Caitlyn (March 12,1990)
“On that day, the Deaf will hear the words of the Book.” ~ Isaiah 29:18
My desire, and the call God has placed on my life, is to one day teach English to Deaf students in South Asia full time and to share the Gospel with them (the Deaf are the fourth largest unreached people group in the world).
Growing up my family was always actively involved in Church, plus my mom homeschooled my older brother, my younger sister, and me, and our schoolwork was all based off the Bible. So I heard about God from an early age, and as a young child I realized my need for a Savior, and I surrendered my life to God and made Him the Lord of my life. I was baptized with my brother when I was seven years old, and I continued to be discipled at home and at church, and to mature in my faith. I had the opportunity to attend an amazing GA/Acteens Camp in Leesburg, FL, when I was nine years old. While at the camp I heard about how there are over 6.8 billion people in the world who have never heard about God, and how the Deaf are one of the largest unreached people groups in the world. During that week of camp I felt God calling me to one day go and bring the Gospel to the Deaf in South Asia, and I surrendered my life to God’s plan for me and the future ministry He had called me to.
Since then God has continued to reiterate that call on my life. In 2001, when God called my family to move to Pineville, KY, for my dad to attend Clear Creek Baptist Bible College, I had the opportunity to take two college-level sign language classes, and also to attend two Deaf camps. In 2005, when God called my family to start Choose Life Ministries and to travel around the United States full time to share a Biblical Worldview of LIFE in Churches, I would always sign a song (having to do with LIFE) at the Churches we spoke at. I would sign a song for the adults when my dad spoke to them, for the youth when my brother spoke to them, and for the children when my mom spoke to them.
In 2007, when I “graduated” from high school, my parents felt like I should wait a year before I started college, and so I continued to travel with them. And because of that I had the opportunity to go on a two week mission trip to India (my first time out of the United States). It was an amazing opportunity, and I learned so much! Through that God confirmed once again that He was calling me to full time service overseas, specifically in South Asia. In 2008, I began attending Tennessee Temple University in Chattanooga, TN, pursuing a degree in Sign Language Interpreting, with a minor in Intercultural Studies. I learned so much during my two and half years there through my classes, and through the many Deaf events I was able to be involved in.
In 2010, I began to feel God leading me away from Temple (at the time I thought I would only be gone a semester, but God had other plans). I found out about an opportunity to teach English at a Deaf school in Nepal, so I applied for the trip and was accepted. I spent six months (from January 2011 to July 2011) teaching and getting to know some of the most amazing Deaf children in the whole world! I loved my time there and I miss it so much! I especially miss all the wonderful people I became friends with while there, especially the Deaf students. I am very thankfully for that opportunity, and I hope that God will allow me to go back some day.
By the time I returned I knew that God had other plans for me than returning to Tennessee Temple University. So I have been traveling with my parents in Choose Life Ministries since I got back from Nepal in July, 2011. Fall 2011, I also took online classes while traveling with my parents and am now certified to teach English as a second language and hope to use what I learned from those classes in my future ministry that God has called me to. While traveling with my family this year I have had many opportunities to share about the work I did in Nepal; I have shared at Churches, schools, clubs, job corps, and one RA/GA’s group. I have also continued to sign in the adults, youth and children services that my parents have spoken at. During this time traveling with CLM, God has really been teaching me so much from His Word, and I believe that this has really been a time of preparation for me. I am still praying about what God would have me to do next. I know that He has called me to bring the Gospel to the Deaf in South Asia, but I don’t know what all the steps are along the way to get there. I am currently praying about returning to school this Fall, 2012 (not to Temple, but to another school), to go ahead and get my bachelor’s degree in Deaf studies (it would take me about 3 semesters). For now I will continue to travel with CLM, at least for the rest of this Spring semester, 2012. And then see where God leads me from there.
“For everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved. But how can they call on Him they have not believed in? And how can they believe without hearing about Him? And how can they hear without a preacher? And how can they preach unless they are sent? As it is written: How beautiful are the feet of those who announce the gospel of good things!” ~ Romans 10:13-15
“Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe everything I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” (This is God’s command to ALL believers). ~Matthew 28:19-20
“The harvest is abundant, but the workers are few. Therefore, pray to the Lord of the harvest to send out workers into His harvest.” ~ Matthew 9:37-38