What is your calling? Do you believe in a higher purpose? In life we all have the option of free will and to do what feels right to us. How will you choose to make a difference?

9-14-16emilybeingcalledtomissionsPhoto by Erin Roach


“Finally ready now to close my eyes and just believe that you won’t lead me where you don’t go.”

These are the words of the Bethel song that seem to echo through my mind most of the time now.

Words that remind me that God does not lead where he doesn’t go.

Words that remind me I’m not alone.

It all began my freshman year with a documentary on Netflix.

I was going through a phase of watching solely documentaries on Netflix in an attempt to become more “cultured” when I stumbled upon a film titled, “Mother India.”

The film followed a group of orphans in India who lived in the streets, some by choice and others because the orphanages were too overrun with children in need to offer them love and care.

I was captivated.

My eyes filled with tears as I heard the heart-wrenching stories of each orphan.

Many were addicted to drugs and many were diagnosed with AIDS before they had even delved into their teen-age years.

Of the 31 million orphans in India, many would die on the streets, hurting and alone.

Each one of those hurting hearts needed love. Each one needed just one person who genuinely cared.

As I sat in my dorm room alone I heard the calling.

I heard, “Go.”

I had been on mission trips and I had seen poverty and hurt but I was crippled by the belief that God would not use me.

But in that moment, as I saw those sorrow-filled eyes staring at me through my screen, I felt God nudging me to dream bigger.

I knew God wanted to use, yes, even little me.

So I said yes. I said yes to dreaming bigger and allowing God to orchestrate a great adventure, and it was terrifying.

I had no ideas where this adventure would take me, I just knew I had to help children like the ones I saw.

This idea still seems overwhelming at times. It all seems so much bigger than me, simply because it is bigger than me.

I am not courageous, strong or qualified, but I am willing. I am striving to be surrendered and that is all God asks for. He will take care of the rest.

While knowing this, I would still be lying to say that I look toward the future with only excitement to explore what God has planned for my life because most often the excitement is riddled with anxieties.

If I was choosing my way I would choose a steady job. I would choose a house in the United States in a safe neighborhood.

I would choose comfort.

But, I’m learning each day that comfort doesn’t always mean joy.

In fact, rarely does joy come when we are stuck in our comfort zone.

Joy comes when we live in obedience to God and allow him to destroy our comfort zone and lead us into the unknown, whatever that unknown may look like.

It’s a beautiful trust and my heart’s desire is to live in that.

In a book I read called “Kisses From Katie,” Katie, a missionary to orphans in Uganda, describes God shattering her comfortable plan.

“Jesus wrecked my life, shattered it to pieces, and put it back together more beautifully.”

That’s what “go” felt like.

It was God taking a baseball bat to what seemed to be my perfectly built plan and putting his actual perfect plan in its place.

He is day by day putting my life together more beautifully.

Most days this feels overwhelming and I often see the need in our world and try to break out into a dead sprint in the other direction.

The spring semester of my sophomore year of college was one of these moments.

I remember having a conversation with a close friend and telling them “this whole dream is crazy.”

In that moment I was verbalizing what had been running through my mind for weeks, a crippling feeling of doubt.

Doubt that God would use me to help the millions of orphans in the world.

Doubt that this was simply my search for adventure and not what God truly wanted in my life.

Because, why would God use a 20-something girl from the Midwest to love children across the world?


Photo by Savannah Squires

]In those moments the dream implanted in my heart by a good God did seem crazy and honestly it seemed easier to stay.

So, I almost gave up my dream. I almost said never mind to my original answer of yes.

This looked like me looking at jobs that would be stable and walking toward other career paths that would take me away from this adventure and into comfort and security.

In this moment of running I felt torn between picking up the pieces of my plan that had been previously destroyed and surrendering to the new plan God was leading me into.

In the pinnacle of this feeling, God spoke to me in two significant ways.

The first was in the ending of a relationship.

This was painful, yet beautiful. We both knew the path I was supposed to be walking and that it would not synchronize.

I knew this was just one more thing causing me to want to run and God, in  love, was taking away the excuses. God was not allowing this to hold me back.

The second time I heard God nudging me back to his plan was in my Basic Reporting and Writing for Journalism class. Yes, in class. Honestly the last place I expected him to speak.

I walked in that day, tired and with no peace only to hear a story about orphans in China who were left to die because they were uncared for, unloved.

A discussion following the story began and I remember, clear as day, raising my hand to speak.

I said, holding back tears, that someone had to speak up for the most forgotten members of our world. Someone had to plead for those who could not plead for themselves.

Someone had to go. In that moment, God broke me and I again said yes.

Yes, the journey to saying yes is difficult and often comes hand in hand with loss and new surrender.

However, in each case that I attempt to run from his plan, God, in his love, brings me back each and every time.

He brings me back to the need of 140 million orphans worldwide.

He brings me back to the importance of loving even just one of those orphans.

He brings me back to the reality that I was once an orphan spiritually and he came, giving up Heaven, to extend his love to me.

So, through his power, I too can go.

I can go because God has equipped me to love and show the world his son. One person at a time.

One orphan at a time.

Katie Davis stated it perfectly when she said, “I have learned that I will not change the world, Jesus will do that. I can however, change the world for one person. I can change the world for fourteen little girls and for four hundred schoolchildren and for a sick and dying grandmother and for a malnourished, neglected, abused five-year old. And if one person sees the love of Christ in me, it is worth every minute. In fact, it is worth spending my life for.”

I truly feel that this calling is worth spending my life for.

I do not know yet what this call worth spending my life for looks like exactly, God continues to reveal that as he gives me the strength to trust him.

I hope one day to open an orphanage overseas to provide children in need with a place to call home, a place to feel the love of Christ.

Many questions surround this dream. Where will this be? When will this plan unfold? How will this dream become reality?

But, in all of the chaos, questions and fear surrounding this unknown adventure, God gives me a quiet calm.

A whisper that I am never forsaken.

He does not say go alone.

He says go and I will be with you.

I cannot imagine a more beautiful adventure than this.

By Emily Morton

Emily Morton is a staff journalist for MBU Timeline, majoring in public relations. She has helped run Spartan Wall and worked in the Special Events Department. She is originally from St. Louis. Morton enjoys photography, traveling, design and hopes one day to form a nonprofit that works with orphans outside of the United States.