Katie Davis, who was only 18 years old at the time, did something that most girls her age would not. The homecoming queen and senior class president had a world of possibilities ahead of her, but she chose to forego them all in exchange for a life that few can conceive.
Katie embarked on a mission trip to Uganda in December of her senior year of high school, when God inscribed fresh desires on her heart and opened her eyes to a different sort of possibility.
Katie opted to forego university and her yellow convertible after praying and seeking God’s guidance on her next steps after graduation. Instead, she volunteered to teach kindergarten in an orphanage in Uganda for a year.
Katie made Uganda her permanent home in 2008 as a result of her devotion to God and faith in what she couldn’t see.
She founded Amazima Ministries, which is derived from the Ugandan term “amazima,” which means “truth.” Through the truth of Jesus Christ, the organization works to heal lives, repair relationships, and fundamentally impact communities.
Kisses from Katie—A Story of Relentless Love and Redemption, which she wrote, was a New York Times bestseller.
Katie had become a mother to 13 little girls by the time she was 23 years old, whom she had adopted and raised as her own.
Katie tells TODAY that the foster and adoption process taught her the most essential lesson about true love and what it means to love.
“I had no idea the crazy, heartbreaking, uncontrollable love I would feel for children in those early days of laying sleepy heads on pillows and educating tiny hearts to know Jesus when I was lying sleepy heads on pillows and training tiny hearts to know Jesus.” I didn’t realize they’d become extensions of me, that when they grieved, I’d hurt even more deeply than before, and that when they expressed joy at a success or passion for God’s Word, my heart would swell inside me and I’d be unable to hold back tears of joy. I had no idea that sometimes when I looked at them, I would feel so much love in my chest that my heart would physically hurt.”
Majors met for the first time when he arrived in Uganda to serve as a missionary. The two grew raised in the same town of Franklin, Tennessee.
Katie says on her blog, “We shared a hometown with only a few hilltops to keep our adolescent lives from ever colliding.”
“My husband’s love is just another way God has chosen to lavish His extravagant love on me, another continual reminder that He delights in me and each of our girls.” I see them come to life under their new father’s loving gaze, and I hear the joy and certainty in their voices as they name ‘Dad.’”
Katie didn’t have sisters or friends as bridesmaids when the couple married in 2015, but she did have 13 lovely girls who continue to be living proof of God’s faithfulness, restoration, and love.
Katie claims that just because she lives in Uganda and shares the love of Jesus with the people she meets doesn’t make her any more of a “missionary” than the rest of us.
“My husband and I live in Uganda with our three children. My neighbors, friends, and family are among those who live here. These are the streets we live on, the folks I wave to on the street, the community we pray with, the friends we eat with. This is where I call home. You can do what I do here, just where you are.”
Amazima Ministries is just one of the numerous ways you can get involved in the movement and help to educate and empower a generation of children.
You don’t have to be in Uganda to be a missionary, as Katie points out. To be the hands and feet of Jesus, you don’t have to adopt 13 children.
You can just do something to share God’s love with people who are close to you. Be a nice neighbor, introduce yourself to new people, greet each day with delight, and be filled with the spirit to bless those around you. “Right where you are,” says the narrator.