As I have said before, I attended Mount Vernon Nazarene University. I spent four lovely years there studying Intercultural Studies. I learned about contextualization between cultures and religions (it can be fun trying to figure it out), I learned some aspects of theology (even then I didn’t quite scrape the surface), and I also learned about the best recipes I can make in the cafeteria with own creativity (If you bring your own avocados, you can make guacamole! BYOA).
Since I was a freshman in high school, I felt a tug to venture into full time missions.
Flashback: I was at a church service with two missionaries from a country in Africa. I had no idea what I wanted to do at that point in life at 15 years of age and I had not one crazy passion that I wanted to pursue. As I listened to the speakers talk about what missionaries do, it was as if I heard God whisper in my ear, “Hey you, you should do that.” And that was that – basically. The missionaries asked at the end of their service for everyone who had a call to missions to stand up… so I stood up! That is actually how I let my parents know what I was going to dedicate my life to. I must say, they were a bit shocked I had never mentioned this before! Nevertheless, here I am 8 years later.
This then led me to MVNU, which led me to studying abroad and going way farther outside of my comfort zone that maybe I should (sometimes), which then led me to the 365M program. In reality, this program will be perfect for me in what I need in this time of my life. I’m totally willing to go, I’m adventurous, and I have a brain that has a desire to learn…. but sometimes, I need someone to guide me. I run so fast sometimes I leave my feet behind me a mile back and I don’t realize it until I’m flat on my face. With 365M, I get to jump into full time missions for a year, take master’s classes to push my brain farther, and be under a mentorship by experienced missionaries. That sounds pretty cool to me. I guess that’s why I’m here.
One aspect of 365M that is currently kicking my butt is that I have to do the hard parts of being a missionary too. That means, I have to tell people about what I’m doing, ask them to pray for me, and maybe even ask them to donate. I took a whole course this summer on what financial partnership in missions looks like. It’s hard – that’s what it looks like. I already have learned one big thing for the next time I need to raise support:
I was totally naive and thought, “Surely, I won’t procrastinate too much, and it will all be okay.” Only half of that sentence remains true today.
Since I have been officially accepted into the program and given a set destination (Zagreb, Croatia), I have been getting the word out about what in the world I am doing and why??
I like to think of what I am doing as a student teacher process, but for missionaries. I am actually teaching the class, doing my own lessons, but have a sturdy backbone of a real teacher pointing me in the right direction. I get to see what missions is all about.
I am doing this program also in faith. I have believe that this is the direction God is pointing me towards. I have a feeling that I have no idea what I am in for and I probably have no way to ready myself for it. I just need to make sure my seat belt is on and I continue trusting God.
I am beyond thankful and humbled by those who have already decided to pray for me, support me financially, and to send me positive thoughts throughout my next year.
God is so so good – despite my butt kicking procrastination.
Peace and blessings,