In third grade I wrote a report on Gladys Aylwards, a little known missionary in China during the 1900s. Although I’m sure the report was nothing notable it had an lasting impact on my life. It was a seed planted in my heart towards full time ministry.
When I was in highschool my family went to serve in Jamaica at an orphanage our church sponsored. This experience further opened my eyes to the needs of the brokenhearted. Over the next four years I made eight or so trips to the orphanage to work with the staff and children (and hang out with my future brother!). My heart broke for the Fatherless and I knew I was called to the brokenhearted.
On one of those trips to the orphanage, I met a family that lived close to Iowa State University, where I attended school, and we stayed friends. This family would a few years later go on to found a restoration home for survivors of sex trafficking. They were my first introduction to human trafficking. I had no idea at the time another seed was being planted in my heart.
When I started at ISU, my intention was to go into full-time overseas ministry upon graduation. Instead I ended up moving to Houston, and soon afterwards met my husband (yeah!!). As I worked as an engineer, I found myself wondering what God had for me. What if this desire to serve the brokenhearted that was planted at such a young age was no longer what God wanted for me?
Yet I still had this desire. I wondered if I’d missed the boat. I wondered if some years of wandering meant that I wouldn’t get to fulfill what I thought was my life’s calling. But God is so good. He is a redeemer. His ways are higher than my ways.
I started mentoring a survivor and fell in love with the work of Rescue Houston. One day while I wrestled with my purpose and my current position as an engineer, I got an email from a Rescue Houston employee. She informed the volunteers she was resigning and moving into long-term restoration. I saw the tiniest crack of a door opening. Could this be for me God? Surely I am not qualified. I told God to open a door for me and I’d walk through it. So I crossed my fingers, said a prayer and sent in my resume. Nothing about my resume said Survivor Advocate. But God did and now I’m here, working for Rescue Houston because GOD IS AWESOME.