There’s nothing out of the ordinary about waiting tables to make ends meet — unless you’re waitressing on a science base in the Antarctic.
Through this unique experience, Leslie Abell believes that she will make her own small but vital contribution to combating climate change.
“It’s important that scientists help prevent extreme conditions from occurring around the world,” she says. “It’s so humbling to be serving them. It may not be a glamorous job, but it will be a great, God-given experience.”
And God did play a role in Leslie’s arrival at the South Pole.
“Everyone will be impacted by climate change, but the poor will be the hardest hit of all. I need to do my part to help.”
This is not the first time Leslie has felt that that God has been calling her to serve in unusual ways.
She’s found herself answering phones on an American Indian reservation, praying with Hindu priests in India with her St. Olaf College classmates and fighting for fair-housing rights in Chicago.
And Leslie’s growing in confidence that she may hear a call to serve first before she understands how she’ll find God in the experience.
“Sometimes I feel like I’m not praying hard enough or working hard enough because some people sense what they want to do, like be a nurse or teacher, but I’m not like that,” Leslie confides.
“I just float around from one thing to another and can see my vocation unfolding in hindsight. I think everyone’s experience is different, but for some, like me, I think we just have to wait and see where things go from here.”
Right now, Leslie is leaning in the direction of policy making once she moves back to the United States. But for the time being, she wants to cherish the time God has given her to enjoy the stark beauty of Antarctica.