In just a few short weeks, my husband, Sam, and I will be moving our family to Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, to serve as the Work & Witness coordinators for the country. While this is our first full-time ministry position, we have always been “missionaries,” and we wholeheartedly believe that if you claim Jesus as your Lord and Savior, then you are, too!
In 2014, we had the opportunity to help launch a campus in a new community with our church, Crossbridge Community Church of the Nazarene. This started us on a journey of becoming intentional in building relationships with others. We even sold our family home out in the country to move into town so that we could be closer to others and build relationships with those who needed Jesus.
My husband became part-owner of a local business, which gave him a lot of opportunities to serve and connect with others. I joined the staff at our church as our lead pastor’s assistant, which allowed me the opportunity to serve those inside and outside the church. We were both growing deeper in our relationship with the Lord as well as building meaningful relationships with our new neighbors and friends.
In 2018, our head pastor asked me to coordinate a new partnership between our church and missionaries serving in the Dominican Republic. Both Sam and I were excited for this opportunity because we have always loved missions and sharing that experience with others. We had talked about doing more mission work when Sam retired but had not considered that God might have a different timeline in mind.
We were so content where God had us . . . we never even considered that He might call us to actually move to another country!
In early 2019, that contentment started to shift. Nothing on the exterior really changed—it was a slow and steady internal shift that was happening in both me and my husband. After some serious prayer and discussion with mentors, we decided that we would explore the possibility of serving cross-culturally, but it wasn’t long until we were willing to say yes to whatever God was calling us to do. In November of 2019, we attended an Explore event at Olivet Nazarene University and walked away with confirmation that we were to serve as full-time missionaries.
The journey has not always been easy and has been full of many unknowns, but it has been such a joy to follow the Lord’s calling on ordinary people like us to share Him with others. Our prayer is that you will also become “like a city on a hilltop that cannot be hidden” (Matthew 5:14) so others can experience the grace and forgiveness of God.
Kristi Senica and her husband, Sam, serve in leadership at Crossbridge Community Church of the Nazarene in Ottawa, IL. Together, they have four children.