Upon first arriving to the mission field, one is overwhelmed with a myriad of emotions and expectations. Looking through somewhat rose-tinted lens, everything seems so grandiose, adventurous, and idealistic, but after the novelty wears off and the original excitement and newness wanes, one is confronted with a different reality. Struggles are real, heartbreak is inevitable, and to be quite honest, things can get downright hard, and even ugly. It is in those moments one asks, “What am I really doing here?” and “Why am I doing this?”
As I look back upon the 20 years I have spent on the mission field in Honduras, the ups and downs, the good times and the struggles, I reflect upon what it is that has kept me here and what motivates me to continue. There are many things that transpire while serving on the field that may bring about doubts, frustrations, and even a desire to pack up and leave, but it is in that instant one must dig deep and reflect. My personal response to that emotional confrontation can be summed in three words:
Calling is the assurance in knowing God has set before me a special mission and purpose to fulfill. With that knowledge comes the confidence that if it is God who has called me, then He too will be the one who provides all that is necessary to accomplish the journey that lies before me.
The call to serve as a missionary is an honor, yet a deep and serious commitment to both God and the people we serve. It is the desire to not let either of them down that is a motivation to push through the uncomfortable and difficult times.
There is a passion for seeing souls reached, and individuals and communities changed. It is an intense longing to make a difference in the lives of others and an eternal investment into the kingdom. This unexplainable longing that is birthed deep within is a continual push to persevere even in the most challenging times.
True missions is not glamorous, it’s not always fun, nor exciting. Most of the time, it is a challenge—dirty and confrontational. At the same time, it is the most beautiful, rewarding, and life-changing experience, for which I am so grateful God has called me and kept me thus far.
– Angie Altamirano