Tracy Shu’s life is at a standstill.
The 21-year-old sociology major has missed a week of classes because “my heart is not in the right place.”
“School isn’t my thing,” she said. “It’s not that I don’t get the material – I just think I have a calling for something else.”
Shu has been trying to convince her family to let her transfer to the Bethel School of Supernatural Ministry in Redding, Calif. She wants to become a missionary.
She says Bethel has a hands-on approach and it focuses on what she wants to do.
“A secular (school) gives me tools, but it’s expensive and there are so many distractions, although there are ministry groups.”
Before becoming a believer, Shu says she was making choices that would eventually “lead (her) to death.”
“There were parties, drugs, boys and unhealthy decisions,” she said of her past.
Shu graduated from West Valley Christian High School in Oxnard after being ousted from three different Los Angeles Unified School District high schools. At West Valley, she became a believer and changed her life around.
Last June, Shu went on a missionary trip to Mexico for a week and volunteered at an orphanage in Baja California, where her desire to serve and become a missionary grew. She almost didn’t go.
“All seats were taken, but God make room for me,” she said.
Shu said she prayed God would grant her the opportunity to attend, and at the last minute someone backed down. She took their place.
“It was meant to be,” she said.
On the first day of their trip the volunteers where assigned tasks. She had to clean the men’s restrooms.
“The experience humbled me,” she said.
Shu was also involved in adult and child evangelism in nearby towns where she had the opportunity to see the poverty and need of many families first hand. Her trip made her realize she wants to serve those who are taken advantage of, such as human trafficking victims and sweatshop employees.
“I realized how blessed I am and that I take many things for granted,” she said.
While in Mexico, Shu wanted to affirm her beliefs and was baptized in San Vicente, Guerrero. Shu now attends the Expression 58 Church in Studio City where she hopes to get a pastoral reference so she can be accepted to Bethel.
“I want to encourage people who don’t know the truth and love that a relationship with God brings,” she said. “I am running after my destiny.”