why are you a missionary?

have you always wanted to do this?

do you like teaching?

why bolivia?

when did you feel like you should come here?

these questions have been asked so many times.

canadians ask me.

bolivians ask me.

well, other than saying this is where God has called me to be,

i will try to explain the process.

i have longed to be a missionary and help people since i first heard of one of my classmates family who went on short term missions building houses when i was in the first grade.

i remember thinking, “wow, thats amazing, i want to do that.”

i had a desire to help people.

i always knew that this is something i would like to do.

growing up,

i threw that thought or desire to do missions out the back window.

it wasn’t until january 2014,

while in bible school in mexico,

where this thought arose again.

there was a missions class for the 2nd year students,

i was first year, so did not have the chance to take this class,

i was disappointed in not being able to take this class,

and not being able to go on an overnight mission trip in the mountains.

it kind of started the whole mission train.

i still did not fully let myself in to the idea of doing missions.

the engine was running,

but i was holding that brake down with all i had.

where my life seemed to be heading at the time,

i just thought it was just some fleeting thought,

not something i would ever really do,

and not a passion of mine.

in january 2016,

two years later,

i decided to fast from all social media for a few months.

my life had altered in big ways in that past year,

and i was desiring to hear God and His plan for my life.

not even a week in,

missions.

i don’t know what triggered it or how it came back into my mind,

but i acted right away.

i spoke with a few pastors about different ministries.

alberta?

b.c?

mexico?

africa?

bolivia?

europe?

australia?

israel?

these were a few places where i was thinking.

i did not feel one specific calling to any certain place.

i just knew i didn’t want to do bolivia..

it was just like.. bolivia.

ya know..

i wouldn’t mind visiting,

seeing how the lifestyle is there,

but missions…?

no.

not bolivia.

crossed that one of my list,

literally.

it was narrowed down to israel or mexico.

and thennnn,

one of the sundays in january,

there was a young couple who were missionaries in bolivia speaking at my church.

as the woman started speaking,

i could feel my heart beating,

i could feel my heart breaking,

i could feel God calling me out to bolivia.

in that very moment, as they were walking off the stage,

i knew.

i knew that it’s bolivia.

i need to go to bolivia.

so, that wednesday,

after work (i was working at a school as a special needs assistant),

i met up with a pastor at church,

and as we were going through pictures of israel,

i told him, “…or maybe even bolivia…”

you better believe i said it in a voice so quiet half of me was hoping he wouldn’t hear it.

he said “you’re interested on bolivia?!”

“i saw that there is a school there, by our bulletin, do they ever need teachers?”

and just like that,

he x’d out of the pictures, and we looked into the school in villa nueva, bolivia.

we got into contact with the mission director in la crete and in bolivia that very week,

and bam.

a few weeks later i had sent in my information.

and now, not even 2 years later,

i am just about to end my one year term in bolivia.

it has challenged me,

it has made me grow me in my walk with GOD.

i am so grateful for GOD calling me here.

these people.

they are my people.

they are my brothers and sisters.

they are so near and dear to my heart.

GOD is there.

HE speaks.

all we need to do is listen.

 

all my love,

joanna ❤

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