If you had asked me in college what I was going to do with my life, I would probably have told you that I was planning to work as a Nurse Practitioner with Spanish-speaking people in the States. Little did I know that God had different plans in store that were greater than I could have ever imagined! I have always had a love for foreign missions, so I decided to go on one last trip the summer before my final year of college. I was planning on studying in Spain at the beginning of the summer, so I thought it would be great if I could do a mission trip while I was there. Every avenue that I pursued, however, seemed to be another dead end. Although I was discouraged, I soon discovered that sometimes we think we know what is right for us, but God has plans for us that far exceed what we could ever ask for or imagine.
During a Cedarville Missions Conference, I was invited to be part of a summer internship in the Dominican Republic. The dates worked out perfectly, and God gave me such a peace about it that I applied within two days, and from that moment my life was set on a totally different trajectory. Over the course of the next year, God confirmed in my heart the desire to move there, prepared me, and provided 100% of my full-time support within a few short months! I moved to San Pedro de Macorís, Dominican Republic, in November of 2012.
God has opened up many opportunities for me to serve here in the local church and, of course, use my skills as a nurse. I am the school nurse for the elementary and middle school that is part of the ministry, and I also work as a nurse with women at risk that have been rescued and come to work in our Safe house. I have also had the opportunity to plan many evangelistic medical outreaches that have been mainly public health-focused, and am looking forward to having a Cedarville nursing group come to work with me in May!
The professor leading the Cedarville group, Marsha Swinehart, has been such a big encouragement to me since before I even moved down here. I could not be more grateful for the professors I had at Cedarville University and the way they not only taught us how to use Nursing as a ministry, but they personally invested in our lives. My favorite nursing class was Public Health. It taught me that meeting spiritual needs goes hand in hand with meeting physical needs. Nursing is not just about healing or handing out medications; it is about advocating, listening, and teaching. It is a profession in which you not only can impact individuals, but whole communities as well! Nursing has opened up so many doors for me to share the gospel, and I am grateful to have gone to a university that prepared me so well for the mission field!