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Derby to Edinburgh…

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We can’t believe we are already in Edinburgh, Scotland! The Lord has blessed our week in Derby.  From hanging out at local parks, to doing church events with Trinity Baptist Church, to ministry in Muslim communities, this week has been incredible. Bree wanted to share a little bit of her experience this week.

The first week of outreach has been action packed and a non-stopadventure. We have had so many cool experiences getting to share Christ with the people of Derby, England. One of the locations we have been able to spend time at is the cities skate park. The skate park is a local hot-spot, making it the perfect place to connect with thecommunity. I really enjoyed getting to know the people there, they were all so welcoming and friendly. It was disheartening to hear about the rough home lives and hard life circumstances that some of these young people were caught up in, but at the same time I am glad we had the opportunity to encourage them and share from our own life stories about the hope and joy found in Christ. These kids will definitely be in my thoughts and prayers as we continue on our outreach. -Bree

This week we have come together with other YWAMers in Edinburgh to help out with a ministry called Shine.  There is a huge festival every year in Edinburgh called the Fringe Festival, and Shine basically brings light to the people on the streets.  Please be praying for us this week as we perform, evangelize, cook, or whatever the Lord calls us to do!

Working as a part of the Shine team for the Fringe Festival in Edinburgh has been incredible.  We spend the afternoons on the Royal Mile, which is where is Fringe is located.  We hand out flyers, go on prayer walks, hang out with people in the streets, and do performances.   We also spend time in a Christian Heritage Center doing similar things.  We are blessed to serve the other members on the Shine team by cooking dinner for them, so we end the day cooking and cleaning.  Being here has really opened our eyes to the need of Jesus in the UK.  Tina wanted to share her experience here thus far:

This week has been filled with extraordinary opportunities that pushed each of us individually, to grow in our own creativity and push us outside of our comfort zone. We’ve been able to work as part of the Shine team, and with our teammates artistic skills and encouragement we’ve learned and performed group dances and assisted the media team with conducting street interviews.

One of my favorite memories that I’ll take away from our time inEdinburgh has been playing the piano at the Christian Heritage Center on the Royal Mile. My teammate Teresa and I had the chance to perform one afternoon when the church opened its doors to the community for a time of prayer and meditation. It was an incredible experience to worship in such a beautiful and historical setting. Teresa also had a chance later in the week to use her talents on the guitar to lead our Shine team in worship. I’ve really enjoyed listening to her perform, and use her talents to glorify God.

As our time in Scotland comes to an end, this week we’ll be continuing to assist the Shine team in street performances, group prayer walks, cooking for the base and supporting the team as they head out into some local venues to worship and spread God’s love into the community. Can’t wait to see what He has in store for us next. -Tina

Reaching Out to England!

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After two boats, three busses, and two planes, we made it to Derby, England! Thank you so much for all of your prayers.  We are blessed to stay at the YWAM base in Derby, and have felt very welcomed here.  It has been awesome getting to work with another YWAM base and such an opportunity to get to know the staff.  The first night we were welcomed with a traditional English dish called Daal.

We have already had some incredible ministry opportunities the Lord has blessed us with.  Friday we went to the local skate park and hung out with some of the local youth.  They were mostly ages around twelve to fifteen, and it was awesome just being able to hang out with them and love on them.  It was also entertaining to watch the guys on our team try and learn how to skateboard.  Saturday the girls did relational evangelism in the Muslim community, while the guys did street evangelism in the Muslim community.   Ramadan started last night, so it is a great time to do ministry in those areas.  Sunday we went to a local church, and Teresa and I were blessed with the opportunity to share our testimonies.  The encouragement we received from the church was overwhelming and empowering.  We then went on a prayer walk to a poor area in Derby called Stockbrook where we will be working frequently this week.  We are so excited to spend time there this week.  Last night a few of us went to a park with a guitar and brownies, and the Lord opened up doors for awesome conversation.  It is incredible to see how the Lord can use free desert and worship music for His glory.

It is very evident why the Lord has called us to Derby.  It is disheartening to see the apathy apparent in these people’s eyes.  Please be praying for us as we continue to do work in the skate park, Stockbrook, and the Muslim communities.  We can’t wait to update you on how the Lord is going to work this week!

Following His Leading

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Hello, my name is Chris Hagel a student in this May school.  We just completed our 5th week of our DTS with Jim Peterson speaking on the subject of leadership.  It was nice to have Jim speak regarding this subject for he has extensive experience as a leader.  I loved the topics he covered and I would like to share them all with you but we might be here for awhile!  So for your sake and mine, I will only cover a few.

We learned the 6 basic points of leadership: vision, get the right people, delegate, firm/flexible, reward success and deal with failure.  I find these extremely helpful and I will be able to apply them to any place or situation as a leader.  We also covered the attributes of a servant leader which are: being patient, kind, humble, respectful, selfless, forgiving, honesty and commitment. I really enjoyed this, because I am actively pursuing how to be a servant leader.  I find the leadership role extremely challenging but through time, persistence and hard work, my skills will improve and someday I will be an efficient and effective leader.

