About :: AboutFamily :: AboutMission
Ray :: Tammy
Ray Oostdyk

I was born in New Jersey in a loving Christian home.  My parents have always been faithful attending and making sure I was in church.  I remember being taught in Sunday school to act how Jesus would act and do what Jesus would do, but I didn’t know why.  At age 5, I remember my Sunday school teacher explaining to us that Bible says one day we will all die and either go to Heaven or Hell.  There was one problem though; sin separates us from God.  In Romans 3:23 the Bible says, “All have sinned and come short of the Glory of God."  There was nothing I could do to make up for my sin.  I had to trust Christ in order to obtain eternal life with Him.  That day I turned from my sins and asked Jesus to come into my heart and be my personal Savior. From that moment on I knew Jesus would live in my heart and be my Friend and Savior.  I now wanted to live to please him instead of living to please myself.

Since childhood I have always been interested in aviation. I remember my mom frantically looking for me in the airport terminal while staring outside the glass watching airplanes take-off and land.  I dreamed that someday I would be a pilot.

In 1990, God brought a special opportunity when I moved to VA.  I was able to take a mission’s trip to El Paso, TX where I first experienced flying a small plane.  After experiencing the excitement of flight traveling to Mexico with a missionary pilot, I returned home and told my parents I wanted to learn to fly.   They were supportive of the idea, but financially it wasn’t a good time.  I prayed that God would somehow provide the opportunity.  Within only a couple of months my prayer was answered when my mom saw an ad in the newspaper to earn a pilot’s license for free!  I applied and was accepted to start my sophomore year at William Fleming High School in Roanoke, VA.  That year I went on a retreat with my youth group and surrendered my life to Christ.

The more I pursued a career with the airlines, the more the Holy Spirit made me realize I wasn’t in God’s will.  Through my grandfather and previous experiences with mission aviation, the Lord's will made sense to use my skills to serve the Lord as a missionary pilot.  I prayed about several schools and found Moody Bible Institute and Piedmont Bible College to have the best missionary aviation programs.  Moody won, although I had no idea I would meet my future wife there.  Only God knew Tammy, who grew up in Venezuela as a missionary kid, would be at the same school in Chicago.  I completed my two years of Bible training in Chicago and finished up my two years of technical aviation maintenance training in Elizabethton, TN May 2001.  During my last year at Moody, I visited several mission aviation agencies and worked side by side with several of them. I was interested in all of the mission agencies but Tammy and I both believed Missionary Flights Int'l to be the "perfect fit".  My previous airline and maintenance training fit exactly what the Lord prepared me for with MFI.

My desire is not to make the mistakes I have made in the past, but to keep Christ in the center of my daily decisions.  I am so thankful for my salvation and relationship with Jesus Christ that I want to use all God has gifted me to help to tell others of His love so they can know Him also.