Medical Missions and Me
Having been adopted from China when I was young, I had a particular interest in the Asian population. I didn’t realize, however, that God would use a medical missions conference to fulfill my desire to serve others working in East Asia.
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I first attended the Global Missions Health Conference (GMHC) in the fall of my freshman year in college. I didn’t know what to expect, but I was quite surprised at the magnitude of it. There were literally hundreds of organizations and sessions in one of the biggest churches I’d ever seen.
It was amazing to see so many people all committed to healthcare and Christ.
Even the family that hosted my college group was an inspiration. The parents and their six children made room for all of us in their home by giving up their own beds and all sleeping on the floor in the master bedroom. I realized with the entire experience that missions can look different depending on what you have and where you are in life.
I Realized God Can Use Each of Us Uniquely
Maybe you have your home to offer, maybe you have your skills, and maybe you have other resources. God uses them all for His glory. My experience planted a seed in my heart to look for opportunities to serve in the medical field with established organizations. I walked away from the conference knowing that I would have to attend again in the future.
Fast forward a couple of years… I attended the conference once again and I stayed with the same family. Their continual generosity and hospitality amazed me. Apparently, it had not been a one-time deal, but something they enjoyed doing year after year.
I Followed My Gifting to Explore What God Had for Me
At this point, I was further along in my nursing program and looking for more ways to become involved with an organization. As I walked around, the OMF missions table caught my eye and I talked with one of their workers for quite a while. Having been adopted from China when I was young, I had a particular interest in serving the Asian population. After the conference, I tried to go with OMF on one of their short-term mission trips. Unfortunately, the timing never quite worked out, but the seed was still planted.
I graduated from college and started working as a registered nurse in a pediatric hospital. Once I had been a nurse in the workforce for about a year, I felt called to use my extra time to serve.
It was difficult between working the night shift and different nights every week to find a way to consistently do so. That’s the medical field, though! Even with this difficulty in scheduling, I believed that God could still use me without having to quit my job.
God’s Plan Looked Different Than I Expected
That’s when he reminded me of OMF. There was a volunteer position available that required following up with individuals interested in OMF. It was flexible in both timing and location and matched my heart for serving in Asia. It was the perfect opportunity for where I was in life. I served in this capacity for about a year and a half. One day I hope to be able to go on a vision trip as well.
What I love about GMHC is that its impact has lasted years beyond that extra-long weekend. God used each of my experiences and the individuals I met there to guide me to what he had in store for me and his kingdom.
If you’re doubting whether the conference is worthwhile to give up a weekend for, the answer is yes! You never know how your view of missions might change or how you might just find the resources there to assist you on your journey.
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