I heard the call to serve others out of love for God from the time I was a young girl. My heart has always been drawn to cross-cultural relationships. While a senior in high school, our family hosted a foreign exchange student from Japan for nine months. I always thought I would head to serve in a third world country, but my experience with my new Japanese “sister” opened my eyes to the spiritual needs in other parts of the world.
Within four years I was serving as a volunteer in Japan for six months. This is where I received my next assignment, which was to go to seminary to become more equipped for the next part of my journey. While in seminary and after graduation, I had the opportunity to provide support to others who were serving overseas through my employment at International Ministries of the American Baptist Churches, USA. During this time and following, I hosted many international partners, college students, church groups, and co-workers in my home. Hosting has always been a part of my life and who I am. I continue to host as I open my home to individuals and groups, especially those connected with my own children.
Over the many years since my first call, I have been involved in service of many different kinds. I have tried to “bloom where planted” and allow God to use me wherever I am – recognizing that we are all called to share God’s love with the people around us, no matter where we are. I have served as Youth Leader to some churches in West Virginia, Sunday School teacher and Nursery Coordinator to churches in Pennsylvania and Colorado, Chaplain to elders in a Senior Living Community in Colorado, Pastor to a small church in Ohio, and counselor to many along my journey.
I have lived in many different states and traveled to different countries and I know what it is like to feel like a “stranger”. I have been blessed to receive amazing hospitality over the years and I know what it is like to feel lonely. I want to continue to extend the hospitality of Jesus Christ to others.
I have experienced great loss and many challenges in my life, but I am grateful that God chooses to create beauty from ashes and brokenness. And I am grateful that God is my redeemer, who can use my brokenness to bring comfort and hope to others.
While unable to leave the shores of this country at this time, I am very excited about being able to reach the nations right here where I live as I continue to raise my kids and serve with IFI. My kids support me and join me in this calling. My daughter Ana is a Sophomore at Heidelberg University. My daughter Naomi is a Junior in High School. My son Joel is in 8th grade. We live on almost 2 acres and are surrounded by farms. We enjoy our chickens and many other pets and love to share these with others.