QA 2: In It for the Long Haul

This week's question is from Dennis: "When you were called to the mission field did you feel it was a lifetime calling and that you would make Honduras your home or just a "season?" I ask because many missionaries are called then spend several years on deputation only to return to the States after a few years of mission work."

After graduating from college in 2001, I returned to Raleigh, NC, to teach in my alma mater. I spent my days immersed in classic literature, diagrams, and compositions. I absolutely loved it. Robbie taught third grade, so I enjoyed little opportunities to sneak down the hall and wink at him from his window. Then after school, we quickly changed, grabbed our whistles, and hustled to the gym to coach our middle school girls' basketball team. On Friday nights, we'd get together with another couple for a movie. Saturday morning was bus route-we'd pile into the car with some of my students/basketball team members and make our visits for Sunday morning. Then on Saturday night, we'd meet my parents at Milano's, a little pizzeria where we were usually the only customers. It was a good life--comfortable, safe. But the whole time we knew: it wasn't ours.

God had something completely different in mind for us, and that vision was growing in our hearts. We wanted to plant a church in Central America. And then another, and another. And wouldn't it be great to have a children's home? And a Christian school? And we'd need a Bible Institute to train nationals...

When we were on deputation, I met a few people in different churches who were actually from Honduras. They all asked the same questions, "Have you been to Honduras? And you really want to live there?" I think they were having a hard time picturing Americans happily living in a land of dirt roads and dengue fever. It really didn't make much sense.

But here we are, five years later, right at home in Honduras. This is our life, strange and unpredictable as it may be. We are here for the long haul. Unless God leads otherwise, this is the path for us. And we can't wait to see where it leads us.

I can't speak for other families, and I know there are a plethora of reasons why missionaries return from the field. Sometimes they leave prematurely; sometimes their work is considered complete, and they move on to a new task. Each missionary has a different story, and each ministry is unique.

But I do know that in our case, the mission field wasn't just "a good option" or "a nice idea" or even "something we want to try out for awhile." This is our calling, our life's work. And truly, there is no greater joy than to know and do the will of God, wherever that may lead you.
5 Responses
  1. Gwen Says:

    You're right. You all are right where you belong and we wouldn't have it any other way but we do miss you so much!

  2. The Feasters Says:

    I loved reading this because it's such a blessing to know that our dear friends are at home...not here where we'd like them to be (here where we are), but at home where God led them to be. Right in the center of His will. Our prayers continue for you guys as well as for Nico's family. Love you!

  3. Ricky Says:

    I have heard it and so have you: Every stage of life seems to be better than the previous one. Even when every stage seems to be so good, the grace of God brings you to a greater level--it is a level of more faith, more love, and more joy. The peace of God always follows. "The Milano's Stage" was good for all of us, but it cannot compare to "The Real Missions, Real Life Stage."

    How can it get any better? Don't know, but it will. What an adventure God's will truly is!

    Love you.


  4. Jessica Fannin Says:


    I just "stumbled" upon your blog---I linked in to it from Facebook. I just wanted to thank you for taking the time to do a fellow mommy :-) I know your time is precious, so I'm sure it's not easy to squeeze out the time to blog, but it does help others to know how to better pray for you and the other members of Team Honduras. My husband is a Pastor and we currently have the privilege of supporting Matt and Dalita Goins. Like Matt (and I just read, your husband as well), my hubby is a HUGE UK fan :-) In fact he's watching the SEC tournament right now as I type this :-)

    Thank you for your faithfulness to our Lord! Our prayers are with you and your ministry in Honduras!

    In Him,

    Jessica Fannin
    Bluegrass Baptist Church, Georgetown KY

  5. Kimberly Henderson Grainger Says:

    You guys have soo much wisdom and maturity. It's a blessing to see how you share your hearts, struggle, and all God's many works in this blog. Only eternity can tell how many people are frequently challenged and encouraged by your time investment and transparency.
    You go, girl!
    Missing you,

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