Many people consider Christmas their favorite holiday. The decorations, presents, and all around good cheer really do make this season ‘the most wonderful time of the year’. In all the excitement, however, we often forget the true purpose of the celebration; the birth of our saviour, Jesus Christ. Last Christmas, six students from Blue Mountain College honored the true meaning of Christmas when they decided to spend the holiday spreading His word to the nations by participating in the Christmas in China mission trip.
Grace Durbin, Hope Howard, Mary Kate King, Mark Robbins, Sarah Ward, and Allie Vance were all member of the Christmas in China Missions team. Mark Robbins says in an interview that the decision to go to China was an easy one.
“The timing for this trip was perfect… My job does not require me to work during Christmas break which made it easy for me to go. Before this opportunity, I had never looked into going to China.”
The preparation seems to have been a little harder, as Mark explains that he was consistently praying for the people the team would be meeting and working extra hours to raise funds for the trip. Once the team arrived in China though, not even the language barrier could stop them- “The Chinese teach English in their schools so most students spoke enough English to make it through a basic conversation.”
Mark also mentioned how the team would get conversations started; with Christmas!
“We used Christmas as a way to stimulate conversations. They wanted to know what Christmas was about which gave us a perfect opportunity to share [the gospel] with them. They listened attentively. Many people had never heard before so this was all new to them.”
Finally, Mark gave some advice to any students who are considering mission trips:
“Work hard before you go so you will be better financially prepared. The financial cost is heavy so be working a job and saving your money. Stay in prayer so you will be in tune with what God would have you do and where he would have you go.”
These six young people should be applauded for their kindness, selflessness, and determination to serve the Lord. By reaching out and touching the lives of others, they have shown us what Christmas is truly about.