Published on Monday, August 3, 2020
People leave the comfort of their homes to participate in mission trips with hopes to impact other’s lives. They travel to third-world countries, build houses, teach school, and share God’s word. Although the effect they have on those they are serving is great, many times, it is the one serving that experiences the biggest life change.
Such is true for one of Beck’s very own employees, Matt Feder, a sales support manager in Olivia, MN. Matt traveled to the Dominican Republic in October 2019, along with fellow Beck’s employees, to serve with Freedom International Ministries for a week. It was Matt’s first mission trip.
“When Matt called home from Freedom during his October trip, I knew God had to be speaking to his heart,” said Angela. “The way he talked about the experience was not his typical likeness. It was neat how God worked in that way.”
It was that trip that inspired Matt, his wife Angela, and their four daughters to commit to moving to the Dominican Republic to begin a new journey as missionaries.
“When I got back from the October trip, we started talking to our pastor and a few others, including Jason Hilgeman, founder and missionary at Freedom,” said Matt. “Our pastor told us we should visit the mission as a family.”
A month after Matt returned, they booked a trip to the Dominican Republic – the first trip out of the U.S. for Angela and their four daughters. The family spent the first week of January there, helping with the school and meeting with the missionaries to ask questions and learn all about life in the Dominican.
“As I look back at everything that happened, what God did in Matt’s heart during his October trip really set us in motion,” said Angela. “So, when we were down there in January, it was the little things, like watching our daughters in the classroom and seeing that God was going to use them with the kids, that confirmed God’s call for our family.”
Although the activities they did were similar to Matt’s experience in October, it was much more emotional for the family as they weighed the decision at hand.
“Towards the end of the week when we were making that decision, the phrase we kept saying was, ‘this will be really hard, but this feels like home,’” said Angela. “It just felt like this is where God was calling us to be.”
Once back in the U.S., the family agreed to move forward with the process. Matt and Angela’s daughters, Grace, 17, Anna, 15, Beth, 13, and Ella, 11, are all onboard with the idea, despite some emotions and apprehension. Those feelings are not exclusively felt by the younger members of the family, though.
“My whole life and career has been structured and analytical,” said Matt. “It makes no sense for me to be doing what I’m doing. It’s so out of my comfort zone. The pieces will come into place, but at the end of the day I can’t control all of this. I’m excited and terrified.”
The family plans to be in the Dominican Republic by the end of 2020. They are selling their home and storing minimal items with family. Each family member is allowed to bring three suitcases with them.
In addition to packing up and selling their house, the Feders are in the fundraising process. They will rely on individuals and organizations to help pay for their daily living needs.
“We are going to go down and teach and build, but everyone back here that is supporting every month, they are as much a part of this as we are,” said Angela. “There have been days when we get discouraged, but then somebody that signed up to partner with us will send an encouraging email to lift our spirits.”
Thank you Feder family for your commitment to your faith and your willingness to follow God’s calling for your lives. You all will be in our hearts and prayers as you continue your journey.
Author: Ashley Heyen
Categories: CropTalk, 2020
Tags: CropTalk, freedom international, community talk