Believing the Call

Jun 3, 2007,Isabel Allum

I was born and grew-up in a third world nation filled with limitations and need. In our world everyone lived to survive and no one thought big. We lived a-day-at-a-time. When I was six years old I had an experience that would change that. I came home from school and was having lunch.. My mother walked over to the stove to get me a tortilla. I looked at her walking away and at that moment a vision opened in front of me in which I saw my future and God's calling on my life. I saw things I had never seen or heard before and at the same time I heard the clear voice of the Lord speaking to me. He told me about my destiny and about the things to come. I was stunned, as no one had prepared me for something like that. I of course could not understand it and told my mother when she came back. She simply dismissed it saying that it was my imagination. However I knew it wasn't because what I saw and heard was very real.

I kept that experience in my heart and waited. When I was 18 I had a supernatural encounter with the Lord and got saved. This caused a big problem as my family took it as high treason. It was the worse thing I could possibly do in their eyes. I was disowned by my whole family, which in my country was not a common thing to happen. I was beaten and persecuted severely. I was put to many tests in order to force me to deny Jesus, and then one night my mother physically tried to kill me because I would not deny Him. That particular night, the Lord spoke to me and gave two promises. He said that if I did not give up on Him, He would give me ultimate victory and would save my household, which He has almost completed (80% of my family is now saved), and the second promise was that I would walk with Him and would serve Him every day for the rest of my life. I hung onto those two promises with all my heart. Shortly after that, we were visiting together and just like when I was six, He opened up a vision and showed me with much more detail the calling and destiny of my life, and asked me if I wanted it. I said, "Yes Lord, here I am. I will do it". That of course began a journey that I could have never imagined.

I was in a country where women were second to men, and in a church were women were not allowed to minister. That of course, was a big problem, but God told me not to worry because I was not ready yet and had much to learn. He also said that He would take care of the circumstances and would open the doors for me. So I decided to do what I was allowed to do, which was serve the people. I served the best I could and kept in my heart the greatest things God had shown me. I never let those mindsets of men stop me even though I had been raised in that culture. When the Lord spoke and showed me my destiny and calling to serve Him, everything changed in me and I was determined to do what I was born to do. I knew that it was not up to me to change the minds of men. My responsibility was to be faithful and obedient to God's calling regardless of the circumstances. I kept on believing, investing, and pursuing the impossible. I sometimes shared with others what God had said but most of the people were negative about it, so, I decided to only share with a couple of people who were close to me, and then pondered in my heart the things God had said.

Time passed, days turned into weeks, months, and years but I kept the vision alive like Caleb. I did all I could in order to be ready whenever the time came. I aligned my life according to what God had said even though in the natural everyone around me was telling me to do something else and stop day dreaming. I prepared for the destiny I had seen although causing great disappointment to my family who wanted me to work for the government. Then American missionaries began to come. One thing we noticed was that they had a much bigger God than we had. Our God could save us, heal us, provide for us, and take care of our family, but their God could do amazing things. Their God was more powerful and more resourceful. Americans had a different realm of limitations, which was broader than ours. They could travel and do things that seemed impossible to us. For some reason they would notice me and would prophesy over me saying the same things God had spoken to me. Everyone at church used to shake their heads and say, "As if she needed that. She already day dreams too much". My pastors and leaders would come and debrief me after the missionaries left saying things like, "Well you know that those things are not possible right. Don't you go believing it. Remember that they are Americans and bless their hearts, they like to exaggerate sometimes, but you must be realistic. We do not want you to become disappointed later when those things do not happen". I used to hear them but could not believe them. I knew that what God had said was real and would come to pass somehow. So, I positioned myself in the place of availability and in time my Father opened the doors no one else could open. The evidence of God's calling and his standing by me became evident, and I became the first woman to ever speak in the main Sunday service at that same church, and the leaders who could not believe and tried to shut me down, sat down to learn and receive from me.

As we travel around the world ministering sometimes we have run into people who still are not opened to women in ministry. In the past I overheard some say: "she ministers like a man and carries the authority of a man, and that is not possible". Yet they change as soon as they see the Spirit that flows as I minister. I do not have to argue with them or try to convince them. The Holy Spirit deals with that. I have come to understand that being a man or a woman is not important when it comes to serving the Lord, because ministry is the Father's business not man's business, and as his children we get to partake of it. It is not because of us and what we do, but it is because of who He is and what He does.

Doors for ministry opened up slowly so I had to work for many years single and married. I had a very successful business career, which I finally left for good a year ago. For a long time I did both, "career and ministry" side by side, but it was hard as the work of the Kingdom kept increasing. However, it took over two years for my bosses to accept my resignation, and towards the end, they offered to give me the company as a gift [my inheritance, they said] if I stayed. I thanked them but said "no" because, I know my destiny and why I exist . I have Kingdom inheritance and nothing, not even wealth compares with that. During all those years doing both things I knew the importance of keeping focused on the calling of God in my life. It was not always easy but I kept work and ministry always flowing side by side. I knew that it was pivotal to keep a good balance so I would not lose sight of the goal, as it happens to many. Today I am living the life I was created to live, doing exactly what I was born to do just as God promised, and all those impossible things have become a reality. We are a family in ministry. Our daughter is actively involved in ministry as well. That is what we do. We love serving the Lord and his people. Ivan and I travel around the world ministering, teaching, and equipping God's people for the work of the ministry. At home we pastor a growing and exciting church. I am actively get to partake of it. It is not because of us and what we do, but it is because of who He is and what He does. Doors for ministry opened up slowly so I had to work for many years single and married. I had a very successful business career, which I finally left for good a year ago. For a long time I did both, "career and ministry" side by side, but it was hard as the work of the Kingdom kept increasing. However, it took over two years for my bosses to accept my resignation, and towards the end, they offered to give me the company as a gift [my inheritance, they said] if I stayed. I thanked them but said "no" because, I know my destiny and why I exist . I have Kingdom inheritance and nothing, not even wealth compares with that. During all those years doing both things I knew the importance of keeping focused on the calling of God in my life. It was not always easy but I kept work and ministry always flowing side by side. I knew that it was pivotal to keep a good balance so I would not lose sight of the goal, as it happens to many.

Today I am living the life I was created to live, doing exactly what I was born to do just as God promised, and all those impossible things have become a reality. We are a family in ministry. Our daughter is actively involved in ministry as well. That is what we do. We love serving the Lord and his people. Ivan and I travel around the world ministering, teaching, and equipping God's people for the work of the ministry. At home we pastor a growing and exciting church. I am actively involved in different ministries of the church and do a lot of counselling. We are also writing books and developing materials. In our house we always have people staying with us from all over the world. The Lord said that He would send us to the nations but will also bring the nations to us, so it is busy, very busy. In order to enjoy what we do and avoid 'burn-out' we have learned to find balance, prioritize, and share equally in everything. Ivan and I are a team in all we do in ministry, home, family, and life. He is a man of great character and authority who has always made room for me to arise next to him. For us sharing our lives with our Lord is the central focus of our existence, and we always keep in mind that we live to make our Father famous and make Him smile, and this we will do till the end of our journey on earth/