Victoria Little: Pursuing Jesus in Kenya

There is nothing more beautiful than watching someone live out the calling God has placed on their life. Some commissions seem more fearful and dangerous than others – particularly to those of us who have not been called to those fearful and dangerous places! Victoria Little, 24, has been called by God to reach the Samburu tribe of Kenya.

Victoria and I sat down to talk about this mission that has been burning in her heart for years now. I asked her when this interest in mission work started.

“When I was younger, missionaries would come and talk in churches and show all the pictures and videos, and it really – I loved it, and I wanted to be a part of it. I was in 7th grade or so. I didn’t really pursue it until I was 15 and went on my first mission trip to Mexico.”

I was curious to know when it was that she made the decision to make missions her life-calling.

“I surrendered my life to full-time missions when I was 15 at Youth Aflame. The speaker was Scott Coghill. He was talking about the call of God and surrendering your life to Christian service. After that I started reading several books about missionaries, and I loved what they were doing and what God was doing through that work.” Youth Aflame is an annual conference hosted at Cramerton Free Will Baptist Church, specifically targeted towards teens to challenge them to dedicate their lives to God, and to serve in whatever capacity He has called them.

Some of Victoria’s favorite missionaries are Elisabeth and Jim Elliot, who ministry was based in Ecuador, and Free Will Baptist missionaries, LaVerne and Lorene Miley, who ministered in the Ivory Coast. Last but not least is the husband and wife team she will be joining later this year, Eddy and Amanda Simmons, who are now in Kenya with the Samburu people. Eddy and Amanda initially started in pastoral ministry, but are now in Kenya full-time and have seen over 600 Samburu come to faith in Jesus Christ over the last several years. One hundred of those came to Christ about a month ago at their first food distribution.

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Victoria met the Simmons in January of 2014, and in May of that same year went on a mission trip where she worked with them for 3 weeks. There she was able to do wound care and basic medical treatment. At the time she was in college studying nursing, preparing herself for the medical mission field. Knowing that the Simmons have a made a huge impact on her life, I asked her to tell me a little bit about them and their relationship.

“Eddie and his son took a trip when he was a teenager, to Kenya – and when he was there, he just knew this is where the Lord wanted him. I don’t know if Amanda went. Separately, the Lord laid it on their hearts and when they came together, they realized they had the same prayer about it.

“Their first grandbaby is here, and their 4 sons. It’s hard when they can’t be where they’re needed, but they know this is where the Lord wants them. Amazing, godly people. Everything they do is focused on Kingdom work. Even when I – I’ll be discouraged and talk to them about something – they always point me to the Scripture and to the Lord. It helps me to have a more positive attitude toward it.”

I asked about the composition of her team and what her duties will be once she reaches Kenya.

“Just them and me [Eddy and Amanda] – Samburu coworkers, but they’re not there all the time. They come for a couple weeks and then leave. My focus will be on preventative care. ‘Community Health Worker’ will be my technical term. I’ll be acting as ‘doctor’ – BIG quotation marks there!” she laughed.

For any family, having a loved one move 8,000 miles away would be a pretty heavy fact to deal with, so I asked what her parents’ reaction is, and others in the community as well.

“They’ve always been supportive. Mother’s Day was really hard for my mom, but they would never ask me to stay. I would never underestimate how difficult it is. My mom always says, ‘She’s safer there if she’s following God than she would be if she were in our backyard.’ Most people have been overwhelmingly supportive. It’s been such an incredible blessing. Some people think I’m crazy and think, why would I want to give up my job here?”

I’d love to say I wouldn’t think that, but to really embrace the reality of that decision may actually make me second guess myself as well.

Sharing the gospel in a foreign culture must be a totally different experience, so Victoria explained to me her story and how the message is most effectively communicated with the Samburu.

“I was able to share with groups of women through storying. It was so simple, sharing the story of Jesus. And it made sense to them, because it’s so simple, and the gospel is supposed to be simple. So I was just very real and open with them. Our translator would always explain it further since she knows the culture.”

To be willing to give up every comfort you have, the closeness in proximity to all of your family, friends and loved ones – you must be totally sold out for Love. God’s Love. Is it worth it? What a different world it must be. I asked Victoria to tell me what it is that she loves about Kenya and the Samburu people.

“How simple they are. I mean, they literally have nothing. They live in mud huts! But even the children are so full of life – they’re just like kids here playing outside, even though they’re working all day with the sheep and stuff. They’re just very simple – they enjoy community a lot more than we do here, I feel like. It’s almost harder here [in America] to talk about the Lord – it shouldn’t be that way.”

She is hoping to learn the language as she works with her translator, Eunice, and others who also speak English. I asked her what she would use while she was learning the language.

“Compassion has no language barrier. That’s a big deal for me, since I’ll be doing medical care – smiling and body language don’t have any language barriers.”

She shared with me the theme that the Lord is speaking into her life, and what He is teaching her.

“He is enough. I feel very inadequate and unqualified. I’m not a doctor, I don’t have much experience. I guess that fear of not being able to help someone because I’m not experienced enough…”

She has financial criteria to meet before she leaves, which she hopes to do by October.

“I’ve been traveling all over, going to churches, Bible studies, small groups, to share what God’s doing in Kenya and raise support that way.”

If you would like to contribute to Victoria’s mission, the best way would be through the Free Will Baptist International Missions website, www.fwbgo.com.

3 Replies to “Victoria Little: Pursuing Jesus in Kenya”

  1. Connie Comer says: Reply

    Love your story! I know God will use you in a marvelous way! Little did we know God’s call on your life in K-5, always knew God had a special plan for your life. So very thankful for you. God bless.

  2. Jessie Boda says: Reply

    Wow! I am so encouraged by your story 🙂 I am about your age and am working towards the same goals, though with Wycliffe Bible Translators. Keep up the good work and serve Christ with all you have. It is all worth it 🙂

    1. AlanaFlowersGibson@gmail.com says: Reply

      Thanks for your encouragement, Jessie! I’m sorry it’s been a while since I’ve posted and I’m late in responding – I’ve had a ton of stuff going on in the last month, but plan to get back on my regular schedule now!

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