To all of you reading, this is what I would call a “letter from the other side.” I’ve been back home in the States for just over a month now after having served as a missionary in Auckland, New Zealand for just shy of a year. I’ve never had much patience for letting the grass grow beneath my feet, so naturally I hit the ground running doing job applications, playing/attending weddings, home reorganizing, moving, gardening, and visiting family and friends as best I can. In perhaps a not-so-shocking turn of events, it took me a bit longer to process my time in the mission field in between all this running around like a chicken with my head chopped off. However, below you will find my reflections as best I’ve come to understand them. 
I loved my time in New Zealand. The country is gorgeous, the people are down to earth, and the coffee is undeniable. It was not at all what I would’ve expected out of my time there, but it was better suited to my skill sets and areas needing growth than I wou…

Rearview Mirror

As of today, I am two weeks away from departure, providing flights don't get cancelled and unforetold circumstances do not strike. That's quite a mouthful. For as long as I can remember, the only proviso to take into consideration was money, but even money isn't as powerful as it once was. Until this point, I'd been fairly pleased with the reality check of God's might, so my next statement is very literal. God willing and providing, I return home in two weeks. This blog post will hopefully tie a nice bow on my thoughts towards leaving New Zealand and give more clarity than questions to my thoughts towards returning home.

Someone very wise and somewhat hardened by the toil of life once told me that if you have two tasks to do in a day, one of which is to skin a bear and the other is to skin a trout, tackle the bear first. Taking this advice, please enjoy my thoughts and very mixed feelings towards returning home. I want you to imagine with me. For those of you whom v…

Moses Moments

But Moses said to the Lord, “Oh, my Lord, I am not eloquent, either in the past or since you have spoken to your servant, but I am slow of speech and of tongue.”Then the Lord said to him, “Who has made man's mouth? Who makes him mute, or deaf, or seeing, or blind? Is it not I, the Lord?Now therefore go, and I will be with your mouth and teach you what you shall speak.”But he said, “Oh, my Lord, please send someone else.”Exodus 4:10-13 ESV

For those of you unfamiliar with the stories of Moses, he was the one leading the caravan of previously enslaved Jews from Egypt involving all the bad plagues and the parting of the Red Sea. He also wrote the 10 Commandments and inspired the hit film, "The Prince of Egypt." He's one of the big Kahunas of the Old Testament, having even written the first few books of the Bible. His story is one so detailed that text like the one above often gets forgotten amongst the crazy stories of him speaking to burning bushes and turning his staff…

Ministry Minded

For those of you not up to date, first of all welcome! My name is Eliza Edge, and my current job is serving as a missionary in Auckland, New Zealand. My post is at a church plant north of the city in a very new suburb called Millwater. I've learned a lot from the pastor I work with, including how to scuba dive and play squash, but the biggest thing he's shown me is the necessity of ministry and the church's role in its surrounding community. A huge shout out to John and the people of Millwater Wesleyan: this one is thanks to you!

Ministry is a much bigger term than I had first realized. Before serving here, I had thought of ministry as a church and its various facets of churching for different ages, ie Children's ministry, youth ministry, young adult ministry, full adult ministry, older adult ministry, mom/dad ministry, and so on and so forth. Bascially, I thought it was groups of people of a similar age gathering and getting to know Jesus better, but ministry is much m…

Representing America

I have been in New Zealand for 10 months now, and my nationality has not been an item of distress or question until quite recently. For that, I realize I am extremely privileged. I didn't run from my country to be here, as I encounter in lots of immigrants. I didn't come here in search of better or freer government or way of life. I came here to serve, not knowing my country would be facing turmoil of the like that it hasn't seen in many, many moons. I love America and being American, but right now, patriotism isn't coming as naturally as it usually does.
                              (photo above taken at Black Lives Matter protest in Auckland City)
I learned from living in Australia and have been reminded since stepping foot in New Zealand that there is a full range of feelings for America amongst the rest of the world, from idyllic admiration to pure spite. There is respect for the fact that we, as a nation, lead the free world, but there is also a huge amount of fear…

Take it To-Go

To all of you in various forms of lockdown: I hope you and your loved ones are both physically and mentally well and maybe(just maybe) even enjoying yourselves. I’d like to dedicate this post to talk about things to take forward from this time of quarantine(note: the pictures are not highly related but just some pictures from the past few weeks):

1. Time with friends is invaluable: anything can be perceived as a burden, even the things we love. I watched it happen to countless people I studied music with. They came in loving music and their instruments and would soon find practicing and then rehearsing and eventually even performing to be a burden! I found that any time people feel like they have to do things, they forget that they actually have often chosen to be where they are. We can end up treating our jobs, our hobbies, and even the people we love like burdens. People are not burdens though. People, especially friends and family, are gifts. Getting to spend time with them talking,…


Along with most of the world at this point, New Zealand is under lockdown which in turn makes all of my work remote. This has been a time for lots of creativity and imagination, and those who are skilled in the art of improvising have found their time to shine in the world of distance operations. The theme of my life at the moment seems to be “we’ll make it up as we go along.” Not exactly ideal for someone who likes to be prepared and ahead of the curve, but definitely a time to grow, pray, and watch God work. These are some of the ways I’ve been continuing to serve in my post as a youth pastor and some of the things I’ve done just because I’ve been given the time and space. 

I, as I’m sure most of you do, feel like a model example for a prime New Yorker article cover where my hand has actually turned into a phone and my eyes have the constant gleam of a back-lit screen. Don’t get me wrong. I’m thankful. Without this hand-held computer, I’d be up the creek without a paddle, but it can …