An Artist Serving in a Remote Area in South Asia
5 Mar 2019
I moved from South Africa to Australia with my family when I was about eleven years old. For me, it was incredibly difficult to adapt to this new country and all the changes that I was going through, triggering anxiety and sleeping problems. It was during this season of great difficulty I started to dig into the Word of God hoping for Jesus to become my best friend.
I was only twelve years old when I first sensed God’s calling. I was sitting on my bedroom floor reading the Bible when I came across Matthew 28, the Great Commission. I must have heard and read this verse many times, but at that particular moment, it just jumped out at me. I couldn’t stop thinking about this command that Jesus gave us right before ascending to our Father. I remember bursting into tears while God was pouring love for the nations into my heart. It was an overwhelming experience I will never forget.
Life as a Missionary
From that point on, I wanted to get involved in short missionary trips to tell the good news to everyone out there who hadn’t heard about Jesus. Thankfully, I attended a Christian school, where I had my first exposure to missions. One day, I was participating in an assembly service where a small group of students were sharing stories from their recent missionary trip to Thailand. I loved that they had been able to practically help people and also share the gospel, something that I desired to do. I thought to myself “I want to go on the next trip that happens, I don’t care where it is, I just want to see what it’s all about”. Unfortunately, according to the school, I was too young to go, but I didn’t let that stop me. In a desperate attempt to convince people, I talked to my school’s Principal and some other teachers to ask for special permission to go. In the end, I was amazed when they agreed I could go on a trip next year.
I was fourteen when I went on my first short-term trip to Thailand and following that I went to Russia three times where I shared the gospel through art, music and drama. My heart for missions was growing throughout my school years, but the place where I would spend time as a missionary only became clear when I finished school and met my husband. We went to South Asia together and during that trip God confirmed His plans for us and how He would use our gifts and skills in mission.
An important aspect of being involved in mission is mentoring people so they can also make disciples. Where we live at the moment, we are part of a little house church where I met a wonderful and enthusiastic woman. God has given her an amazing maturity to grow in her faith and a real passion for the Word, so I invited her to stay with my family a couple of days a week to help her progress in her spiritual journey. As I spent time with her, I realised that the Buddhist religion and beliefs were still integrated in her way of life which I wouldn’t have known if I hadn’t spent this time with her. Now, she is sharing the gospel at school with her friends and growing in her faith every day.
A Woman and a Missionary
As a woman, cross-cultural ministry has been both exciting and challenging. Sometimes, it can be overwhelming, and I even feel lonely. However, I have so much joy being a wife and mum who is there for my family, and I am sure no matter where in the world I was living, this would be my most important role.
The Lord has taken care of everything my family needs and has been with us every step of the way, providing, protecting, and even in moments of quiet giving me time to paint. I have a little online shop where I sell small scale artworks to Australia, so I use whatever art supplies I can pack in my suitcase to paint. I have also collaborated with Bible translators providing illustrations for a new version of the Bible produced in the local language.
My personal experience has taught me that God always gives us everything we need to do what he has called us to do. May our response always be, “Use me”.
– A Pioneers worker.
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