage you to go on a mission trip at least once in your life, it is really worth your time.
Parents, why don't you consider sending you teenagers on a mission trip during the school holidays? I can testify that this is the best thing that my mother and grandmother have done for me!