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Tour Update: Seattle!

  |   Alumni, News, Outreach   |   No comment

12026552_10207863533651468_2033535234_nDespite almost losing a tire in downtown Seattle, we had an awesome week staying with Lynn’s brother and his family. We got to spend some amazing time with Lynn’s daughter Jessie who so generously took us on a tour of Seattle. Unfortunately, after faithfully serving us for over 3,000 miles, our truck finally had to be towed and brought to a shop stranding us in the city. But, God is so good and he protected us all from harm, provided us with rides, and got us our vehicle back the next day! We were able to get back from the city in time to attend a young adult group at a church the Chris and Lynn Toney help plant! It was and amazing time of fellowship where we were able to share with the group what we do at YWAM and speak into people’s lives. A group of guys we met that night came over the next day and spent the afternoon playing volleyball with us. We all connected really well and quickly became vulnerable. We shared or stories, our present struggles, and encouraged each other. The next day they invited us to the beach where we enjoyed some competitive spikeball followed by sushi and lot a of great conversation.

12029124_10207863533731470_566477011_nThe night before we left for Vancouver we went bowling with the same group and stayed out until 1am, not wanting to say goodbye. Because of the short amount of time we were able I spend with those boys, one of them who had never heard of ywam before we met decided to do a DTS this year. He beamed as he told us that he can’t remember the last time he was this excited about anything. He is ready to abandon everything for Christ and we are so excited for him! As we drove away from the states and onto our last stop in Vancouver, I couldn’t help but thank God for those moments – the moment when someone gets it and says “yes” to Jesus. We have been blessed to facilitate and witness so many of those moments on this tour.

12023149_10207863533251458_751882034_nBefore we ventured into Canada we were able to meet up with Leanna from Megan and Donavon’s DTS and with a group of friends we had met almost two months at Creation Fest! It was so fun to reconnect and see friends we didn’t think we’d ever see again. It meant a lot to us and them that we were able to see each other again.

As out time in the states has come to a close, and we are now starting our last week of ministry in Vancouver, we’ve been able to reflect and see how much God has truly blessed us. He united us as a team, strengthened us, protected us, gave us boldness, and brought us into so many divine appointments. Week are looking forward to more of this to come in our last week! Thank you all for your prayers, we have certainly felt them!

11997008_10207759620613707_1568460027_nAmanda Harris – Staff

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In the Wilderness With the Almighty

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“The more we let God take us over, the more truly ourselves we become – because He made us. He invented us. He invented all the different people that you and I were intended to be. . .It is when I turn to Christ, when I give up myself to His personality, that I first begin to have a real personality of my own.” ― C.S. Lewis

unnamed (2)Lately I’ve been pondering, what does it mean to know God? Do I really know Him? Does my daily relationship with the Lord look how I say it does? How do I continue to seek Him more and more everyday? How do I bring Him into my daily life, into everything I am doing? Because if I don’t truly know God, then how can I make Him known?

I think so often I forget what this whole relationship is about. I get so caught up in knowing the historic Jesus, knowing the facts, the stories, and forget what it is to know Jesus today, right now, in every moment. I constantly find myself only turning to God when I need something, asking for His blessing over this or that, asking Him to make everything work out for me. That’s not always a bad thing, but why not ask God what He wants for my life, how I can serve Him, and obey His call?

unnamed (1)I often find myself trying to trust God’s plan for my life and I wonder why it can be so hard and so scary to step out in faith. It’s not easy to trust a plan when you don’t know where it will take you, when you don’t know what is around the next corner, when you don’t feel like you have any more strength to climb the next mountain that you run into. Let me put it this way, if you found a random note telling you to meet a random person in a random place I think you would be a little sketched out, I know I would. But if you found a random note from your best friend telling you to meet them in a random place then it wouldn’t be quite as scary. This is how it should be with Jesus! If we are trusting in a plan from a person we don’t truly know, then of course it is going to be scary. But, if we truly know Jesus and have relationship with Him then we are not trusting in the scary plans He has for our lives, but we are trusting in a person who will walk with us through the crazy plans He asks us to obey.

