Goodbye Alaska, Hello Mission

This morning dawned all too soon. After devotions, packing took full swing. As soon as everyone finished with their personal belongings, we ate our last breakfast in the gym: leftovers. Then we gathered around as Ms. Alyssa shared one last worship with us. She talked about how even though we will soon leave Alaska and mission trip will be over, we are still ambassadors for God—missionaries to everyone we come in contact with.

After worship we set to giving the facilities a thorough cleaning. The bath house, bathrooms, kitchen, gym, entryway, and sleeping areas needed to be vacuumed, swept, mopped, and scrubbed. Before long, Pastor Todd and a few church members arrived with two vehicles and a trailer to haul our luggage to the airport. Soon, we were on our way.

Once everyone filtered through security, we settled down in the terminal to await our plane’s arrival. We had about three hours, so some of us decided to go exploring while others ate their lunches or watched the planes come and go. Steve, a man we met at the Merrills in Talkeetna, also had a flight out this afternoon, so we got to visit with him more as well. Eventually, our plane arrived, and we were on our way to Seattle where we would transfer to a connecting flight to Sacramento. Since we only had a thirty-minute layover in Seattle, we had to hurry to catch our next flight, which was in a terminal across the airport. Fortunately, we all made it in time.

Throughout our day, we had several opportunities to put Ms. Alyssa’s morning worship challenge to practice. We passed out many GLOW tracts, but one instance in particular stands out.

Once we had arrived in the Sacramento airport, we all gathered in the baggage claim area. Pulling out a bag of baby carrots leftover from lunch, Karolina called out, “Does anybody want a carrot?” An unfamiliar female voice replied, “I want one!” Surprised, Karolina looked up and saw a lady coming towards her. The lady was very appreciative as Karolina handed her the carrots. “Thank you so much!” she exclaimed, then continued on her way. When Karolina returned to our group, she remembered about GLOW. Hastily obtaining one from Juhye, she ran back to the lady and gave it to her. The lady thanked her again and gave her a hug. Turning the tract over, she noticed the contact information and asked, “Is this your phone number?” When Karolina told her it wasn’t, she asked for Karolina’s number, adding, “If we’re going to make a difference, we need to do it together.” Karolina happily gave the lady her Weimar e-mail address. As she wrote it down, the lady exclaimed, “Oh! Are you from Weimar?” She knew about Weimar and was happy to meet someone from there. Karolina expects to hear from her soon, and we are looking forward to see what God will do in this seeker’s life.

While we are eager to get back home, see our families again, and get a good long rest, we will definitely miss Alaska. We will never forget the beauty of its mountains and the hospitality of its people. But, by God’s grace, we will not cease to be missionaries. The people of California and every other place we go need to see the love of God just as surely as those of Alaska.

–Nadia Hasse

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