When I rode to Carowinds with Pastor’s daughter last weekend, we talked for awhile about the missions trips she had been on. She worked with an outfit whose name I cannot remember, but they put together work teams to go to different countries. The teens do actual building while they are on their missions trips. She’s been to Scotland and France, and has wonderful memories of both people and places. She did tell me that boot camp, as the initial training is called, was not particularly fun, though. Of course, I think she was probably right. Living in a tent in Florida in the middle of the summer is just NOT my idea of a good time, but she says its worth it, so I’ll have to believe her. She said that in order to save money, the kids actually haul most of their food with them on their flights! They take very few things with them in order to have room left in their luggage to do this.
I don’t know how the travel was arranged for them, but it was Carrie’s trips that came to mind when I saw Golden Rule Travel today. They specialize in missions flights and adoption travel. Of course, you know the Golden Rule, “do unto others as you would have them do unto you”, but you might not recognize the reference to going the second mile. In New Testament times, any Roman soldier could command a Jew to walk with him for one mile, carrying his burdens. Jesus told the people that if they were compelled to walk one mile, to walk with the soldier for two. I imagine it wasn’t a popular speech, since it also included the gems about turning the other cheek, and giving up a cloak as well as a coat. It’s from the Sermon on the Mount, found in Matthew 5. The thing about missions travel is that missionaries are not usually paid, not in the sense most people think of, collecting a weekly check. They usually have to raise the funds they need to get to their destination and support themselves while they are there, and the travel is usually the largest part of the financial burden. When Golden Rule Travel says they are going the second mile, they mean they aren’t just finding you a good deal, they are finding you the very best deal. They are helping you spend God’s money wisely. And then they are standing by to make sure your travel goes off as smoothly as possible, with 24/7 emergency service. I’ve read the testimonials on the site, and I was pretty impressed. I think you will be, too.