On Serving the Poor and Mission Trips

I remembered today a question asked by a friend when I expressed that I had been wanting to go on a mission to Haiti for some time now. On hearing this, he asked whether it was fair to the people being served, that we go there and help and then return in a month and leave them with no one else to carry out the work we started. At the time, I said I’d rather have them get some/any help than none at all.

Today I was thinking about this and in trying to understand the sentiment further, I tried to think of an example more close to home and practicality today. I understand his concern that we’d in a way, be leaving them hanging or giving them something good and then taking it away, perhaps?

I think of it this way though, if I see a beggar on the corner, I may give him money or some food. I would never say, ” Well, what if he gets money from me today and then tomorrow if I don’t come by this road, and there’s no one else to give him a meal? That would be unfair to him, so I won’t give him any today”. We don’t say this because we know it would sound silly, almost like an excuse even.

I understand we cannot be everywhere we are needed and all the times a need arises, but I feel we are obliged to do what we can to help, in whatever way possible and whenever possible. This can be monetarily, if you cannot donate time, or it can be in any other way possible and available to you. Maybe you can come back from mission and talk to and inspire others to go and serve as well. Our God sees our hearts and our intentions. What matters, I believe, is that we try our best and ask for his mercy to cover what we can’t. We are only human, after all, and always working towards perfection.


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