We all have words or quotes or verses that shake us and stir something so deep within us. I still remember reading one that would shape the way I saw people and the way I saw the work God was doing in the lives of those around me–both strangers and friends.
“There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside of you.”
Maya Angelou, an author, a poet, a Civil Rights activist, and a devote follower of Jesus said those words. I remember allowing this profound thought settle into my spirit. “There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside of you.”
We all have stories. We are marked by experiences and people, some good and some challenging. We are beings that are carved by story, by the things that happen to us, by the things we do as a response to the things that happen to us. God has so uniquely weaved each of our stories together, writing them day after day after day. These stories–our stories, your story, my story, the story God is writing bit by bit–are the things that get me up in the morning, that sustain me on the difficult days. When I went to school for writing, I thought I would pursue a career in fiction, but it didn’t take long for the Lord to show me the beauty of the real, raw, beautiful stories of the people around me, His people.
For the last two and a half years, God has continued to refine this passion and develop my writing at Nappanee Missionary Church. I’ve watched how God has used the gift of words to bring redemption and healing and wholeness to people as they tell their story. I have truly been humbled and honored to be welcomed into people’s stories and trusted to tell them as best as I can.
And now, God is asking me to journey a bit deeper, trusting Him to use my gifts in new places, with new people, in a new culture.
I’m excited to say that I will be joining Outpour Movement in Mae Sot, Thailand, in August 2018 to help communicate the vision, mission, purpose of this ministry as well as to tell the stories of Jesus’ transformational work on Thailand/Burma border. Outpour Movement “exists to transform, disciple, train, and empower the youth and young adults of oppressed people groups who transcend the Thai and Burma border.” You may have heard of the atrocities committed by the Burmese government. Although many news outlets are just picking up these stories, they have been happening for generations, leaving people displaced from their homes in poverty and without hope. Through job opportunities and training, life-skills training, and discipleship, Outpour Movement offers hope that can only be found in Jesus. I’m incredibly excited to join in the mission and vision of this organization and do my part in building God’s kingdom in a place where hope can be a scarce commodity.
But to do this, I need your help. God has laid a couple of specific projects on my team’s heart, and because of the nature of the writing process, it’s hard to gauge exactly how long I will be in Mae Sot. My heart’s desire is to stay in Mae Sot until the vision is completed or until God calls me somewhere else. As of now, I am fundraising for three months as I will be headed in with a three-month visa. After that expires, I plan to return to the States to raise funds for the next several months. My financial goal for these first 3 months is $6,000, and anything that I raise other than that will go toward the full length of time the Lord has in mind. This money will cover daily living (housing, utilities, insurance, etc.) as well as several one-time costs including airfare, transportation, retreat travel and expenses, and visa costs.
Although this is a big step for me, I am fully confident that when God calls, He provides. So, I am choosing to trust in His promises, leaning fully on Him.
As I prepare to take these steps, I’d love to invite you to join my team, partnering with me to tell the stories of the transformation that only happens through Jesus. Here are a few ways you can do that:
I need prayer warriors. Now more than ever, I am so very aware of my desperate need for intercessors. I need you at home to pray faithfully, because I cannot do this on my own. The Lord has reminded me time and again that I am only able to live in the calling He has placed on my life when I am in complete dependence on Him. Will you be my prayer warrior, going to the Father on my behalf?
This financial goal is no small task, but I know the Lord will be faithful. If you would like to partner with me financially, you can give a one-time or monthly gift through Nappanee Missionary Church. You can give online here(designate your gift as Kate Berkey under “Missionary Support”) or you can mail a check (made out to Nappanee Missionary Church) to PO Box 110, Nappanee IN, 46550.
The best kind of team stays up to date on what God is doing, and I would love for you to come along with me on this journey. If you would like to receive updates on what God is doing and how you can continue to pray, shoot me a message here. You can also follow my blog.
I am incredibly humbled and grateful for the opportunities God has put before me. And I’m also so grateful for the chance to share my heart with you all. Let’s go on this journey together.