This weekend Wade and I had the amazing opportunity to lead some team building exercises for a 150 summer missionaries that will be deploying all over the world in just a few days with the Nehemiah Teams!  I'm not sure I am allowed to say where all they are going, but they will cross over several continents and some will be in Level 3 countries.  Level three means they are very dangerous, especially for Christians.

To prepare for their upcoming trips, the teams gathered for language classes, training, and worship.  I was only there for the training, but I learned a lot! 
The teams started by driving in two buses to the location (out in the woods at a low-ropes course). On their way, they were stopped by "Hostles" with real guns (filled with blanks, but still!) and told to get off the bus because there was a bomb. The missionaries then had to get off the buses and get as far away as they could and duck for cover.
Once they arrived at the location, they had to go through "Security" and show their passports and be searched. As one girl went through, she was asked why she had a Bible verse tucked in her name tag. It was an eye-opening way for them to prepare for closed countries and make sure they don't make those same mistakes.
The remainder of the day the missionaries went through Team Building exercises with their groups. They activity I led was a sort of grid that the teams had to cross and there were penalties for moving on without checking on the person behind you. The lesson was to remember the team on the mission field instead of only focusing on your own personal goals. It was really interesting to watch the teams try different approaches to the task. One in particular really impressed me with the way they built a foundation that allowed for each team member to cross successfully. I had chill-bumps as we debriefed afterwards.

At the lunch break, my friend Brooke @ New Hope  (who is also going to Southeast Asia for 6 months!) and I walked that team to the feeding location and on the way the "Hostles" opened fire. We couldn't see where they were but the team, who have been training for this type of situation all week, quickly told us to drop to the ground. They gathered all of the girls in the middle of a group and the men surrounded and covered us.
This may sound silly, and yes there was some laughter that definitly wouldn't have been there if it were a real situation, but it was also felt a tad real.
I was so impressed with the training the college-age students have been going through to prepare for their mission fields were they will do things like provide clean water, work in orphanages, volunteer at local universities, and run basketball tournaments. One team is even heading into the middle east.
And more than anything I felt so privileged to have the honor to facilitate the team building part of their training. I'm so not worthy.  I encourage you to keep these 150 missionaries in prayer with me throughout this summer.

"We always thank God for all of you and continually mention you in our prayers. We remember before our God and Father your work produced by faith, your labor prompted by love, and your endurance inspired by hope in our Lord Jesus Christ"
1 Thessalonians 1:2-3

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