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Serving Is More Than Volunteering

Denise Robinson shares how she learned that serving is more than completing a task:

I love going on short-term mission trips. I love to travel. I love to serve. I love meeting new people. I love new adventures.  

When asked, I jumped at the chance to go to Tijuana, Mexico to serve with Amor Ministries as youth groups spent their Spring break building houses and holding neighborhood Vacation Bible Schools. Most of my serving was behind the scenes.

One day, however, I was needed to help with the Vacation Bible School at a neighborhood park. We set up several stations: Storytime, Arts and Crafts, Music and Games. Since I don’t speak Spanish, I was assigned to the Arts and Crafts area. 

The children were covering their hand with paint and then putting their hand print on a piece of burlap. We then helped them print their name at the top and “Dios te ama” at the bottom. After all banners were completed, we began to wash the hands of each of these beautiful children. 

I was concentrating on getting every last bit of paint off of their hands when my friend Amy said, “Don’t you just love doing this? As you wash each of these beautiful hands you can pray for each of these children and their families. What a privilege!”

Her statement took my breath away. I was so busy completing my task that I almost missed one of the greatest joys of the event…looking into the eyes of these beautiful children and praying for them. I realized I was just volunteering to complete what was required. Since then, I serve differently. I recognize that completing a task is important, but relationship is most important.  

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