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Batam, Indonesia Mission Trip!

Autumn Ratledge and Trinity Stoik (cousins & best friends!) are joining Pastor Blair Ewaskow and a small team for a Missions Trip

Where: Batam, Indonesia 

When: August 6-27th


  • Teaching English and serving at local schools and churches in the Villages
  • Sharing their testimonies and praying for the people in the local villages


  • The Great Commission -

    "Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you."
    Matthew 28:19-20a


Autumn's heart and testimony:

When I was a little girl, before I could barely talk, I would play orphanage in my grandmas basement. I would put myself in another faraway country and take care of the kids, pray for the sick babies, and, in my little 5-year-old imagination, envision them being healed, pretending they spoke a language I couldn’t understand. From a very young age, I always had this deep feeling within myself that I couldn’t really understand. I’d always say to myself, even at 8, 10, 12 years old, “I don’t feel like I’m supposed to be here.” My grandma would always tell me that one day I'd open a real orphanage somewhere in the world. My young, innocent spirit really believed her—that oneday I'd be out in the world, doing Kingdom work in Jesus name.

As I got older, that dream, and that heart for missions, it faded. But this feeling never left—"I'm not supposed to be here.” So I took that feeling into my own hands because I didn’t have a close relationship with the Lord, but I did have a deep interest in languages and different cultures and different countries. So I started studying Mandarin, Korean, and Swahili, and at 18 years old I decided to go to China for 6 months to study Mandarin and learn the culture. God closed that door because of COVID.

You see, I wanted to go out into all the world, but I didn’t want the “preach the gospel” part. I didn’t want the ministry part—because according to myself (and only myself lol), I "wasn’t called into ministry,” so I was intending to leave God out of my world travel dreams. But, since that door had been closed, I decided, "Clearly, I’m not meant to go anywhere; therefore, I’ll forget about that desire."

It wasn't until 3 years later, in November 2022, when the Lord told me to go to Vanguard, and when I was finally surrendered enough to hear and obey His voice—that I knew I was indeed called into ministry, whether I felt good enough for it or not.

A few months later, someone asked me, “What would you do if you could do anything in the world?” I remember telling them, very reluctantly, about the feeling that had been in my heart since a little girl. Then, thinking I was about to sound so spiritual and wise, I quickly added, “But I don’t want to do what I want to do; I only want to do whatever God wants me to do. ” To which they replied, “What God wants you to do isn’t always different than what you want to do; He gives you desires too.” And so my heart began to burn to go out, wherever He should take me, and spread the light of Christ. Because this light that had been imparted into my spirit by the revelation of Christ... I wanted the ends of the earth to know about it, and about how He had changed my life, and how they needed to know this Jesus too.

5 months ago, around Christmas, I began to feel so strong that He wanted me to go... somewhere. There had been times over the years that I had tried to go.. “Maybe I’ll go to China"... closed door.. “Maybe I’ll go to Ethiopia"... closed door. But this time I really felt the Holy Spirit saying, “It’s time.” So I tried to make plans to go to Thailand to volunteer at an orphanage for 4 months. But, when March rolled around, I didn’t feel settled about those plans, so I told them that I had decided not to come, as I didn’t want to go anywhere ahead of His Spirit.

About a week later, I was on a walk, praying and asking God what He wanted me to do this summer because, although the door to Thailand had been closed, I still felt like He wanted me to go somewhere. A few minutes later, Pastor Blair (one of the Vanguard professors and my practicum supervisor) asked me, "Hey, do you want to come to Indonesia this summer?” Long story short, by the end of that day, not knowing how on earth it would be possible but taking a blind step of faith, I had said yes.


Trinity's heart and testimony:

Similar to Autumn, ever since I was a little girl, many of my earliest memories with my grandma (Netty Stoik) included playing Orphanage and Missionary!  We would always have children that we were taking care of and sharing Jesus with and exotic countries that we were in!  I always felt in my heart that one day this would become my reality.  That I would venture out into the world to live out this childhood dream and prayer of helping people in far away countries and sharing Jesus with them!  

