I chose to come to Australia to serve as a volunteer to gain experience working in a different environment and in a different culture. I was a student at Spicer Memorial College in India for the past five and a half years. I then flew home to Kenya for two months before departing for Australia. It was not easy for me and my family to part company again after a gap of many years. Visa processing took a long time. I thought that I wouldn't make it and my dreams would be shattered. But God worked it out for me and I thank Him for that.
The first concern was that I would be so lonely and it would be tough for me in a new environment. To my utter surprise, my entry experience was the complete opposite scenario of what I had conceived in my mind. The Australian people are lovely and above all, are people who have God in their hearts. They made me feel comfortable and I have never felt an ounce of homesickness. I thank God.
I mainly assist in the dorm (Lilydale Adventist Academy) with the boarding students with whom we live and sometimes it feels like a big extended family. We prepare breakfast and lunch by 7:00 am. I take worship every evening for the kids and supervise their study. It's interesting to work with the kids and with the deans Donny and Bruce Wareham. When kids come from school we go out to play with them. I have seen God's leading in all this and the kids love to learn about God as their Saviour. We had a chaplaincy meeting once and I am yet to get involved with the campus ministries program.
In the short time I have been here, I have gained a lot in reading spiritual books when the kids are in school. I also shared my testimony with some of the kids about my Christian walk and this is a challenge too.
I pray for all the other volunteers all over that they may faithfully do the work God has put in their hands, for plenty is the harvest but few are the reapers. Remember too that Christ has not promised an easy life in His work but He will be faithful in everything we do for Him. If we get over the hurdles of volunteer work, He will take charge of it all. I wish you all God's blessings.
In His Service, Gladys Kerubo Ragira, Lilydale Adventist Academy, Australia.