Substitute teacher experienced closed nation of Jordan

Ms. Coffing takes advantage of some local transportation while in Jordan.

  • Ms. Coffing takes advantage of some local transportation while in Jordan.
  • The capital city of Jordan, Amman. Photo via blacktomato.com
  • Substitute teacher Tiffany Coffing recently returned from an overseas mission to Jordan.  Here, she poses with a Jordanian woman.
  • Ms. Coffing takes in the splendor of the country.

It’s not often that a substitute teacher has a story like this one.

Tiffany Coffing is three years removed from graduating Hope College as a Mass Communications major, and is currently a substitute teacher at area schools, including Hamilton.  However, she already has gained a world of experience through those three years.

After graduating, Tiffany decided to join YWAM, Youth With a Mission, to help spread Christianity to the closed nation of Jordan. She moved across the world to the capital city of Amman.

“I had had friends who had done it before, and I have always had the itch to just travel,” Ms. Coffing said. “My faith is very important to me, and I wanted to explain Jesus across the world.”

Ms. Coffing takes in the splendor of the country.

Ms. Coffing takes in the splendor of the country.

With Jordan being a closed nation, meaning the country only allows their citizens to believe in Islam, the government sensors e-mails of Westerners.  For instance, she was not allowed to use words like baptism, missionary, and Christianity.

To work around this she had to create a hush e-mail and use code words for those terms. She worked in the English center where she taught the people there how to speak English well, and at the same time developing a relationship with them, so that she could eventually share her religion with them.

Living on the east side of Jordan meant that she was dealing with conservative women who were slow to gain trust and open up to others, making these relationships a key step.

Ms. Coffing takes advantage of some local transportation while in Jordan.

Ms. Coffing takes advantage of some local transportation while in Jordan.

As a communication major Tiffany was taught to always look people in the eyes, but being there for six months, she adjusted to some of Jordans culture, like not looking men in the eyes. Adjusting back to the U.S. was hard for her as she found her self not making eye contact with many men.

Over the time she spent there, she was able to convert some women to the Christian faith as well as learning to grow as a person.

“I learned that it was not as much about titles, like being a Muslim or a Christian, but the relationships and sitting down to talk with them and see where their heart lies and then open them up to the Word.”

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