And later as a teenager, I remember seeing the Missionaries that came to church to share updates on Missions Sunday and always thinking to myself that I wanted to do that too!  That one day that would be me!

I never would have guessed that the invitation to do this for real would come so soon after my cousin, Autumn and I talked about this recently at a Vanguard Preview Day!  When asked what our dream was, we remembered that we had always talked about going on a Missions Trip together and then amazingly, God opened the door for us to join Pastor Blair on a Missions Trip to Indonesia! Wow!  Ok God!!

Here's what I shared on social media when I first announced this with family and friends: 

I am stepping out in Faith to say YES to God’s invitation for a 3 week missions trip to the country of Indonesia this coming August!!
After a series of opened and shut doors it has become clear that God is steering me to this opportunity to join my sweet cousin and best friend, Autumn and a small team on this trip where we will be teaching English and other endeavors to help and bless the people in a village there.
For years and years, I have listened to the testimonies of missionary families speaking about what they do and always felt a call on my heart that this was something I wanted to do someday and now, with the opportunity right in front of me, I know that God is asking me to take a leap of faith!!
And because it is such a big investment, I am praying and believing and trusting for the funds to be raised in Jesus’ name! I will share the link to the gofundme account that we set up just in case anyone felt led to help support me in any way!!
Thank you so much for your prayers, support and encouragement! I am very excited about what God is leading me to and starting in my life! It says in Mark 16:15 “…Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation.”
Okay, Lord… Here I am, send me. ♥

And here is Autumn's follow-up post:

Indonesia, part 2 .. surprise
March 26.. Preview Day with my cousins. The college president asked the chapel room - “What is a dream you have?”… Talking with Trinity about how we so wish one day we could go on a mission trip together. We’d always talked about doing that together, since we were kids. “One day we will do it”..
Well, “one day” is sooner than we thought.. above what we could ask, think or imagine
Because perhaps you recognize one of the other faces on our little God-ordained team. My dear best friend and cousin and sister, Trinidad, is coming too, by the grace of God.
How special that we get to do this for the first time, together. That the distant “oneday” we always dreamed about is 2.5mos away.
All things work together . I originally planned on going to an entirely different country, alone. Now, I’m going to a different country than I thought, with my best friend and 2 other amazing people. It’s like God was like, “You’re already so excited.. but surprise.. your favorite person in the world is coming with you too”
I’m so proud of you, Trinity, for stepping out into the unknown of what God is doing and I can’t wait to do this with you. The memories we’ll make, that’ll last a lifetime.. who else gets this opportunity ? Counting down the days!! I decree and declare that this will be life transformational and a time we’ll mark forever as a key moment in the trajectory of our lives
If you feel in your spirit to be a source of provision for Trinity, and want to plant a seed into her life as she seeks and follows what God is doing in and through her, she made a gofundme. God will reveal Himself as Jehovah Jireh. I will share the link:
Now.. to learn some Indonesian


The what and why:

I am a very all or nothing person. Before, I was ready to go to China for 6 months.. Thailand for 4 months.. alone. Just get up and go.. and honestly, if there was an opportunity to pack up all my belongings and move across the world right now, if I knew God was in it, I’d not need any persuasion. I tend to think I need to throw myself into the deep end. But thank God that we serve a patient God and a God of processes, Who doesn’t throw us into the deep end but rather moves us into what He has for us slowly, little by little. My plan: alone, for an extended period of time. His plan: Let’s start with 3 weeks, and with your cousin, one of your professors, and another likeminded girl. Thank God that He knows what we need more than we think we know what we need.

From August 6th, until August 27, we will be in Batam, Indonesia. There will be 3 main components to our trip, each with different impacts:

  1. Teaching English

The enemy does not only seek to establish his claim on a person once they are mature. Children are also a major target of the enemy, as we could see with Herod’s decree to kill all the two-year-old boys in Bethlehem. This is because a spirit doesn't have an age, and a calling doesn’t have an age—if the enemy can destroy someone’s destiny, establish his ground, and capture someone’s mind and belief system from childhood, then he has successfully seiged the adult who will be walking in that purpose in years to come.

