The following is a reflection from Kendra Hernandez, a member of Peace Lutheran Church, Las Cruces (New Mexico), another one of the volunteers working in Puerto Rico this week to aid in recovery from Hurricane Maria. Over the next weeks, volunteers will serve and support as a part of the Building Puentes initiative with the Caribbean Synod, the Metro D.C. Synod, and our Delaware-Maryland Synod. A few of them will be reflecting on their experiences, and we will share them here on our blog.

“Sometimes the fact that there is nothing about you that makes you the right person to do something is exactly what God is looking for.” -Nadia Bolz-Weber

Now read that again. Slowly.

Every time I read this passage from Nadia’s Accidental Saints, it hits me in a whole new way. When I relate it to this mission trip, it sheds light on a few different things I have been anxious about. Leadership positions. Not having “enough” experience in a construction task. Not being proficient in Spanish enough to speak with the community that has so graciously welcomed me for the past week and the next week to come. Anxieties come in waves of feeling not like I am the right person to be doing something like this. Some people around me have also shared these insecurities, but it leads me to ask one simple question: “Why?”

Why did we sign up in the first place? At one point or another, we looked inside our hearts and souls and found a yearning to help this beloved colony of Puerto Rico. We signed up because at one point, we were ready to learn how to help and to get our hands dirty. My friends, if you still believe you have not helped, let me tell you this: YOU HAVE. Regardless of whether you are reading this in the comfort of your home or the comfort of your bunk bed here at camp, you are playing a part in this wave of love and generosity that we are actively sending to this island. Your actions are enough. Your love is enough. You are enough.

Here I am, Lord. Is it I, Lord?
I have heard you calling in the night
I will go, Lord, if you lead me
I will hold your people in my heart

We will hold your people in our hearts.