{Janet} What is a Missionary? pt. 1

Introducing…Janet! Janet is a dear friend of mine who has moved to Germany to make a home and show God’s love to the people in a small town called Meissen. She is also my first guest blogger. And this is her first guest blog. hee!

Enter Janet:

_MG_3082Before you read on, I want you to know two things:
1. Missions go very deep into the core of who I am.
2. I would be one of the very worst missionaries out there if I had to live up to what I grew up believing a missionary was.

For as long as I can remember I have heard about, listened to, and been around honest to goodness living, breathing, adventurous missionaries.

They came to my home church and told us of their tales, sent letters and personal notes, stayed in our home, ate meals with us. Our church supported and took care of these missionaries. I guess you could say that had a big impact on my already imaginative young mind and in many ways shaped my thinking.

As I grew up, those thoughts of what I viewed as missionary work didn’t change much. To me a missionary was someone who went and lived in the wilds of Africa, Cambodia or perhaps India or China. Those people were daring and bold in their faith, risking life and limb to show people who Jesus is and that he is real. THAT was a Missionary!

After working a mainstream job in the medical field for several years in South Dakota and Minnesota, I decided to do what I really wanted to do. I did a whole lot of praying and sought council from people I trusted and then made the plunge: I was going to finally be a Missionary.

So, at the bright age of 32 I set off with a missions organization; not really knowing what I was doing, but “doing the stuff.” It lead me to some very interesting places, and it slowly changed my view of what a missionary is.

I moved to Germany two years ago to work with the same missions organization I had been doing short term stuff with for a few years. They were starting a new base and needed help. I learned to speak German and learned more about the German culture. This was it!

But God had other plans for me, more things to teach me.

I have since left the mission organization I was with in Germany. I still live in Germany and work in the health care field again, this time in Elder Care. I am no longer a “Missionary” by the standard definition.

What I have discovered is the standard definition doesn’t cover all there is to being a missionary.

Before I tell you what I learned (next week), what do you think a missionary is?