Children spend the majority of their childhood, their most vulnerable years, in a classroom. Which makes teachers one of the most vitally important influences and presences in a child’s life, as it is their voice they are under and their presence that they are in during their most susceptible to influence years. It is teachers who make doctors, who make lawyers, etc. How vital of a role.

In Indonesia, we will spend most of our time teaching English to children from kindergarten to grade 9. We are blessed because although Indonesia is largely a Muslim country with roughly 87% of the population following Islamic religion, we are able to talk about Jesus in the school and incorporate scripture and Bible readings into our lesson plans. We will have the opportunity to plant seeds of Jesus Christ in children ages 5–15 through our teaching and presence at the school—seeds of which will be called forth in their season according to the faithfulness of His word not returning void.

  1. Testifying at various churches:

The power of testimony is a deep passion of mine. In Indonesia, we will be given multiple opportunities to share testimonies at various local churches. This will be profoundly impactful, as people can argue with theology, they can argue with all kinds of things, but it’s very hard to argue with a testimony.

When Lazarus was raised from the dead, it says that the people came not only to see Jesus but also to see Lazarus whom Jesus had raised from the dead (John 12:9). Why? Because Lazarus didn’t only have a testimony of how Jesus raised from the dead, but Lazarus WAS a living, walking testimony. He was a witness and the evidence of the miraculous healing power of God, and nobody could argue with the fact that once Lazarus was dead and now he was alive. So they came to see Lazarus, because in seeing Lazarus they saw evidence of what Christ had done.

And that is the power of testimony—it becomes evidence for those who hear it—of Christ's hand, work, ability, and power. Testimonies replicate after their own kind—"If Jesus did it for them, He will do it for me"—and testimonies ignite belief in a hopeless heart.

  1. Praying for people in the village:

Lastly, we will also be given the opportunity to pray for the sick and pray for deliverance in the village. I don’t know about you, but as for me, prayer is the engine that drives my life. Prayer is what makes dynamic power possible. I do not take prayer lightly. This opportunity to pray for the people of Indonesia will not begin when we set foot in the village. It’s already started now, on my knees, in my bedroom, every night. When we set foot there and lay hands on the people He leads us to, it will only be a physical manifestation of what has already been claimed in the spiritual realm through the labour and intercession of prayer.

Mark 16:17-18, “And these signs will follow those who believe: In My name they will cast out demons; they will speak with new tongues; they will take up serpents; and if they drink anything deadly, it will by no means hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.” We are expectant for a miraculous move of God in the lives of the people we encounter.

Our God is Jehovah Jireh, and He will reveal Himself as such in this season. When God calls, He will doubtlessly provide. There is provision in His call, and provision in obedience to His calling done His way. 1 Kings 17:3-5 says, “Leave here, turn eastward, and hide yourself by the Brook of Cherith, east of the Jordan. And it will be that you shall drink from the brook, and I have commanded the ravens to feed you there. So Elijah did as the LORD told him.”

In this season we are expecting ravens to feed us. What are ravens? A source of unexpected and unprecedented provision. I have no doubt that we will see ravens as we drink from the brook of His presence—because we didn’t call ourselves. You see, if we had called ourselves, I would be concerned. If what a person does is a reflection of their own zeal, they may suffer lack. Charisma and zeal can only take a person so far. But if what you do is a reflection of the anointing to do it, the grace to do it, and the calling of the Lord to do it, then it is backed up by the heavens. He will supply out of His riches in glory to fund His vision, done His way, when a vessel is yielded and obedient to His instruction. If you feel to be a raven, a source of provision, in this story, we would appreciate anything the Lord puts in your spirit to do. If God can use ravens, then He can use people, too.

We know this is only the first small step and the first place we will set foot foot, for His glory and in His name.

Praise God for beginnings.