MEET ABBY HOGGLE: a mission trip led to the understanding that even simple acts of service can glorify the Lord.
What led you to want to serve in Chicago?
I am a part of an amazing church family, Moundville BaptistChurch, and we have been going on North America mission trips since 2014. Since then, we have always assisted with the church planters in the suburbs of big cities. We have been to Cleveland, Baltimore, Denver, Toronto, and Chicago. Our pastor and his family have been a part of our church for seven years, but they started their ministry as church planters in Pennsylvania in the early 2000s. Our overseer when in PA, Tim Bailey, is now serving in Chicago as a church plant catalyst, and they had kept in touch with him over the years. Our pastor reached out to him and decided for us to serve under Tim for the week and assist his church planters in the suburbs of Chicago. It was a full-circle thing that only the Lord could do for us to get to serve under Tim, whom our pastor had planted a church under years before.
Why do you believe it’s important that we as believers support those working to plant churches?
Our church's core values come from Act 2:42- 47, "And they devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers. And awe came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were being done through the apostles. And all who believed were together and had all things in common. And they were selling their possessions and belongings and distributing the proceeds to all, as any had need. And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts, praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved." We believe in missional living, "And the Lord added to their number day by day those were who were being saved. Christ has called us to go and make disciples of ALL people. We desire to be missionaries everyday and at every place in which we live, work, rest, and play. We desire to be the tools that God will use to bring more people into a relationship withHimself. We also desire to go and help the ones who are planting churches elsewhere. We want to go and encourage them in their faith and what they are doing for the kingdom.
This man's name on the right is Mr. Ed. Mr. Ed got saved at 70 years old and had no family before he joined our church and became part of our church family. This was his first mission trip and he shared the Gospel every chance he got on that trip. He wore the Fund the Nations shirt every chance he got. This was his only summer mission trip with us before he went to be with Jesus in Heaven 2 months ago during our mission trip at home. We truly cherish the memories we have with him on this trip.
How did serving in Chicago grow you as a person and as a believer?
Serving in Chicago grew my church group and me tremendously. We grew closer together by spending timeserving, praying, traveling together, all the things you do on a mission trip together. My heart grew for the Lord of course but also for the church planters. The ones we served with were without their family and had not truly established a church family yet so they loved being around us, believers like them. It made me take a step back and say "Woah, I am so grateful to get to be around likeminded people at my church so often." I grew as a person and a believer by just being around lost people and getting to pray with them and share the Gospel with them. One of the days, we cleaned up a local park and someone said, "This is amazing that we get to bring glory to God's name by cleaning up this park." And that one day still serves as a statement to my heart of how I can bring glory to God's name by just doing a simple task.
What do you think people can do to help make their fundraising efforts successful?
Fundraising can be really hard. I would say one way to help is to have a positive attitude going into trying to approach someone. Share your passion with them and let them ask questions about what God can do through this fundraiser to help your cause.
If you could tell the world one thing about serving others through missions, what would you say?
JUST DO IT. Go share theGospel. It doesn't have to be in another country, it can be but it doesn't have to be. There is a sign as you leave a mission-focused summer camp I have attended for eight summers and it says "Entering YOUR Mission Field."Wherever you are right now is your mission field and as Christians, we are to use our mission field and share the Gospel with anyone around us.
Though we did not get to leave our community this summer on a mission trip, we did do a "mission trip" in our community this summer. The Lord had already led our pastor to do something in our community this year instead of taking a mission trip before the coronavirus even happened. We canvassed in our neighborhoods, led backyard bible clubs, did enhancements projects in our building, and our local high school.