As long as I’ve known my friend, Katie, she’s been serving others. It was never a question of if she was going to serve, only when and where.
For people like Katie, serving isn’t an obligation but a way of life. It hasn’t always easy, but I know if you asked her she would always say it has always been worth it. Some of the ways she’s served could be considered small, like helping friends move or offering advice. Others would be considered larger, like leading mission trips or mentoring teenage girls. But this time she’s really outdone herself–she’s decided to move to Bolivia for a year. I didn’t say Birmingham; I said Bo-liv-ia.
After a lot of prayer, counsel and consideration over the last few months, Katie’s decided to teach in a Christian school in Santa Cruz, Bolivia. The decision didn’t come lightly, and it does come with a lot of cost to her. Not only does it mean leaving her friends, family and job in the US, but it means raising her own support. The price tag for one year comes in at around $27,000 to cover wages, insurance, living expenses, travel to/from the US and everything in between. Now before you balk at that figure, know that Katie is confident that God is bigger than that number, and more importantly, is calling her to this cause.
If you asked Katie’s friends, it would only take them a matter of seconds to tell you about a time she’s served them personally or served alongside them. It’s just who she is. And she’s asked for very little in return. Now it’s our turn to reciprocate. It’s our privilege. It’s our opportunity to join her in God’s bigger story for her life, and in that way, expand our own.
I hope you’ll join me in praying for Katie over this next year. She’ll need to know that the folks back home are thinking of her, missing her and sending good thoughts her way. And she needs to know people are rooting for her. The other obvious thing she needs are donations. When you hear $27,000 you may be tempted to sit back and do nothing because you can’t give very much. Don’t let that stop you. If everyone gives a little, it adds up to a lot. It will take all of us to get Katie to Bolivia. It’s a call to faith for us all in that way. And when she hits that mark and gets on that plane, don’t you want to smile knowing that you had a hand in getting her there?
You can give one-time or through a monthly withdrawal. Here are a few examples to make the number a little more bite-sized for the latter:
- $5/month = one Grande Skinny Vanilla latte from Starbucks or a Moo Moo Mr. Cow from Moe’s (My favs.)
- $10/month = one movie (There are really only a few good ones on deck right now anyway.)
- $20/month = one sack of the groceries you don’t need but buy anyway (Stick to the list. Avoid impulse.)
- $30/month = renegotiate a bill or other reoccurring charge (Moving the already budgeted money around won’t hurt.)
- $40/month = one nice meal out with a friend (Note: start cooking more and invite friend over.)
- $50/month = a combination of the above (Guilty as charged.)
See, that’s not so bad? Sure, it’s a sacrifice, but what great things aren’t? Just take a look to see what amount works for you, and make the decision to give. These aren’t the kind of financial decisions we regret, but the ones we can be most proud of. Please consider joining Katie in this new chapter of her life. Help her love on the people there as she’s loved on the people here. Give her the resources she needs to follow God down this unknown and exciting road. Allow a whole other country the opportunity to experience the amazing Katie J.
For Katie, serving was never an if, only a question of when and where. Well, the time is now and the place is Bolivia.
To read more about Katie’s adventure, check out her blog.