“To all the women out there: You Have a Big Role!”
Meet Joanna, One of Our First-Year Students!
Joanna is a first-year Biblical Studies student, married, and a mother of three children, two girls and a boy. She is from Jordan and moved to Bethlehem 13 years ago. She has a Diploma in Secretary and Business Management from Jordan with years of experience as a secretary. Joanna met Christ 10 years ago. Through a vision, He invited her to talk about Him and to be a witness of Him.
But life passed by, and she became busy with life’s challenges as a wife and a mother until one day, thirteen years after she moved to Bethlehem, she came to the College to apply for a job: “That day, I came to apply for a secretary job at the College. The moment I entered the offices, I forgot everything about that job, and I found myself out of nowhere telling the secretary that met with me that I was here to study the word of God.
“When I first came to Bethlehem, I was alone; I left my family, friends, and everything I was familiar with and came to a strange country, so I always felt like an outsider. Life was hard on me. When I came to the College, my life changed a lot – I now have a purpose, and I’m a stronger person than before. Now I am built again. At the College, I found a loving family that I missed, and a healthy atmosphere that I feel a part of. I can come and speak with my colleagues as if I’m talking with my sister or mother, although they are all younger than me.”
The faculty greatly affected Joanna’s life. She said that every one of them taught her something different: “Some gave me the sense of challenge, to push myself and get high marks, some are there for me and listen to me and answer all my questions about life or faith. They are my refuge.”
The courses she is taking are also enriching her life and knowledge. For example, through the College, she learned to pray more, which is because of the morning devotions the students attend two days a week, and because of the daily prayers they make before each class: “Now I have learned to start anything – small or big – in my life with a prayer.”
Joanna is looking forward to the coming years at the College and what she will be learning and experiencing. Her goal is to get the BA Degree, of course, but it is the knowledge of the Word of God that is more important for her.
Joanna gives a strong message to all the women out there: “I encourage every woman, whether you are a wife or a mom, not to say that ‘I don’t have time,’ because we all don’t have time, and we all are busy, but we can create the time. Studying, especially at a place like Bethlehem Bible College, will change not only your life but also your home and your children’s and husband’s lives. I learned to arrange my time, between home chores, teaching and taking care of the kids, and studying. In the beginning, it was hard, but where there is a will, there is always a way! Your role doesn’t stop at marriage and children. It is way bigger than that. So stand up, take a step and change your life.”
Amira is the Communications Coordinator of Bethlehem Bible College. She is a committed Palestinian Christian who has a passion for writing about the intersection of faith and seeking justice for her fellow countrymen. To read more of her writings sign up for Bethlehem Bible College’s monthly newsletter.