On Tuesday, we shared a lunch table with people from 6 different countries. Last week, we did bible study in a group of 50 people that represented India, Kazakhstan, Thailand, Kenya, Turkey, Costa Rica, Spain, Colombia, Panama, Brazil, Liberia, and more. We introduced our awesome leadership team in Spain to our TMS Global peers. Our Spain team is multinational / multicultural (Puerto Ricans, Texans ☺, Spaniards) and multigenerational (30s– 60s) with varied career backgrounds (a teacher, a pharmaceutical rep, a horticulturalist, an economist with a law degree, an author, a pastor, a former monk, and more). As I think on this, I realize just how diverse my life and my world has become!
This diversity is sometimes tough to navigate, but it has the potential to bring such beautiful benefits to everyone who engages and connects! In connecting and building relationships with so many different people, we have the incredible benefit of getting a glimpse of what The Kingdom of God is really about. We are also helping others make connections. By introducing our Spain team to our TMS Global team, we helped connect the Spanish church and leaders to resources and a world of possibilities that they never dreamed possible. We helped to connect them to a whole new world of stories and people that they never would have known otherwise. They are now thinking ‘outside the box’ and looking at a bigger picture than they were seeing a week ago. They have now sat at the table and listened to the stories of their Christian brothers and sisters who are serving in other parts of the world. They are now connected to the son of a tribal chief in Africa who lost his son to Ebola last year. They are connected to a young pastor in Kazakhstan who is forbidden to have a church or preach, so he opened a sports center and connects to people via soccer and gym time. They had conversations with a Brazilian pastor and were able to ask him about the best ways to connect to our Brazilian immigrants here in Spain. And they were able to begin conversations about how to receive more training and help, and how to bring in trainers who can build up the pastors and churches here in Spain and mobilize people here for outreach and service.
Thank you for connecting with us so that we can connect others, so that we can help others partner with the right people and the right resources to grow in The Kingdom!
In my USA life, I was a teacher in Texas for 15 years. I was also a professional photographer, a soccer mom, a horsewoman, and the neighborhood hospitality queen. I did "Joanna Gaines farmhouse style" before Chip and JoJo were even a thing - we restored an 1884 Victorian farmhouse in small town Texas and did shiplap walls until I thought I'd go crazy. I taught at NASA, scuba dived with astronauts in training, and studied animals at Sea World for educational purposes. I've tried just about everything, because I have an insatiable need to know if I can do it! Never underestimate a Texas girl in cowboy boots!
In 2006, my husband Billy and I became cross-cultural workers (CCWs) with TMS Global. For five years, we served in three rural Quechua Wanca villages in the Andes of Peru. And when I say rural, I mean RURAL - like no potty! I spent my days in Peru learning to live a Quechua lifestyle in a rustic adobe house - cooking Peruvian foods, sewing with Quechua women, raising my chickens and goats and pigs, and planting my gardens. Now I live my life in small town Spain, serving other cross-cultural workers via teaching and training and care, and helping displaced people to navigate their new reality in Europe.
I'm passionate about fostering personal growth, growth in community, and growth in The Kingdom. Walking alongside others and helping them to use their unique design, their gifts and strengths and maximize their abilities to fulfill their God-given purpose - that's what makes my heart sing!