Well, it’s Missions Monday. Today, I am featuring one of my favorite missionaries. She is an inspiration to me, and she also happens to be my mom – Toby. She doesn’t let things like her age or being a woman stop her from doing great things for the Lord. She was in her 40’s when she started traveling, and now in her 70’s she is still going.
Toby saw a great need in women’s ministry to address the issue of abuse in all areas. In 1994 (at the age of 52), she had a vision of a ministry for women that would reach beyond the comfort of home to the foreign field. In 1995, Called to Excellence (CTE) Ministries was officially launched in her living room with five ladies and a Bible study. In 1997, CTE was incorporated as a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization. The Jamaican government in 1999 invited Toby to register CTE as a welcomed guest of the island.
Wanting to further her studies of God’s Word, Toby enrolled in Shalom Bible College and Seminary of Des Moines, Iowa in 2003. (She was 62 years young) She received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Divinity Studies the following year. She is credentialed through Shalom and is licensed through the State of Ohio as a practicing minister.
Although her foreign mission focus is in Jamaica, Toby has had the privilege to take her ministry to such countries as Barbados, Mexico, Venezuela, Peru, Honduras, India, China, Hong Kong, Cambodia, Vietnam, Haiti, and Ethiopia. To date, Toby has made over 80 foreign trips to these countries, spreading God’s Message of love, healing, and salvation through His Son Jesus Christ.
I remember her expressing concern about me running alone where there could be cougars or bears. That was funny coming from a woman who jumped off a moving train, got hit by a taxi, and bit by a camel all in the same day while traveling in India. I was just following her example of a woman who knows no fear except for the fear of the Lord.
Do you think you are too old for God to use you to bring hope to hurting people? I hope learning about Toby will make you think again. To learn more about Called To Excellence Ministries, visit her website at http://www.cteministries.net/.