Continuing the “her story/His glory” introduction blogs, I’d like to introduce you to one of our newest interns, Joanne. One word that comes to mind when I think about Joanne’s adventure (and it WAS certainly an adventure) to serve at Vision of Hope is “sacrificial.” Another is “unique.” Her travels southward were sacrificial and unique in many ways, one of which is simply distance: Joanne travelled from her hometown in Canada, to our home turf in Lafayette. Not only did she sacrifice in distance, she also sacrificed in comfort: making her journey just prior to the epic “snowpocalypse” that left several in our community without power! It was unique in and sacrificial at the border, where Joanne spent an hour convincing patrol agents that yes, she really was going to volunteer for a year in America; she had no alternate agenda! After making at past patrol, Joanne arrived only to be snowed in. Of course, this didn’t stop Joanne from starting to serve the moment she arrived. I guess it just goes to show that God doesn’t let rain or snow stop His purposes for our lives!
I asked Joanne a few questions to try and get to know her and what she’s hoping her year with Vision of Hope will teach her. Here’s a look at her answers:
1) What about the Vision of Hope internship are you most looking forward to?
I had the opportunity to go to the 2013 BCTC and be challenged by the truly biblical counselling that was taught and explained (which was fabulous, even in my own life!). I can’t wait to see the Biblical Counseling put it into practice and played out on a daily basis as I interact with the residents. I’m also really looking forward to living with the other interns — university was such a great experience for me because of the strong Christian roommates and the mutual accountability I experienced.
2) Do you have any expectations?
To be honest… other than expecting it to be an emotionally and spiritually challenging year… and expecting that I will not have all the answers… not really!
3) What are you praying for (internship wise)?
There are probably many areas in my life that God has been wanting to smooth out to make me more like Christ … so I’m praying that I will be humble enough to see them identified and let the Holy Spirit work in and through my life. I’m praying for wisdom in my interactions with the residents – to know how to encourage them in what they are learning in their counseling, but also to know when and how to lovingly challenge and guide them in the hard moments. Also, I’m praying for wisdom and guidance in how to be able to use what I will learn and experience back at home after the internship.
4) Do you have any goals for your internship?
Goal #1 – Journal what I’m being taught, journal the areas I’m being challenged in, journal the prayers answered. Journal, journal, journal. (I’ve never been a consistent journal writer…)
Goal #2 – Attend Monday’s basic training – and be able to effectively use the Bible in discipleship and counseling settings
Goal #3 – Remember that I will make mistakes.
Goal #4 – Laugh every day.
5) Do you have any fears coming to the internship?
My fears are closely knit to what I’m praying about – coincidence? I think not! I’m nervous about the areas in my life that God wants to smooth out – being humbled is rarely easy! I’m nervous about how God will want me to use this practical knowledge that I will gain after the internship. Walking alongside someone struggling when you aren’t perfect yourself can get pretty messy and be very challenging.
As I leave Vision of Hope and sort of “pass off the baton” to our new interns (Joanne being one of them) I can’t wait to see how God uses their prayers, fears, and weaknesses to display His glorious strength and sovereign care. If you see Timea, Joanne, of Dezaree at Faith Church in the next few months, say hello! Ask them what God is teaching them. Ask Joanne how her journaling is going! I’m SO excited for what God is going to do at VOH this year!