Introducing Justina Thomas

Iam excited to be joining the team to reach the Palawano tribe in the Philippines with the good news of Jesus!

My journey to missions started early. When I was a child, I listened as my mother read the old mission stories. I also had close relatives who were involved in mission work.

After I gave my heart to God at age 14, I felt Him calling me to be a missionary. When I spoke about this to people, they laughed because I was a very shy girl and easily frightened. They would ask me where I was going on my mission. I had no idea. My brother’s girlfriend was going as a student missionary to China that year, so I fixed my heart on China and told everyone that I would go there. I was serious. I even learned how to eat with chopsticks so that I would be more prepared when it was time to go.

At age 17 I lived in Guyana, South America for a year helping at a secondary school. This student-missionary experience was life-changing. I knew this was what I wanted to do with my life. I also spent a year in India to learn midwifery.

After nursing school, I decided to work for a year and then see about mission service. My family encouraged me to start talking with mission organizations, so I applied to several. AFM called me the next day. They needed a nurse to go to Palawan to cover the clinic while Carrie Hann was in the States transitioning to career-missionary service. That was a Wednesday, and AFM asked me to come to training the following Sunday. I said, “Okay, God!” and went.

Now I am transitioning to career-missionary status with the Palawano Project. I’m excited to be continuing to work in the clinic. We have been very busy. Carrie and I see anywhere from one to 60 patients a day. One of my special projects is the birthing center. We have a new building now and are starting to get more mothers coming to us for their deliveries. In this last school year we have had eight births at the clinic. Midwifery is a great opening wedge for the gospel, because when you have been with a mother and helped her through labor, you have a special bond. I want to use this to help make more friends and have more opportunities to share Jesus with them.

I really love working with God at the clinic. I have seen amazing answers to prayer: people healed from demon possession, oxygen tanks that ran past empty, and people healed who seemed certain to die.

I love seeing God work in the lives of people, like the girl who said that she didn’t have to be afraid of ghosts anymore because now she knows what they really are.

“May God be gracious to us and bless us and make his face shine on us—so that your ways may be known on earth, your salvation among all nations” (Ps. 67:1-2).

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