Finding Your Purpose in a Pandemic!
By : Murn J. | Volunteer
I first arrived at Ciudad Refugio in January as a member of a World Race team. We were supposed to spend two months in Colombia followed by two months in Ecuador and then Peru. Ever since I arrived here in Colombia, I have fallen completely in love with this foundation. I felt so at home and saw God working in ways that I had never seen before. As we were approaching our last few weeks here, I was almost praying that something would happen that would allow us to stay here for longer.
About two weeks before the quarantine began, I went paragliding with my team. As I was looking out over the beautiful city of Medellín, I prayed to God that He would give it to me and would one day bring me back here. And God reminded me of Luke 11: “Ask and you shall receive, seek and you shall find, knock and the door shall be opened.” So, I prayed: “Lord, will you bring me back here some day?” And for the rest of that 20-minute flight while literally soaring above the city, it became a spiritual journey full of God’s promise. First, He showed me the birds of the sky and reminded me of how He provides for them. And then reminded me of Psalm 23, that He will lead me to green pastures and that He is my home.
The following Sunday my team received the heart-breaking news that we would all be flown home due to the Coronavirus crisis that was rapidly getting worse. The team was given short notice and flights had to be booked that very night. We were, however, given the option to not get on a return flight and to sign a contract that relieved the World Race organization of any responsibility for us. My team had 20 minutes to pray about it and make a decision. Throughout this whole evening, I felt so sure that I was not leaving. That my time as not yet finished in Colombia and that Ciudad Refugio was where I was meant to be.
So I began to ponder: What if I stayed? Even though I had no idea what it would look like, or if the foundation would even let me stay. I opened my bible – purposely not trying to open it on one of those conveniently encouraging chapters – and I was brought straight back to Luke 11. This was all the confirmation I needed.
Although far sooner than I had ever imagined, God was inviting me to stay in Colombia and to trust completely in Him like I never had before. He promised me that He would provide for me and would lead me to green pastures. So, I told my team that I would not be getting on a flight. I had no idea where I would be living, how I would be serving, how long I would be staying, but I was filled with a complete confidence and a peace that this is where God wants me and that I would be safe.
Three months later, I’m still here! I have said goodbye to all my teammates. I have been welcomed with open arms by the foundation who have allowed me to stay on as a volunteer. God has provided me with a visa and with funds to allow me to stay for a year. I have found family and purpose in the work that I am doing. And I am SO HAPPY! I feel so honored to be here; that in the midst of all this craziness God would call me. I am in awe of how God would give me the desires He placed on my heart and allow me to serve in a place that really needs it. And that He would use my desire to go to South America, my Semesters journey, my love for Ciudad Refugio, to call me to Colombia for such a time as this. Praise God!