Our class is full of leaders; this is the time for me to be humble, courageous and studious, to learn as much as I can from them and our Destination Paradise leaders.  I feel that I can speak for all of us by saying we are all so grateful to be here.  We have an amazing team; each of us has our own unique gifts, talents and strengths.  Outreach is going to be a blast!  Thank you all for your love and support.

What is Worship?

Hello my name is Monique!  Praise and worship is something that I will never get sick of, and I think I can say that for everyone here. Every morning we all start our day with singing praises to God, I mean is there any better way to start off the day? We get to praise His holy name, rejoice in how awesome, powerful and gracious our God truly is. As a leadership based school we all take turns in leading praise, this may challenge us to get out of our comfort zone, but it’s a good challenge.

One way that we get to take charge of leading praise and worship is that every Thursday nights during our community meetings we have a worship team.  Team 1 drum roll please is…Teresa (she is so good that she is on both! She can play the guitar like no bodies business) Chris, and me (Monique), we are singers. Team 2 is…Teresa, Tina,(she can hold a beat with the bongos, and as soon she will be playing the piano) Bree, and Marvin, they also sing.  We rotate every week, and we all get a chance to lead the praise team. This consists of setting a date to practice, and getting songs together. Just recently we used the bongos, which sounded amazing thanks to my girl Tina!! Thursday’s seem to always come fast around the corner so we have to be on our feet, and be prepared. I love praising/singing on community nights you can really feel the Holy Spirit move.

There are so many ways that we can worship God. This past week our class was split up into two teams. Both the teams had to come up with a rap that showed integrity from the bible. For me I was like a deer caught in the headlights, I am a country white girl and cannot rap, or even come up with a rap. My team talked about Job; how God took everything he had, but Job still had his integrity to the Lord. The other team talked about David, and how he had integrity towards Saul, but also to the Lord. Doing the rap was a lot of fun; we all got dressed up and took the stage! It just goes to show that there are many way of praising God.

Praising God is so amazing, you can get up and dance;  have fun, or just being in awe of Him, either way when I praise God I feel his presence within me, and that is something that I will never get sick of! Can I Get a Halleluiah!! Praise the Lord!!!!

Running to Dive

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Running in the Right Direction…

My name is Becca and I have been blessed to be apart of the May 2011 Destination Paradise school.  A big part of my life is marathon running, and the Lord uses exercise as an act of worship in my daily walk with Him.  I was so excited that there are so many options for exercise here at Destination Paradise.  Of course there is a BEAUTIFUL beach to run on, and my favorite part of running here is the sunrise.  It is so beautiful, and every morning it is different.  It is such a cool thing to run and wake up to.  DP also has a set time in our schedule three days a week for working out.  In this time you have an option of doing a workout video, called Insanity.  I will not lie, I thought it was going to be a joke, but the video is really hard and it is such a good bonding time for our team and staff.  We laugh, sweat and jump in the pool right after.  It is one of my favorite times of the day.  There is also kayaking, sailing, spear fishing, and snorkeling for a great workout here at DP.  Last week for our small group time we went out kayaking and then attempted to spear fish.  Although we came back empty handed we got a good laugh.

When I came here, I thought I was going to have to let go of exercising, but that is not the case at all.  Destination Paradise has surpassed any expectation I had about exercising this summer.

Diving In…

Scuba diving has become a part of our weekend routine here on base. We are incredibly blessed to have the opportunity to dive in one of the most beautiful places on earth.  During our second week at DTS we became PADI certified divers, now with that we have the chance to do four dives each weekend (depending on the weather).

During our most recent dives we have seen sea turtles, sting rays, eels, hundreds of tropical fish and even SHARKS!  It’s an unexplainable, amazing feeling to breathe underwater and be able to see a part of God’s creation that only a small percentage of the world experiences. Every time we dive we find new and exciting things to share when we surface. The colors alone are worth the trip down under. We have seen breathtaking colors that rarely exist in nature, all the while we have floated in mid ocean. It’s a remarkable experience that I know we will never take for granted!


1000 Mile Ocean Sail

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With the decision to release the two YWAM DP Sailing Cats comes the need to relocate the boats to a place where they are more likely to sell quickly.  Presently the boats are in the boatyard in the Rio Dulce, Guatemala undergoing some bottom paining and a few repairs.  Wednesday the 18th of June, Chris and Josh Toney will sail one boat and Matt and Lori Stephens the other for the 1000 mile open ocean voyage from Livingston Guatemala to Ft. Lauderdale Florida.  The trip should take 7 or 8 days.  Please pray for good weather, great fellowship and a trip free of any mechanical difficulties.  Thanks!

Chris Toney