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Calling All Men

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Going back a few years now, some time around 2010 I found myself sitting in an empty room right after dismissing the students to go out and meditate on what was taught. As manblogstaff I was not required to spend this time seeking God. I thought to myself “well I’m staff and I don’t have to do this” but again I found that the room was quite empty. I closed my eyes and said to myself “okay God, what do you have for me?”

Almost immediately a picture flooded my mind. I saw a great stone hall, so large that it disappeared into its own darkness as the only area lit by torches was around the throne. Massive pillars held up the ceiling and were spread far enough apart to allow manbloglarge round wooden tables to fit in between. Each table had ten to twelve chairs assigned to it. All of this was focused around the great throne, elevated to view all and everything in the room and to establish authority.

My view of this great hall was right next to the throne looking down on the tables. I could see the throne out of the corner of my eye but did not look at it. I noticed men sitting at manblog6the tables but there were one maybe two at the most at each table. They were not dressed as such but I knew (as one does in a dream) that they were knights.

The end! No really that was all I saw of the picture. Over the next few days maybe even weeks I prayed into this picture and did research on knights and how they may represent something more. Now the comparison of men and knights has been done, maybe over done and truthfully can be a bit corny. For the sake of you the reader we will skip these connections, minus two. They were given great authority and were big targets in battle. manblog1Remember these…

At the end of the “vision” God asked me one question. “Why are there so many empty chairs” (it’s bold because that’s how I imagine God speaks!) anyways, this question stuck in my mind like a corn kernel between your teeth (you know what I mean) and it drove me to find an answer. An answer I received…

A quick look at the current condition of the world will show manlessness (made it up) as in fatherless families, even a lot of families with fathers still find a lack of a man in the house. Pornography should be considered a plague, integrity has lost importance… The manblog4list goes on far too long. The specific reasons for these atrocities are for another discussion, but the overall reason I believe goes back to the vision.

God created Man and Woman, each with roles and strengths. If spiritual warfare is a real thing (which it is) then the best way to win is to take out the knights right? Take out the family structure. Take out the ones carrying the banner of the King; demoralize the troops under them and its easy pickings. We have an entire week committed to father wounds here! Something is wrong! We know the end, Jesus wins, it’s determined and we look forward to that day. But for now the battle rages on and we men are being picked manblog3off…

It’s time to get off our knees and stop letting the enemy run spears through us (gross? It’s true!) Stand up! It’s not enough to just not do wrong it’s time to choose right even when no one is looking. Especially when no one is looking. So many exclamations! We here at DP are striving for this as a community and as individuals. We are exploring what it even means to be a man after Gods own heart, what it looks like practically and spiritually. I could go on for 6 more pages but for the sake of short attention spans we’ll wrap up.

manblog7What’s my point? … There are a lot of empty chairs; seats of authority given to us by God Himself that are collecting dust. It breaks Gods heart, it robs Him of glory and the consequences are… Well they are listed above. Rise up take your seat! If this Is something on your heart, consider joining us here at YWAM DP. If not, find a friend, a father, a church leader and discuss this! It’s worth discussing; it’s worth fighting for.

Jeremy McArthur- YWAM DP Staff

Deeper

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Diving in and going for more. Maturing in our direction and understand of God and the plan he has for us in life. Experiencing a shift in our lives and gaining a deeper awareness of who God is. Not only an awareness but an understanding (full comprehension), seeing things from all angles and what different perspectives contain. The schooldock really put a big emphasis on maturity and becoming mature in the TRUTH so that we as believers are not tossed around back and forth any longer by the lies of the enemy and the things of the world and sticking with the job we have been given until it is finished. She believes that this school is about Scraping off everything that is not of God.

For me personally God has really hit me hard this week, in a good but hard way. God has told me that I hold the rope in my hands and it is up to me how deep I am going to go. I think it is amazing that this is the words they have got from God about what this school is going to be about because this is EVERYTHING i have been needing in my life. God has dts studentsspoke to me a lot this week and really challenged me with the question:
“Colleen, are you willing to SURRENDER ALL no matter the cost and the circumstances?” At first my answer ( not just this week but in the past months) was of course I am! But then God said, “are you really?” That is when it hit me, I have been telling God and others that I am surrendering all but in reality there are some things that I have not let go of purposely! One of those being CONTROL. Control over a lot of areas of my life.
I know now that I am here in Belize to surrender EVERYTHING because until I do I can not go out into the world and bring His light to the nations. God has pretty much placed me in a spot where I get to choose to let go and live my calling or I can hold on and loose the blessings that He has for me. Today, girlsI chose to let go. It was one of the hardest things I will have to do and I am going to have to be proactive in this and let go over and over again. But I did it because I know that apart from Jesus, everything is MEANINGLESS. God has brought me here to this wonderful place to revive me, turns my desserts into streams of joy and fill me so I can be used for His glory.