Recently I was reading the story in Luke 4 when the Spirit sends Jesus into the wilderness. There He was tempted and went through some hard things. Often we face similar trials, we are “sent into the wilderness” and our faith is tested. In these trials though, we become confused and wonder why in the world God would send us into the wilderness. Why would God, our Father who loves us, allow us to go through hard things and be tempted? We think something is wrong, but really we don’t avoid the wilderness because we are children of God, we go through it because we are His children and He loves us. We have to make the choice to trust God in the midst of temptation, trials, and the hard times in the wilderness. We have to make the choice to resist the devil and to grasp the true freedom the can only be found through God, God’s way. We must lean on God, for His love and the power of the Spirit will anchor us in the wilderness.

unnamed (3)If we don’t lean on Him, and do everything anchored in Him and covered in His love we are wasting our time. The more that we lean into God and let Him take ahold of our lives, the more we begin to understand who we really are, and why God has given us each a our specific call on our lives. This is what I have been learning, to abide in Jesus every hour of every day, in every decision I make, to walk away from predictability and go into the unknown. To continue to surrender my life daily, so that I can begin to know Jesus more and because I know Him more, to know myself and my true identity in Christ more. It can be scary to take a leap into the unknown, but once you hit the water it is so worth it. We have to recognize that our fear comes when we look back on a place where we knew security, and when we look forward into the unknown. Lean on Jesus, give Him your complete love and devotion, and trust that He will bring you through the wilderness.

It has definitely been a challenging season for me in returning to Belize. Working on maintenance for the base was not what I was expecting to do, it has been a season of “walking through the wilderness” with God. But I continually remind myself that I am not alone, God brought me here for a reason and I am here to obey that call, not to always understand it. I can’t do any of it by myself, and every day Jesus wants me to rely on Him, to rely on His strength, and to seek Him more. So I have started to make the times I am working by myself times where I seek God, rather than sulking about and being upset with being on maintenance. God is teaching me to trust Him deeper, to be okay with going into the unknown with Him these next two years on staff, and to have fun in the process whether I am on maintenance or DTS staff or outreach or wherever He places me. Everyday God continues to show me areas of my life that I need to fully hand over to Him. Areas that I need to have more humility, relationships I need to work on, what it looks like to serve Him and others everyday in the work that I am doing. But He is good through it all, and I love living life with Him.

Josh Mason – Staffunnamed

 

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Tour Update: Reno, Chico, Joshua Fest

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11998433_10207799648854388_1616913749_nI never would’ve thought I’d be wearing two pairs of socks, two pairs of pants, a hoodie, a vest, and a beanie (or toque if you’re Canadian) in California! We’ve certainly discovered over the past week that not all of California is made up of sunny coast!

12000079_10207799649534405_1499367107_nDespite the freezing temperatures of the night we had an amazing last week in California. We actually started the week in Reno, Nevada where we were able to share our stories with a young adult group. An unexpected stop on our tour turned out to be an incredible blessing from God as we connected really well with some of the people there. We were able to pray with a girl who has been thinking about doing a DTS for years now. A few days later, she came to visit us at Joshua Fest and told us the awesome news that after talking and praying with us she knew she was going to do a DTS in Belize!! We’re so stoked and know that God brought us to Rachel to speak into her life.

12000041_10207799649854413_1532398361_nThe rest of our four day stay at Joshua Fest was filled with great music, prayer, and fellowship with other YWAMers. We were able to be a part of a prayer tent that was being run by The YWAM base in Chico, CA. They truly blessed us. At the prayer tent we were able to fellowship with them as well as prayer for people at the festival. I even got a shoutout from a band I got to pray for!

11999904_10207799647374351_1279634647_nNow we have officially left the Golden state and after a quick pit stop in Oregon we are back in the great area of Seattle! We are wanting to finish strong and press even more into God so that we can stay united as a team. We are praying that we’ll meet as many people as we can in these next couple weeks so come hangout with us if you’re in the Seattle area!

