M E M B E R M O M E N T
M I S S I O N S
Jeff Dimick | January 2020
My heart for missions began while a student at Oklahoma Christian in 1983. I joined a group of students and faculty on a six-week summer mission trip to Germany. That trip touched my heart. We used a study guide on the book of Luke that had just been developed by individuals on OC’s campus. Using the Bible and this material we studied English with interested individuals in Mannheim and Ludwigshafen, Germany. Halfway through the six-week trip, we were scheduled to meet another OC group for a week of travel around Europe. We decided not to take the break believing staying committed to our students took priority. That was a decision we never regretted.
After moving to Los Angeles, CA in 1986 to begin my career in the aerospace industry, I kept feeling a tug to return to the mission field. I went on short term mission trips to the City of Children in Ensenada, Mexico. Those experiences intensified the desire within me to go on a longer trip. I remember writing down three personal goals sometime in the early 1990’s. One of those goals was to go on a multi-week mission trip within three years. I sealed the note and put it away for safe keeping. Time passed, and I forgot about the note.
In 1993 I received a call from my uncle who was a campus minister at a church in Memphis, TN. He asked if I would like to join him and his two brothers on a mission trip to Ukraine for six weeks. I jumped at the opportunity. I remember planning for the trip, raising money, and preparing materials on Christian Evidences. Ukraine had gained independence from the Soviet Union in August 1991, so we were traveling to a former Soviet state shortly after the fall of communism in that region. While in Ukraine I met people who had never seen a Bible before. One of the most interesting experiences was sharing with a science club where every member had a PhD (or equivalent) in some scientific field such as nuclear physics. They shared that they had never met a scientist who believed in God. They were genuinely curious about how I could believe in God. They sat on the edges of their seats and asked me to explain. One individual, Sergei, wrote to me upon my return to the States, that sometimes he imagines there is a God and the he prays. He said he’s not sure he believes, but when he prays to God it seems to help.
Sometime in 1994 I stumbled across that note I had sealed. I opened it. Amazingly, all three goals had been met. Since that time I have been back to Ukraine seven times. I’ve taken mission trips to Honduras, El Salvador, Mexico, Russia, Belarus, and Lithuania. Maybe it’s time I write down a few more goals. It would do my heart good to participate in a mission trip with my Springs family.