Darrell and Kimberly met in 2010. He was a widower and she was a single mother. They both felt a calling, even before they met, to serve God in the Caribbean islands where poverty is among the highest in the world. When they met, neither of them could believe that there was someone else with the same desire and dream of serving God so specifically. In November of 2011 they married and honeymooned in St. Lucia. During that time they became aware of the severe poverty on the island. For the next four years Darrell and Kimberly visited several different islands to see where God would lead them.
At the end of 2015 their search was narrowed down to three islands, with St. Lucia being one of them. After fervent prayer and wise counsel, Darrell and Kimberly asked God to open the door that He wanted them to walk through. In faith, the search continued with an additional visit to each of the three islands, seeking God to provide clarity and faith to move forward.
The first of the three islands they returned to was St. Lucia. Eight days into the 16-day visit God had not revealed anything at all. It seemed that St. Lucia might not be the place where God was calling them to serve. On day nine, Kimberly had work to do and went to find an area where the Wi-Fi signal was stronger. While talking with her assistant, Shirley, the question was asked, “How is the trip going?” Shirley knew that Darrell and Kimberly were seeking God for direction. Kimberly explained that so far God had not made anything clear and they probably wouldn't be coming back to St. Lucia, scratching the island off the list. Shirley replied that she would immediately get on her knees and pray for God to make the way clear. After the phone call Kimberly finished up her work then headed to the hotel room to put the computer away. During that time, Darrell met a man near the dock doing carpentry work. The man's name was Martin.
Since Darrell was a contractor he and Martin struck up a conversation. However, on the island employees are specifically instructed not to engage guests in conversation, so Martin was taking a big risk. Martin told Darrell that his Pastor and local church had been looking for missionaries to come and help them for nearly 10 years. At that point in the conversation, Kimberly walked up, having no idea what was transpiring. Darrell introduced her to Martin and shared with her what they had been talking about.
Kimberly was astonished! Martin immediately called his Pastor and set up a meeting for the following day. Darrell and Kimberly spent the next day with Pastor Hilton and his wife Una. The pastor invited them to attend church on Sunday where the congregation greeted Darrell and Kimberly with open arms. In faith, Pastor Hilton and Una had already built on to their home, creating space for the missionaries they knew God would one day send them.
Darrell and Kimberly returned to the church the following Sunday before heading to the airport to return to Texas. After spending the day with Pastor Hilton and his wife, they asked the Beckums to return the following year to help the church put on a Vacation Bible School for the children. The Beckums prayed and then shared this request with the Elders of their church in Texas to see what might be possible. The elders gave their blessing and in 2016 Hillside Community Church sent a team of 6 to Jacmel, St. Lucia to assist Fellowship Baptist Church in the first of many mission trips. Because of the close relationships formed, and the very apparent need in St. Lucia, the Beckums knew that God had shown them where they were to serve.
Since that time the Beckums have continued to lead multiple summer mission trips to St. Lucia. In addition, they travel to St. Lucia several times a year taking Bibles and teaching materials to the St. Lucian people. Together they have had the opportunity to teach about Christ in the local schools and do outreach among the communities. Working closely with Church leaders, the Beckums developed discipleship programs with the specific purpose of raising up strong leaders within the community, creating and empowering disciples that make Disciples of Christ with a Kingdom mindset.
In 2017 God provided an opportunity to purchase land and build a home. After a year of applications for all the required documents and licenses, the land was purchased in August of 2018. With excitement and passion the Beckums will live near the church and among the communities they have grown to love and serve.
In 2018 Sea of Hope Ministries was formed so that others can help the Beckums take the Gospel of Christ to St. Lucia. They plan to move to the island in early 2019 and live full-time, serving the island communities and sharing God's love. Their goal is to simply be disciples of Jesus Christ, teaching those in St. Lucia to be disciples that make disciples. Darrell will be acting as stand-in Youth Pastor at Fellowship Baptist Church in Jacmel. They will help set up various youth and children's programs in the communities of Jacmel, Roseau, Anse La Raye, Bois D'Inde, Coolietown, Marigot, Morne D'or, Vanard, and Fond Manger.
This is an exciting time. However, it is also a challenging time as both Darrell and Kimberly will be giving up their careers and income in the States. To be obedient and follow the calling of Jesus Christ they are stepping out in faith knowing that God will provide all they need.
“Through the blessing and help of Sea Of Hope Ministries and its supporters we are excited to take the Gospel of Christ to St. Lucia.”
- Darrell & Kimberly Beckum