I am ready and I surrender all.

Colleen House- September 2013 DTS Student

God’s Calling in Sri Lanka

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travel

Travel

Planes, trains, automobiles and boats. That was our mode of transportation in our 3.5 days of travel. From Belize to Mexico, from Mexico to the States, from the States to Turkey and finally to Sri Lanka. What a trip, an adventure for sure. Amazingly it was one of the smoothest travel experiences I’ve been on. No real waits at security or customs (I think the longest was 15min) in fact in Sri Lanka we literally just walked through security because nobody was around including guards. Throughout our trip we had a ton of time to kill, most of it we spent sleeping in odd areas or playing random card games. Matt probably got the most sleep out of all of us, every time we looked at him he was passed out in some strange angle. We all arrived safely to the YWAM base in Sri Lanka, and it’s incredible here. Even though it’s not that far off from the road, it seems secluded and there is a sense of peace that we’ve all been able to enjoy in the mornings. Well.. except for the Catholic church next door which seems to think that ringing their bells at 5:30am every morning is a good idea. A few of us are plotting ways to cut the ropes. And so after a couple days rest, a bit of shopping and a train ride that everyone will remember (There is always more room for another person on the train) we moved onto..

Ministry

1393190_10152300829529126_186458281_nI could go on and on about how amazing this week has been so far for ministry. But I’m just going to quickly summarize some of the things we’ve done. We began by meeting with our first contact, who brought us to an area on the beach where there are a few homes (huts) and a circle of chairs waiting for us. The beach was incredible! It makes me miss home, seeing the crashing waves (though they are about 4 times larger than what I’m used to). Where we were sitting was actually a spot where they are planting a new church. They told us that it should be built in the next couple of months, and they wanted us to pray for the land. They also told us that, us just being there was an answer to a vision that they had, which to me is super cool. The next day we were brought to a few different homes, where we would go in, introduce ourselves and talk for a bit. At every house just about that, we visited. they would give us coffee and cookies, and to not be rude you take some, but you know it’s bad when you have to develop a way to decline cookies (I mean seriously, I don’t really want to gain weight on Outreach). After coffee, or the time of visiting, we would pray together (Korean style if that means something to you) for the family and what their needs were. Then we’d move onto the next house. We did this for a few homes, and at the final home we had a bit of fellowship time, some worship, I did a small sermon on Revelation 3:20, had dinner and prayed for the family there. That was the day, incredible for sure!
The next form of Ministry that we did was youth ministry on Saturday. This was held on the beach near the church plant. We were told to expect 25-30 kids, maybe a bit less, and somebody thought it would be a good idea to pray for more. And God answered. We had matt kids 1probably close to 90 kids that day, and they were all excited to be there. So we played Soccer, made Balloon Animals, Face Painting, Skits and just hung out with the kids for awhile. Eventually we moved on to the Youth event, where we had another Skit, some worship and Matt did his testimony, which was great it’s super impactful and hits me every time. After we were invited to the spot by the church again where we did some fellowship, some worship, a funny game where you act out what’s on a slip of paper (I got blind man ironically), and later prayed for a large group of people in the huts. That day was so perfect, it’s so hard to even try and explain it. You’d really just have to be there.
Finally Sunday, it was an early morning for all of us (ignoring the fact that the Catholic church rings its bells at 5:30am everyday) because we were off to church. So we were out of the house by 7am and on the bus a few minutes later. The typical 3 bus rides and we found ourselves outside of a church (though you’d probably never know it from passing by). We were asked to do a skit and Patrick also told his testimony. Afterwards, the Pastor (who is super cool and a good connection) had us go through the congregation praying for those who wanted it which was everyone. Now for me, that would be something I’m normally incredibly uncomfortable with. But amazingly it just felt right. At one point there was a man standing in front who I already prayed for, and someone asked me “hey did you pray for that guy?” “Yes” I replied. A couple minutes later Cassidy came up to me and asked “hey did you already pray for that guy?” “Oh yeah I did earlier” I replied.. then the man came up to me and asked if he could talk to me, pulling me to the side of the room . He confessed that he’s been struggling with his faith and he needed help, and so we stood there and I really prayed for him. Looking back at it, people say when something comes from God, often it’s repeated again and again. Even though I already prayed for him, two people asked me if I did, and then he himself asked me to pray for him. It’s just cool to see God work, even if I’m still working on hearing him myself.

