Original Post Date: September 1, 2015
The timeline of how I got to where I am now starts in December 2012/January 2013. I was planning a trip to Dallas with my college campus ministry to attend a conference known as the World Missions Summit (WMS). In addition to college students, WMS invites missionaries from all over the world to share their experiences and give the students a glimpse of what it means to wholeheartedly take up the Great Commission that Jesus gave His disciples. “‘Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age'” (Matthew 28:19-20). This was an entirely new reality for me. I was amazed with the hundreds of people who said yes to Jesus in such an intense way and the stories they shared with us about life overseas. I didn’t have to hear many stories or go to many workshops to understand that these people were the real deal; they were all in for Jesus, and my mind was nowhere near being able to comprehend it. I left the conference with a new perspective on world missions as well as a new respect for the people who were willing to devote their lives to God to serve as missionaries. I’m not sure that anyone could leave a conference like that and not ask themselves if they would be willing to consider life as a missionary. Anytime the question surfaced in my mind, I would suppress it further and further…until the Lord found a different way to speak to me.
I spent the following summer working, taking classes, and visiting friends when I had the free time. I decided that I wanted my spiritual walk during the summer to be just as abundant as it had been during the school year, so I made it a point to visit my friends’ churches or find a church to invite a friend to. I visited many different churches, and yet I began to hear a pattern in the sermons being preached: they all made a reference back to Matthew 28:19-20. All of them. This was no coincidence. The question I’d tried to suppress was back and coming to church with me every Sunday! I knew that the Lord was trying to speak to me, but I didn’t even begin to know how to come face to face with Him in this. The last service I attended that summer was at a friend’s church in my home town, and surprise, the sermon was about missions. The speaker communicated the heart behind missions and encouraged the congregation to come to the front of the stage to grab a list of countries to pray for at the end of the service. The Lord instantly dropped two countries into my head: Austria and Hungary. His words surprised me. I’d never given either of those places any thought. I left my seat to grab the list of countries. Much to my dismay, neither of the countries were on the list. “His voice was so clear,” I thought, obviously confused. I tucked God’s words away in the back of my mind until I could get home and make sense of this.
After arriving back to my apartment and unpacking from my trip home, I took my laptop and plopped onto the couch. I typed “Austria” into the Google search bar and clicked on images. It was a nice place, but nothing in particular caught my attention. I deleted “Austria” and typed in “Hungary.” I nonchalantly skimmed each picture until my eyes fell on a familiar image. I had no idea then, but I was looking at a picture of the Szechenyi Baths in Budapest, Hungary. The large pool area and yellow brick building looked too familiar for me to ignore it.
I’ve seen this place before, I thought to myself.
I had seen this place in a dream I’d had just a few months before! It was a silly dream, actually. I was on vacation with my roommates and remember seeing the large pool area and yellow brick building. Nothing profound or spiritual took place, so I wrote it off as unimportant, but this was very important! This was the Lord manifesting Himself in a way that I had not experienced Him before. Deeply moved and amazed by this new revelation of God, I once again tucked my experience away in the back of my mind. I was still in school and knew that even if I was going to Budapest, I would not be going anytime soon.
Fast forward one year later to my first summer in Montana (2014). It was the summer before my senior year in college, and the Lord asked me to surrender my graduate school plans to Him. I decided to devote my fall and spring semester to Him through a global missions organization called Youth With A Mission (YWAM). YWAM trains up Christian leaders to go out into the world and share the love and gospel message of Christ. As if the decision to postpone graduate school was not hard enough, I now had to choose one YWAM base out of the hundreds scattered across the globe to apply to. In the midst of my overwhelming decision making process, the Lord reminded me of my dream. I navigated through the YWAM base locations in search for a base in Hungary. Sure enough, I found a base in Budapest, the same city that my dream took place in. I did all that was necessary to undergo the application process, and I am proud to say that I will be leaving for Budapest on Saturday, September 12th and spending six months overseas.
I truly believe that this next season of my life will be an extremely special one. I believe that the Lord will reward me for the sacrifices I’ve made and take me deeper into my walk with Him. I believe that I am called to Budapest for a specific purpose, so in eleven days I am going to jump on a plane to find out what it is! Here’s to the Great Commission!
Christ as my anchor
If you would like to financially contribute to my time Budapest, visit http://gofundme.com/o1t8jk. All donations will go towards the program tuition, a mission trip to India, and my personal living expenses.