Thursday, February 17, 2011

Mission Navajo

Don’t just pretend to love others. Really love them. Hate what is wrong. Hold tightly to what is good. Love each other with genuine affection, and take delight in honoring each other. Never be lazy, but work hard and serve the Lord enthusiastically.
Romans 12: 9-12 NLT

In just a few short weeks, my children and I will travel with a team of 17 people from our church to the Navajo Reservation in the American Southwest. Wow.

2011 marks year three for our family’s participation in the trip, and we pray God uses each of us in ways that glorify Him, through sharing the gospel, encouraging, serving and loving others.

Tammy, Janelle, team leader and Navajo, Helene
at Canyon de Chelly, Navajo Reservation, AZ

So, as the time approaches, some concepts are dancing across my heart and mind.

·      Esteeming the poor
·      Sacrificial giving
·      Loving my neighbor
·      Compassion, mercy and grace
·      Defending the weak
·      Spiritual warfare
·      Gratitude and Blessings
·      Humility

As we prepare for the trip, I am watching and noticing myself, and my life. I’m considering my children, who they are and who God Almighty is building them to be.

I wonder how He will use this mission trip to invite my children closer to Him. I wonder what He will do in me. How will He use me? My kids? Our whole team? This year, what moments will draw me to tears at His work, goodness and the ways of my brothers and sisters in Christ on the team and down there? How will God spark in me love for the lost, His kind of love?

I remember. Some on the reservation live in octagon-shaped homes called hogans, often with dirt floors, by choice. The unemployment rate is 70 percent. The landscape is brushed with orange, rust, and brown tones that God has blended into mountains and rock formations that display His majesty. I think about The Long Walk, and what it would be like to grow up knowing this is part of the heritage and wounds of your people.

Navajo people in the area where we will serve anticipate our arrival, and I am excited to see people who I met there. I am thrilled to enjoy the blessing of seeing people who shared their history with me last year, and in doing so, taught me. I’m thinking about the extreme poverty. I remember the Navajo youth who live on the special education campus in St. Michael, so they can receive the services they need, in terms of health and education.

I’m thinking about the slight bit of nerves I have at taking my children about seven states away from their dad, my amazing husband, for more than a week. I’m thinking about his week of solitude, less than a month after he starts a new career path. I’m thinking about what it might feel like to him, to not be going along this year.

As I replay events of the previous trips to the Reservation in my mind, I experience a jumble of needs - physical, emotional and spiritual - that I want to be part of fulfilling. It makes a long enough Dorcas the Do-Gooder list. Yet, I know only God is big enough to provide. All good things come from Him.

I look forward to bonding with team members on the long drive down. I look forward to laughter and friendship happening all around me. I know it won't be easy. I know the Enemy won't like what we want to do. But I also know He who is in me, is greater than he who is in the world.

Dear Lord,
You are the God of grace and peace, perfect. You are love. Please help us to help people. I am blessed Lord. Please simply use me as your vessel. Use our team. Show yourself all around the Navajo Reservation. I pray for the salvation of many. Help us to spread your love and care. Bring sustained change, please, Lord. Raise people up, to your glory.  Please help each of our team members and their whole families to be safe and deeply knit to you.
In Jesus’ Name,
Defend the weak and the fatherless; uphold the cause of the poor and the oppressed.
Psalm 82:3

©Helene Bergren. All Rights Reserved.


  1. Would you pray for our mission team as we leave March 11?
    Would you consider supporting Mission Navajo?

    You can also support anonymously by sending donations to:
    The Ridge – Prairie Ridge Church
    825 NW 36th St., Ankeny, IA 50023
    Be sure to mention Mission Navajo, please.

    We are focusing on coats, blankets for physical donations, and firewood purchases as a use for monetary donations this year.

    Walmart gift cards are also welcome, as surprise needs are put in front of us while on the trip.

  2. Amen to the prayer of your heart throughout this entire writing here Helene. I hope to be traveling to the East side of Arizona sometime during the first week of March. I'll be driving a school bus with extra room; wonder now if this mission has any supplies you all need dropped off?
    Many Blessings to all of you and those you minister to.

  3. Stan -

    Thanks for the blessings and offer of help, my friend! I will pass your offer on! Pray for an outpouring of blessings so we might truly need your help. Wouldn't that be a blast in Christ????!!!


  4. Stan, my friend, you may be in the business of moving a bunk bed and a tv or two, possibly for a school there. We'll keep you posted. I think you have Rod's cell phone number, and you can get my cell from him.

    Thanks so much for your offer. You get the brother-in-Christ Gold Star of the Day! :-)


  5. LOL indeed. Gold stars are grrrreat! Thanks. I better subscribe to your blog so I know next time when there's follow up to comments. :) I was telling Debbie about this and how reading this post of yours reminded me how much I enjoyed yours and Anne Landhuis writing when the PRC newsletter was in print.

    My health will prevent me from being much help loading and unloading things that are somewhat heavy, but my thoughts when I offered is that there will likely be many hands available for both. I'm going to pick up my bus today and the day is full, but Janelle sent a neat note too, I'll make sure to get in contact with both of you and my buddy The Rodster during the weekend at some point!
    I can't believe how excited I am that this might be helpful!!! Our Lord is sooooo patient and kind!

  6. Excellent Stan-o! We can talk to Janelle about arranging unloading help.

    It is good to know God will use us, so I am not surprised at how you feel about being helpful. You're one of those people who tries to give. :-)

    Peace out!