Nursing is my Mission Field

By Stephanie Herrick Kays M.ED, MSN, FNP-C


As a Christian Nurse and now Family Nurse Practitioner, I have seen over my career how my mission field is where God places me. When I was a new grad nurse, I wanted to see the world; I thought that to make a difference I had to go to exotic locations, little did I know that people in my own backyard needed assistance. I was called into oncology nursing upon my graduation from nursing school, as God knew that I needed this mission field, as much as it needed me.

In nursing school, I thought I would be a pediatric nurse, only to find I did not like how seeing children having to be repeatedly exposed to the same abuses. Oncology brought me closer to God. I was able to see His miracles all around me, seeing patients overcome terminal diagnosis as well as die with dignity. I was able to help facilitate birthday parties, weddings, and dedications with patients to give them that memory that they deserved. In addition to working with the patients, I also was active with local high schools to discuss healthcare careers with the community around me. I found it enjoyable to discuss with high school Juniors and Seniors what a career in healthcare was like and why I went into it. It was my way of giving back to the community who has done so much for me and my success. As a Nurse Practitioner, I continue to believe I am God’s Hands and Feet. I often pray that God provides me with patients that only I am skilled to treat, and He has. I have seen patients that due to my background in oncology, were able to get the outpatient support that they needed for their diagnosis and treatment. I also lead a huge outreach each fall where Grand Canyon University donates sports physicals to Special Olympics athletes from low-income schools that might not be able to receive this otherwise. At the end of these events, my heart is full and I can see the work we did make an impact on children as all children deserve the opportunity to live fulfilling lives.

I have also gone on a medical mission trip to Costa Rica. I enjoyed this experience and saw God work in ways one only can imagine around us. Most importantly, what I have learned over my career is that my mission field does not need to be in a third world country, it can be all around me . I tell my nurse practitioner students that we are called to be God’s hands and feet, it is our duty to listen to where His spirit is guiding us and provide them examples of how I have been called in my clinical practice. As a nurse practitioner instructor, I believe my mission field is my students and this is why I utilize principles of simulation in the classroom setting, as I know the more hands on experiences students have the better prepared they are for whatever God shows them.

The College of Nursing and Health Care Professions helps students prepare for rewarding careers in the healthcare field. Learn more by visiting our website or contacting us using the green Request More Information button at the top of the page.

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author’s and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Grand Canyon University. Any sources cited were accurate as of the publish date.