Recently, a group from Woodland Hills Church went on a mission trip to Cambodia. We caught up with Libby, who went on the trip, and we asked her a few questions about her time there:
Why did you decide to go on this trip?
The first time I went two years ago, I guess I just decided I was going. Something came over me, and it was one of the greatest adventures of my life. It changed me and, ever since we got back that first time, I knew I would go again. The Cambodian people have such a special place in my heart, and I can’t wait to go again. My dream would be to do long term missions in Cambodia after my son grows up.
How did this trip challenge you?
The hours and work are hard, but somehow you get through it. It is very hard to see people suffering so much. They are so thin and hungry, but their faith is still so strong. To see children suffer is very hard for me personally, but they are so amazing, kind and full of life.
Tell us about some of your experiences in Cambodia:
On my first trip two years ago, I could not figure out why I kept getting sunburns, as I was spraying myself with a lot of sunscreen. After about a week, my friend Joann needed some sunscreen, as she forgot hers. So I volunteered mine, but Joann looked at me like I was crazy. She said “this is not sunscreen; this is fungal spray.”
On this trip, I saw many of the same children from my first trip. It was awesome to see they were still safe and alive. The children actually remembered me from two years ago. I guess that showed me that, not only did they make a difference in my life, but I must have made a difference in their life as well.
What did you learn about yourself on this trip?
I learned about how much we take for granted as normal. It has been so amazing to see how much they do with so little. We live with such waste here, and we never really want for anything. My young child is much more aware of how lucky he is to never go hungry or feel unsafe. This served as a reality check; teaching me the love of God, faith and compassion. The kind people we served were so happy with so little.
I have an overwhelming desire to stay and work in Cambodia long term. I feel that the Cambodian people need the love and faith that we can share. There is something so strong in my heart for the people there that I can’t wait to return. I feel this is what life is really about: no rat race, just love and compassion for my brothers and sisters through Christ the Lord.