people working on laptop
picture by Lennard Prediger

Melanie spent years praying and preparing while she waited to move overseas. Having moved to the Caucasus region in 2023, she can see how everything happened in God's timing.

When God has a plan for your life, He will fulfil it, even if it takes many years. Melanie* (USA) discovered the truth of this when she joined the OM team in the Caucasus region after spending a decade being prepared for the role.

From an early age Melanie wanted to be in missions, but for a long time it seemed her dream would not be realised. After graduating from college, she was ready to move overseas, but God redirected her to work in journalism, studying archaeology.

“I had the idea of turning it into a tentmaking skill and using it for missions,” she said. “I always envisioned myself in the Middle East. I worked in archaeology magazines for 10 years and visited excavations during the summers. But I was praying about still wanting to go overseas.

“But then while I was working, doors started closing. I was trying to buy a house and it fell through. A couple relationships ended abruptly. I was asking God, ‘What’s going on? You wanted me here, but You won’t let me put down roots.’”

God prepared the way

In 2019, God placed a specific country on Melanie’s heart, and she started to research the country and what organisations worked there. “I eventually met the OM Caucasus team, and they shared some of their vision, which lined up with my heart’s desires,” she said.

“The team also shared they were looking for someone with communications experience, and in particular, because they were seeing a mini revival with many former Muslims coming to faith in Jesus, they wanted someone with storytelling experience who could collect these testimonties and share them with the world, and that was the exact skill set God had developed in me while I was waiting.

“Everything was right — the right country, the right time, a very specific role that seemed like a perfect fit. It was really clear when God revealed His plan because it wasn’t what I was expecting, but it seemed custom-made.”

Prompted by dreams

During her years of waiting, Melanie found herself spending a lot of time in prayer, asking God what His plan was for her. In February 2022 Melanie felt a prompting by the Holy Spirit to pray and ask God to fulfil everything He had promised within one year. “So I was looking at 2023 very expectantly and excitedly,” she said.  

She made enquiries about joining another mission organisation, but the timing and other factors were not right. She said, "I wouldn’t have been able to join that team until 2025, which seemed too long, especially after already waiting for years. After that, I was so sad and crying before the Lord, just pouring tears on the feet of Jesus and asking Him to open doors for me to obey the calling He had given me.”

In reply, Melanie received a dream in which she was at a training conference, and everyone was sharing their giftings. “Everyone said ‘service,’ but I didn’t want to say that,” she recalled. “Then the leaders said: ‘It’s too bad that everyone said service. We have an exciting new opportunity coming up for stewardship.’ When they said ‘stewardship,’ I remember thinking that was my gifting! The dream gave me a lot of encouragement because I knew it was from the Lord and that there was something new on the horizon that hadn’t existed before that would be matched up to my practical gifting.”

In February 2023 — exactly a year after asking God to fulfil all of His promises — Melanie had the chance to go to Azerbaijan and Georgia, and it was during that trip she met some of the people who work with OM in the Caucasus region.

Ready to go

Melanie has been in her role for several months now and, while she is still discovering new things about the culture, she knows she is in the right place.

She said, “When I got here, I thought I would have two weeks to settle in, and I got two days! So I  immediately started working on projects. Because God called me here in 2019 but I didn’t go until 2023, I had four years of waiting. By the time I arrived, I was very ready to jump in, and I definitely have the right skill set to help.  

“This is the specific role that God has placed me in, and it has been confirmed many times over.”

Please pray for the unity, perseverance, and health of Melanie’s team members. God is doing amazing things in the Caucasus. There is urgency and excitement every day, but there is also the potential for burnout.

Pray for more workers, both local and international, to join OM in the Caucasus field. The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few.

*name changed

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