11997008_10207759620613707_1568460027_nAmanda Harris – Staff

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Counseling, Horses, and a Calling

  |   FCM, Lecture Phase   |   No comment

10614123_10203239886452749_6906134846106134560_nHey everyone! Camille here, FCM student at our lovely YWAM DP. Wow, what a beautiful season of growth it has been. God never ceases to amaze me in how he speaks, teaches and stretches me, each day.

We are gonna quickly jump back a few steps… to pre-FCM. I received a Facebook message, suggesting I prayerfully consider coming to do the Foundations in Counseling ministries (for July of 2014). “HA! ya right!” I said aloud. “I ain’t meant to sit on a couch all day”. Alas, God had something else in mind and, long story short, guess where I am a year and a half later?

The Lord showed me and continues to reveal, that being a counselor isn’t just a title and it doesn’t even need to be your career, it’s a lifestyle. I’m learning more and more how God has created me- with compassion for the hurting and a desire to reach the broken. As Christ-followers, people ARE our mission: to be the hands and feet of Jesus, to be the light of the world, to be hope, and to make disciples of all nations.

His Word says it so perfectly:

Isaiah 61:1-2 (NLT) “The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is upon me, for the Lord has anointed me to bring good news to the poor. He has sent me to comfort the brokenhearted and to proclaim that captives will be released and prisoners will be freed. He has sent me to tell those who mourn that the time of the Lord’s favor has come…”

This is who I am. I have been created to partner with Christ in this mission.

IMG_1769SO, what is my “mission field”? you may ask. I believe it will involve lots of hooves, halters and manure (yep). The Lord has given me a crazy passion for horses and I have so much joy when working with these incredible creatures! I first discovered “Equine Therapy” on a road trip, three years ago and was immediately captivated. I read about the miraculous healing (physically, emotionally, mentally, etc.) that was taking place in children and young adults simply through interactions with horses. “Wow.” I thought, “God, I want to be part of what you’re doing in this.” How awesome that He is able to take my compassion for the broken and bring it together, in harmony with my love for horses! To come along-side the addicted, the traumatized, fearful, autistic, paraplegic, depressed and lonely and to FULLY love them with the Father’s love.

FCM is equipping me for the adventure ahead. I’m honored and blessed to be here, learning how to counsel the lost and point them toward hope and freedom. I’m discovering more of who God is and am diving deeper in love with my Maker. I don’t know what the future holds-but I trust that He will prepare me for the journey ahead. Here I am Lord, send me.

“Nevertheless, I will bring health and healing… I will heal my people and will let them enjoy abundant peace and security.” Jeremiah 33:6

Camille Knospe – FCM Student, July, 2015IMG_0205 (1)

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Tour Update: Yosemite!

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11948118_10207759620493704_984593374_nThis past week God has given us some time to rest and recharge as we prepare for a busy last couple of weeks on the road! We spent a few days in Yosemite soaking up God’s glorious creation and enjoying the company of old (and new) friends.

 

 

11950836_10207759669054918_88176156_nWe reconnected with the most beautiful Shea, who is currently staffing at YWAM Yosemite. The Yosemite base is new and is preparing for their second ever DTS starting this week! We enjoyed helping them prepare for the new students. Donavon and Martin helped out with a woodworking project and Megan and I assisted with the more artsy projects.

We departed from Yosemite and made a last minute pit stop in Reno, Nevada where we were warmly welcomed by previous staff members Trevor and Whitney! We are enjoying their company now, and looking forward to meeting and speaking to the youth from their church tonight!

11944958_10207759620653708_1085166010_nSince we’ve been on the road for more than five weeks now, we’re starting to wear out more easily. As a team God’s really been teaching us about intentionality at what it looks like to keep our team centered around Him. If we continue to keep our focus on Jesus we know we can finish strong!

We’re off to spend our last few days in California volunteering at Joshua Fest. It’s sad to say goodbye to California but we know God has more amazing stuff in store for us up north!

Amanda Harris – Staff

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