AIM Newsletter | Surfing, Perseverance and Wyclef

In this month’s newsletter:

•    Thoughts from Our Director
•    Feature Story
•    Upcoming Trips

•    Field Stories

:: Surfing the Tension Between Rest & Ministry | Seth Barnes

People talk about finding balance in life. I’m not sure what that looks like. It conjures up an image of a tightrope walker carefully moving across a wire.
My life doesn’t feel like that. My life feels more like a wave that I’m surfing that curls behind me.

I can’t see it, but it’s carrying me forward and often feels out of control. It might be huge and crash down on me at any moment. And if it does, I’ll gulp great mouthfuls of salt water while I try to come up for air. But when I get my head above water, I’ll live to surf another wave.
The first passage of Scripture my eyes fell on one jetlagged morning strummed chords inside me that had been silent too long. Jesus said, “Come with me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest.” (Mark 6:30)…

(click to continue reading)

:: There Isn’t Always a Happy Ending, But That Doesn’t Stop Me | Stephanie Tyrna

Stephanie TyrnaStephanie Tyrna went on the World Race in January 2009 and she hasn’t stopped moving since.

It had been two months she returned to the U.S. from the World Race when she went to the Dominican Republic and Haiti – the first countries of her Race -to respond to the earthquake.  She went back to Haiti for a couple more months.

Currently in Hawaii, Stephanie’s now preparing to return to another country from her World Race – Cambodia.  She’s leading three other young women to establish an AIM base and their ministry will focus on fighting human trafficking, particularly for the purposes of sexual exploitation.

They’ll reach out to women forced into prostitution in the bars, and build relationships with them.  The team is also partnering with another organization that provides counseling and training to survivors of sex trafficking.

Stephanie tells us about one such woman she and her teammates met while in southeast Asia during her Race:

Three girls on my team went down a street of open bars and met Joy (name has been changed).  They would visit her each night and as they spent more time with her, she started to open up.

She revealed to them that she would be leaving that Friday to go to another country.  She said that her boss was working something out for her to go to another country for her job.

We instantly knew what this meant.  Here before our very eyes, this lady was about to be trafficked.  Without making a scene or letting anyone at that bar know what we now know, we casually invited her to check out the SHE ministry [an organization that reaches out to at-risk youth and women forced into the commercial sex trade].

With desperation in her eyes, she agreed to come the next day …

Read more about Joy’s story and find out how you can partner with Stephanie as she heads to Cambodia next month to reach more people like Joy.

:: Upcoming Trips | Real Life & World Race

Real Life | Adventures in MissionsThrough our Real Life program, we send out college-aged men and women with a heart for missions out onto the field to partner with local missionaries, churches, and ministries and share their faith in adventurous and exciting ways.

  • We’re still accepting applications for Spring semester trips to India, Kenya, Nicaragua, Southeast Asia and Uganda, leaving in January.
  • Summer trips to Peru, Guatemala, Haiti, Hong Kong, India, Kenya, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Thailand, Uganda, and even an expedition through East Africa and exposure to the World Race leave in June.

Click here to learn more

The World Race | Adventures in MissionsOn the World Race, participants journey through 11 countries in 11 months, living out of a backpack, on a limited budget and on faith in order to love the least of these alongside established missionaries and ministries.


:: Field Stories

Gwapa Ka
| Cora Healey

Cora went to the Philippines on an Ambassadors (our program for high school students) trip this summer; one day, she met a little girl named Mariel:

… I pointed in the general direction of her face and said, “Gwapa ka,” which in Cebuano means, “You are beautiful.”  She turned and asked Ruben, “My hair is beautiful?” and I asked Ruben to tell her “No, everything” and I motioned with my hands to her entire face so she would understand.

As soon as Ruben translated for me, Mariel looked back at me, smiled shyly, and let out a little laugh.  Ruben turned to me after this exchange and said, “That is probably the first time anyone has ever told her she is beautiful.”

Read more of her story…

Haiti: Wyclef Jean and the Holy Spirit
| Brandon Headrick

Wyclef Jean and the Holy SpiritBrandon was part of an Ambassadors team that served in Haiti.  Here’s what happened at the tail of their trip:

As our team entered the door to Toussaint L’Ouverture International Airport, little did we know that a celebrity was in our midst.  As I pushed forward to the security check point, I glanced to my left and realized an entourage was approaching.  I really didn’t think much of the situation until the crowd became a part of my personal space… and much to my surprise Wyclef Jean was in my personal space.

Read more of his celebrity encounter and most importantly, what he learned of the Holy Spirit.

I Have a Lot to Learn
| John Carey

Even when we offer ourselves for the Lord’s service with the best of intentions, we sometimes get in God’s way.  John is on a Real Life trip in Brazil; it’s only been a couple weeks and he’s already learning a great deal about expectations of himself and of God:

I struggle so much with expectations, because I get my ideas about what God is going to have in store, and then when they aren’t met, I think everything is all wrong.

I thought for sure we would be living out in the bush somewhere, eating who knows what, sharing the gospel with people who had never heard of Jesus, and smelling like something that’s been dead for quite some time.  We would definitely be in direct relationship with the poor everyday, and meeting their needs in whatever ways we could.

This is not the case though.  We will be doing manual labor everyday for the next 2 months, so our work will be for people we might never meet, and for a time that isn’t right now.

Read more of what John’s hearing from God as he serves for the remainder of the semester.

The Adventures Begins
| Katie Westcott

Katie has been in India for a couple weeks on a Real Life trip.  She had spent a part of training beforehand in Atlanta; here’s a glimpse of how they spent the night in the city.

Carl’s Story: Life in the Tent Cities
| Katie Rowland

Carl Lafontant works with AIM in Haiti as an interpreter.  He shares his thoughts on rebuilding Haiti and what life is like in the tent cities.

Before the fiscal year ends this Thursday, September 30th, help us finish the race strong.

More and more people are going deeper in their relationship with Christ through their participation in AIM mission trips. Lives are being transformed. Come, be a part of it!
View a list of AIM mission trips…