Liam Ditty- July 2013 DTS Student

Losing My Life

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micah4Well the BSN (Bible School for the Nations) has come to a conclusion and I am once again back home in Sterling, CO. The last six months have been an incredible time of growth in many aspects of my life, but the last month and a half is where I grew the most. In the final month and a half of the BSN we ran two BELT (Biblical Education and Leadership Training) seminars. One was in a community called San Mateo in Belize and the other was in a small village named Poko in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. After finishing our seminar in San Mateo our BSN team split into two smaller teams. Myself and four others set off for the Congo while the other four set their sights on Nepal. Unlike DTS (Discipleship Training School) we were personally responsible for booking our own travel to get to Entebbe, Uganda.  Seven days later, during which we took three MAF flights and a twelve hour truck ride through the jungle, we arrived in Poko. To be honest it looked very similar to what you see in National Geographic.

micah1

We were in a small village made of mud huts with grass roofs and there was no power or running water. (The people did wear clothes though) The church in which we were teaching was a larger brick building with a tin roof and we stayed in a smaller brick house. The church had selected volunteers who took care of our every need including cooking meals for us. Since I have returned home, almost everyone that I have talked to has asked me how the food was there. Before I left I tried to enjoy all the food I could thinking that the food would be horrible in Africa and I would not be eating much, but much to my surprise the food was amazing. We did eat many “weird” things while we were there such as grubs, monkey brains, and goat intestines, but there were very few things that myself or the people on my team did not like. With the volunteers from the church taking care of all our needs we were given plenty of time to prepare our teachings for the seminar and sermons for churches on Sunday.

micah

Unlike the seminar in Belize where our maximum attendance was 14, we had close to 200 people fill the church in which we were teaching, and almost all of them were pastors or leaders in the church. Luckily, public speaking does not scare me because I was assigned to teach the first day of the seminar. The first lesson in the BELT curriculum is about pursuing truth and how truth applied in one’s life will bring freedom and joy as well as more success (success defined in biblical terms) in ministry. The next day the attendance had gone up so I must have not done too horrible of a job teaching (either that or my translator did a great job making me sound good). I had the opportunity to teach three lessons during the belt seminar, give two sermons in two different churches, and teach twice for a bible college. My teammates would make fun of me because it seemed as though every time I taught the people in the audience would cry. I loved teaching and I feel that the Holy Spirit has gifted me in that area. Coming back from Africa made me realize how much I loved the people there. They were the nicest people I have ever met. I have heard so many people say what I am about to say and it saddens me to see how blinded western cultures are by materialism because these people who have next to nothing and probably make less in a year than a minimum wage employee makes in a month are so full of joy and are the most hospitable people I have ever been around. I did not think I would, but I miss hearing the children run out of the huts screaming mandeli (white person), I miss walking around the village and seeing a smile on every single person’s face, and I miss the simplicity of life in Poko. I would love to go back to the DRC in the future. God blesses you.

Micah Hampton- April 2013 BSN Student

Embrace Emotions

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mel blog As someone who loves engaging in deep, meaningful conversations and who has a heart for counseling, I usually consider myself one who is comfortable with emotions and the raw reality of a hurting world. But in week seven of the FCM, as we talked about anger, fear and depression, I came to realize that I often don’t call out my own feelings for what they are. I know there is a level of awareness to my hurt and struggles but to use words such as “painful, hurt, terrified, angry” often makes me uncomfortable. As I discovered this, I realized I wasn’t alone.

mel blog1It seems to be that within the Christian circle, we are often afraid of our negative emotions. Anger is viewed as a sin and fear is viewed as having  weakness. Being hurt means you’re not unified as the body of Christ and being disappointed means you are lacking hope.  It is true that God calls us to love others and reacting out of anger can quite often be unloving; and  it’s also true that we should walk out in unity, hope and trust. However, the reality is that anger and fear, and any other negative emotion, will be present in our life at some point. We will all be hurt by someone else’s words, fight against fear (ex. fear of spiders, failure, death), be disappointed in a relationship, experience a difficult transition …the list goes on. So what then do we do?

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I believe that it’s as simple and as challenging as being real before God. Psalm 139 is a beautiful visual of God knowing us intricately. From our thoughts to our habits, He knows us. Yet, David asks God, the omniscient one, to search his heart. I believe that God needs to help us understand ourselves. Because of our natural tendency to self-protect, we are often blind to what is really going on within. I’ll admit that it’s often uncomfortable and painful to see the darkness inside my heart and mind, but until I do I will never know the power of His holiness nor the reality of His bountiful mercy and grace.

-Melissa Mireless- July 2013 FCM Student