The students, faculty and staff members who participated in a sports evangelism mission trip to Ukraine in June have returned, but the trip itself lives on in The Ukraine Journal, an online trip diary about the mission trip to the cities of Kiev and Zhitomir.
The Ukraine mission trip is the 12th in a series that has sent Belmont University athletes, under the leadership of Assistant Athletics Director Betty Wiseman, to countries all over the world.
Reflecting on the Ukraine trip, Wiseman wrote the following at The Ukraine Journal:
The trip and ministry is now over and we are making the transition back to our daily routines. It does not come easy. Part of me is still in the Ukraine and my life won’t ever be quite the same. I continue to process the trip, the ministry, the divine appointments, and all that happened to our team. The faces of street children and orphans fill my mind and cloud my sleep. The Ukrainian language rings in my ears. The sights and sounds of another world keep haunting me. It will take more time than usual to get beyond these two weeks of mission work.
Team members drop by the office daily to hug, remember, process, and shed more tears. They, too, are readjusting and trying to bring closure. God did a mighty work in these students’ lives, taking them out of their comfort zone and forcing them to unzip their hearts and let Jesus shine. They learned things about themselves they never knew. Their relationship with Christ took on a new and deeper intimacy. I watched as they “let go” and let God work in their lives. They gave their all, and yet, they received so much more. It was a beautiful thing to behold.
Plans are already underway for next year’s Sports Evangelism trip, to Venezuala, May 15-26, 2006, Wiseman reports. “Begin now to pray for this upcoming mission opportunity for Belmont Sports Evangelism. It takes a full year of work and planning to make these trips happen. Pray for financial support, for the missionary and his preparations, and for God’s leadership as I begin thinking about who God wants to be a member of this team.”