During the last few weeks of the past semester, I grew discouraged asking God questions like: “Why am I not enjoying this as much as I think I should be?” “Why am I not having fun with my sisters?” “Why don’t I feel the same joy here that I felt in Mexico?” During our retreat in Thailand in January, I wrestled with these questions a lot as we heard messages on loving our friends with a father’s heart and raising up the next generation of believers. I became increasingly aware that something in me was missing. Those questions soon turned into prayers, “God, give me a greater heart for the people here.” “Help me to love my sisters more.” “Give me someone to invest in that I enjoy and who is ‘good soil.'”

After returning from Thailand, I went to visit my friend Joy for a few days at her home about an hour outside of C-Town. I didn’t quite know what to expect, but what I experienced was far beyond that which I had hoped.

Joy, and my experience with her, were the answers to what I had been asking God for. The trip started with me giving Joy the Bible. I have never seen someone so hungry for the Bread of Life. She immediately opened it and sat in her living room reading it, surrounded by her extended family playing games. We spent the next day with her parents and a friend from high school. As we were sitting drinking tea and playing cards, Joy initiated sharing the Gospel with them. Then the following day as we were showing another friend a card trick I had taught her, she initiated sharing with him, too. This time, he chose to believe and Joy was able to teach BinBin how to talk to God and be His friend!

Seeing her heart to share and learn more about God was so encouraging for me. But maybe even more encouraging for me was the fact that something was different in me… God had begun shifting my heart and answering my prayers.