Amanda Dorough | She's Paying It Off

The Story of My Journey to Debt Freedom, One Tiny Step at a Time


The Blog I Never Expected to Write

When I returned from the World Race and proclaimed that I was returning to Bolivia because God told me to, few really believed my explanation. It’s hard for many in our modern society to understand that God does still speak to us. But the reason I chose to come for 10 months was a little bit fuzzier. I heard “go back to Bolivia,” but I never heard for how long, so I chose a timeframe that made logical sense, prayed about it and moved forward. But it seems like I got it wrong.

I thought 10 months, but God apparently said 10 weeks. Ya, it surprised me when I figured it out too.

It all started two weeks ago. This tug inside that told me I should start praying about going home (and no, not because of Christmas). There have been a lot of changes recently both in in the guesthouse and with the way HOH deals with volunteers, changes that makes it a lot harder for me to feel at home here. The lack of community has also began to wear on me. At the guesthouse volunteers come and go, and because of an early curfew, building a community for myself outside of the hospital is incredibly difficult if not impossible.

So, after a week of fervent prayer and seeking counsel from family and friends I’ve made one of the hardest decisions of my life. To end my time of ministry with Hospitals of Hope. While I still stand behind what HOH is doing in the community here, it is no longer the place where I can best serve.

So where is the place that I can best serve now? Well I’m not sure. I considered and prayed about serving with another ministry here in Cochabamba, but none tugged at my heart, so instead I will be returning home and continuing to seek God’s guidance in this next season of life, wherever it may be. The only thing I know for certain is that I want to work with the youth again at my church (are you excited Linda?).

And to all of my supporters, thank you so much for your support through this time both financially and through prayer. I know without a doubt that I was supposed to spend these last two months in Bolivia. Even in this short amount of time God has worked tremendously and it was because of your support that any of my work here was possible. And for those wondering, I never reached my goal of $7500, which I realize was God’s plan all along, and for the remaining money raised, which after costs isn’t much, my plan is to continue to use the funds for missions, maybe with my churches Mexico trip or if God calls me to lead a trip for another organization. My time with missions definitely isn’t over, although I don’t know if long-term missions is in my future, at least not as a single woman.

I have a little over one week left in South America and I plan to make the most of it. It’s hard leaving a place I’ve fallen in love with and planned on building a life in, but I trust God, and if he’s leading me away I can only imagine what he has in store ūüôā


A beautiful day for a walk around my neighborhood. I’m going to miss this.


Come On A Tour With Me

Holy Smokes! It’s almost December, where did time go? ¬†I feel like I arrived in Bolivia just a couple weeks ago, not 8!

So, in honor of my upcoming 2 month anniversary I thought I would take you on a little tour of the building I call home, the HOH Guesthouse!

Admitedly, this building is pretty sweet. ¬†If you were picturing a hut with mosquito nets and the like, well… that was my life in Cambodia on the World Race and while that’s ok for a month, 10 would be hard (although I would do it if God wanted me to). ¬†So, I’m pretty thankful for the housing I’ve been given!

To start it off I’ll show you the view looking at the house. ¬†Aren’t those mountains amazing? ¬†The other day I was walking back from the Hospital, I stopped to look at the mountains and I just thought what an incredible artist God is. ¬†So incredible that even the greatest artists on earth can only mimic his work. ¬†Amazing.

The house is built in an H shape. ¬†The right side is the “girls wing” as well as were the family lives, and then the right side is the “guys wing” and also holds our TV room and kitchen/dining room.

Walking forward, this is our little front porch and garden. Doesn’t it look inviting? ¬†There used to be hammocks when I visited last year, but the hammocks gave way to tables. ¬†Often times I like to just sit on the porch to do work enjoying the fresh air.

Go in the front door, hang a right and then a left and you’ll find my bedroom, which looks a little like this…

I’d been dying to try that heart shaped photo collage since I saw it on Pinterest. ¬†I think it turned out pretty well. ¬†The small ones will be coming down soon, to make way for a new idea I have, which I’m pretty excited about!

Then when you turn around you see this. ¬†Yes ladies and gentlemen, I have two beds! ¬†And no I don’t sleep in both. ¬†So far, since I’ve been here I’ve had two roommates, although currently I have the room all to myself (yes!).

And no room would be complete without a bathroom, and in this situation the toilet and shower happen to be in separate little rooms, which is actually, really convenient.

Now, we’ll head out into the rest of the house. ¬†If I go a little more down the hall we get to the big girls dorm room. ¬†Right now there’s only on volunteer staying in it, but in the high season it’s packed!

Connecting the two wings of the house is a long hallway.

And right in the middle of the hallway, in the first spot you see when you open the front door, currently sits our Christmas Tree!

Get to the other end and hang a right and the first room you’ll come to is our TV room, which is also home to our wireless internet router, so we hang out in there a lot, as you can see my housemate Mackenzie doing in this picture!

Then , take the next door and you’ve arrived in the dining room!

And all dining rooms lead into kitchens right?  And ours is pretty sweet.  You can cook anything in there!

But the sweetest part about the kitchen aren’t the things we can make in it, it’s what I see when I open the door to the back porch…

Choco and Oscar! ¬†Our guesthouse mascots, who are both technically still puppies so I’m lucky to have grabbed this shot!

So that’s about it for the tour. ¬†There is more to the house, but you can only see so many bedrooms and bathrooms, and who really wants to see our laundry room?

So I’ll sign off from this post with one last picture, the view of the hospital from the guesthouse. ¬†I hope you enjoyed the tour!