ArticleMissionary Life

How the Gospel Opened This Woman’s Heart to Missions

Jennifer had no intention of becoming a missionary after her late conversion, but the Lord had other plans.
Jennifer had never been so confident in the Lord’s direction for her life.

In 2007, Jennifer moved to Akron for work, not having sat in a church pew for years. While in Akron, a woman invited her to church.

At first, Jennifer complied because she thought Wednesday Bible activities couldn’t hurt her young daughter. However, Jennifer was eventually drawn into prayer meetings and Sunday services.

Her childhood church had never preached the gospel, and so the news about Jesus’ death and resurrection compelled her to repentance and submission. At the age of 25, Jennifer was saved and baptized.

As she became more involved in the church, Jennifer decided to go on a short-term missions trip to Japan. She returned convinced that the uncomfortable and unstable lifestyle of the missionary wasn’t for her. But the missions mantra, “God doesn’t call the equipped, he equips the called,” prompted Jennifer to try again. So when the next opportunity came around, Jennifer took it and found herself heading to Portugal.

This experience left a very different impression on her. She remembers going to bed each night and waking up with the Portuguese people on her heart. Unsure of what to do, she began to pray, knowing that the Lord was behind this mental wrestling match.

The Lord won, and in 2018, Jennifer went back to Portugal, serving with ABWE’s field team at a children’s camp, maintaining the grounds at the Greater Lisbon Christian Academy, and assisting local churches. After the trip, the Lord’s call for Jennifer to enter ministry in Portugal had never been clearer.

Jennifer is currently completing prefield training with ABWE and plans to move to Portugal by June 2021. She will be assisting with business management for the Portugal field team and working with local churches to develop outreach strategies to single-parent homes.


Editor’s Note: Learn more about Jennifer’s ministry here.

About the Author

Loren Skinker serves as a communication specialist with ABWE and managing editor for Message Magazine. He graduated from Virginia Tech in May 2019 with a bachelor’s degree in communications and English.

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