My desire is that, “those who have never been told of Him will see, and those who have never heard will understand (Romans 15:21).” I know that God has called me to show His love to those who are unreached by serving full time among the Deaf of South Asia.
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 many 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 make disciples” among the Deaf in South Asia, and I surrendered my life to God’s plan for me.
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 amazing opportunity to go to India for two weeks! (My first time out of the United States). 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 (TTU) 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 TTU (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 TTU, so I traveled with my parents in Choose Life Ministries for the rest of 2011 and part of 2012. 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 the future work that God has called me to. While traveling with my family I had many opportunities to share about the work I did in Nepal; I shared at Churches, schools, clubs, job corps, and one RA/GA’s group. I also continued to sign in the adults, youth and children services that my parents spoke at. During that time traveling with CLM, God really been taught me so much from His Word, and I believe that it was really a time of preparation for me.
In the Summer of 2012, I was able to serve at a Deaf Church in North Carolina, working at their Deaf Camp for youth and children. Then in the Fall 0f 2012, I transferred to Gardner-Webb University in North Carolina, to finish my degree in American Sign Language. I was there for three semesters, and just graduated this past December (2013). While attending there I was blessed to be able to continue serving at the Deaf Church and helping with their Deaf youth and children’s group. I loved my time working there, and learned so much! Now, as of January 2015, I am serving for two years as a Journeyman in South Asia with the Deaf Affinity. If you want to read more about my experiences here in South Asia checkout my blog http://deafwillhearthebook.blogspot.com/. I also send out a monthly newsletter, if you would like to receive that, please click the following link: http://www.chooselifeusa.org/signup/ or you can email me at: firstname.lastname@example.org. And my teammate and I have a secret Facebook group to share updates about what God is doing among the Deaf of South Asia, if you would like to be added to that group please email me at: email@example.com. Thank you so much!
2017 Update: Since I completed my Journeyman term with the International Mission Board last year, I have been traveling and sharing my story with churches across the United States. If you would like for me to come share about Deaf Missions with your church, children’s ministry, youth ministry, women’s ministry, or other small group, you can contact me at (704) 300-8020 or at firstname.lastname@example.org. I have a full calendar of speaking dates for the month of October in Kentucky, but the rest of my calendar for this year and next year is mostly free still. Thank you!
“I have been following the plan spoken of in the Scriptures, where it says, ‘Those who have never been told about Him will see, and those who have never heard of Him will understand.’”
Romans 15:21.“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
“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