There are some moments in life that can only be defined by freedom. Long before I knew Christ, a conversation with a friend in late elementary school changed the trajectory of my life. In viewing my outlandish behavior, my friend Glenda said bluntly, “I don’t think this is really who you are. I don’t think you are truly like this.” While we were just children at the time, her discernment rocked me to the core. Her jack-hammer words and consistent friendship that year created in me a hunger for a missing piece of my identity. While we ultimately had to go separate ways for middle school the following year, her friendship marked my life. The love she had for me inspired me to learn Spanish, to honor her Mexican heritage.
Drawn by her love for me, I studied Spanish for another 7.5 years, throughout middle school, high school, and college. Throughout those years, I struggled with depression and was very hungry to know if I could trust God. My mom had taken us to church occasionally for a few years, but I struggled there. I had many questions about God, but couldn’t find any others who were hungry. While I knew nothing about supernatural ministry at the time, I intuitively felt that if God were real, he would have the capacity to radically heal my mind. As I started college, I was led by my hunger to a priest who spoke to a large university audience about his profession as a deliverance minister. All at once, I began to realize there may be legitimate answers to my questions.
As I was in the process of deciding where I would study abroad to grow my Spanish, I felt a hunger for Jesus begin to pull me like a fish on a hook. I made a spreadsheet, weighed my options, and went with “my intuition” to select a program in Valparaiso, Chile. Little did I know, this program was one of very few that ran a Christian study abroad option. As I boarded the plane with my backpack and suitcase, I said to the Lord, “Jesus, if you’re real, I’m ready to know.” Several months later, I found the Answer to my questions, got radically saved and delivered from depression, had various supernatural encounters, and experienced a strong sense of adoption both to Lord and to the land. Believe it or not, that semester I was even voted “Most likely to be adopted by their Host Family” by my study abroad program.
In November 2021, I was in Glasgow, Scotland for a training in prophetic ministry with the Global Prophetic Alliance. Emma Stark and another leader prophesied over me, and acknowledged that I have a mass deliverance calling for Latin America. God has given me a fire, passion, and determination for the Latin American people that responds to the decisions I’ve made since my return to the United States. After graduating university, I came to Washington, DC where I have worked daily as a teacher with Central American children and their families (especially Salvadorans, Guatemalans, Hondurans, Venezuelans, and Mexicans). Eighteen months ago, during the early days of the pandemic, God used my hunger for bilingualism to draw me to work at Sacred Heart Bilingual Catholic school. At Sacred Heart, I have been focusing on using technology to share the beauty of Jesus and impart a greater hunger for the Holy Spirit to my third and fourth grade students. You can check out some of the projects we’ve done with the Holy Spirit here.
In the following months, I hope to return to Latin America in order to develop friendships that will strengthen the foundation for my continued work within the continent. Beyond just feeling called by the land, I hope that in the years to come, I can make a return on the abundance of love I’ve been shown through the people of Latin America.