DTS

Central Asia Outreach: It’s Only the Beginning

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It’s Only the Beginning

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I don’t think it really hit us until we were thousands of feet above the ground, flying over California, and getting “comfortable” for our fourteen hour flight to Central Asia. Tears began to fill my eyes as the realization of what our team was doing and the gravity of how much we would need the strength and guidance of Dad on this trip started to sink in.

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Upon arrival to our location we were rushed into an elevator by a woman and were loaded into a van that would take us to our first destination, our hotel. We were all very jet lagged but also very excited as we passed huge skyscrapers and tried to communicate with our driver through technology and hand signals. We ended up staying at a local’s hotel and called this our home for the first week. Chopsticks, no contacts, unfamiliar land, and tiredness made us turn to Dad for strength and for Him to lead us on. We learned to cook rice and noodles in our hotel rooms, a little hesitant to eat what didn’t look recognizable on the streets, while short-circuiting the power in the hotel…. Oops. Exploring was breathtaking and the cultural differences were shocking as we tried to become accustomed to the culture and love on the people the best we could.

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At last we met Jason, a gift from Dad, that led us to soup filed dumplings, an amazing skyline, and the hope that we were here for a reason. We were invited to our first fellowship where it was refreshing to look upon the One we serve and become more dedicated to the mission and cause. We celebrated Easter weekend as a family, with Jason of course, feeling the call of Dad to stay in our first city yet another week. There’s no doubt in my mind this will be an experience of a lifetime and we will learn that giving is better than receiving.

 

Michaela Ragsdale – DTS Student, January, 2015

 

Week One in St Lucia

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Hey its Katherine giving you an update on our first week here. So before we even left the country we were blessed in the Belize City airport. While sitting in the airport we sat near a couple who were eager to hear where we were going and the things we were going to do. After talking to us, they decided blessed us each with $20 U.S for dinner that night in the Dallas airport because of how excited we were for American food.

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We arrived at the Vieux Fort, St Lucia airport about 1 pm the next day.  As we were going through the immigration line and were called to the stand the lady had a name tag on her shirt and instead of a name there was a verse written on it and it read Ephesians 3:17.  We were so surprised to see this because Ephesians 3 has been the passage that we have used as a theme for our outreach. It was such a reassurance to our team that God has gone before us is anointing this trip and has joined with us to spread His love to the people in this country.

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The week started slow, some of the girls weren’t feeling well for a while Thursday we had a Bible study at the house where people from the community are welcome to come. It was fun to get to know some of the ladies in the neighborhood and hear their life stories.

One day I went down to the river behind the house and sat on a big rock praying in the quiet when a man came down the hill to cross the river.  He greeted me, saw that I had my Bible beside me and asked me what I was doing. I asked him if he was a Christian and his words were “I guess so” he said hesitantly and then asked me if id read something from Bible. So I did and we had great conversation of about Gods love for us.

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Easter Sunday we got the opportunity to speak at a local church. We were greeted and welcomed by each person that came that morning. While in church we shared our testimonies, put on a skit and most of us got to share something, all in all it was a great experience and the a lot of the church members were touched by what we had to share with them. Then in the evening we went to a different church where Rachael daughter of the couple we are staying with had a Easter play that they had been working for a long time. It was a long day and we were ready for bed.

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These are just a few of the many opportunities and experiences we have had during our time here so far. God has been working through us in all kinds of ways, from a simple conversation with someone, to stepping out of our comfort zones and speaking in front of a local Church. I can’t wait to see what else God has planned for the next 6 weeks to come! Keep watching as we continue to update you weekly with stories and the work we are doing her in this beautiful country.

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Katherine Peters, DTS – January, 2015

Come In April

  |   Alumni, DTS, Lecture Phase, News   |   No comment

Our April DTS is fast approaching and as our YWAM DP staff, and community have been praying we have sensed that the Lord is orchestrating something exciting for this DTS. As we have prayed and listened, we as a base have a great expectancy for the awesome things God WILL do in this school!
As our YWAM DP community has prayed for this upcoming school, a few past students wanted to share their experience in the hopes of encouraging others to embrace the adventure.

“My DTS experience was by far the most impactful event of my faith journey. I learned more about the Lord, others, and myself than I ever anticipated learning in a five-month period. I continue to be transformed by Him and daily see the fruits of the foundation that was built during that time — I’m ridiculously thankful for the knowledge, growth, experiences and relationships that came from doing a DTS with YWAM DP!” 

-Katie Bell (September 2013)

“My DTS experience was less of a walk of faith, and more of a beginning to a journey of faith. God began the long process of planting good things in me, and pulling out my weeds. I there began to understand God’s overwhelming love for me, and how much I need him in my day to day life.”

-James Foster (September 2014)

“I did my DTS last April and that is when Jesus completely captivated me and ruined me for the ordinary! My DTS was much more than just an experience, it was an amazing foundation for the rest of my life in relationship with Jesus. It helped me understand more about my purpose on this earth and what it means to live out Jesus’s greatest commandment of loving Him with your everything and loving others. I am so grateful for stepping out in huge faith and choosing to do my DTS last April, I will never be the same.”

-Stef Rosu (April 2014)

For those of you considering a DTS we want to encourage you to go ahead and take the first step by contacting us. Regardless of whether or not you have everything all sorted out, or are even sure about attending, let us give you the tools and information to help you decide. Adventure rarely comes without a bit of risk, so we challenge you to step out, and invite us to be apart of the awesome things God has in store for you!

And for those that have completed a DTS already, you can testify that the experience is one of a kind, and life changing almost seems to fall short in the description of it. As we pray in this April school we invite you to pray along side of us, as well as engage in our community by sharing our posts and photos on Instagram and Facebook with #comeinapril

Will Richardson – DP Staff

 

A letter to supports.

  |   Alumni, DTS   |   No comment

This is a letter written to an alumni’s support team after her DTS was complete.

Dear friends, family, and everyone who supported me through my 5 month journey with YWAM,

I cannot even begin to describe how grateful I am for all of y’all. From the prayers to financial support, to encouragements when I needed them, I want to say thank you. Thank you for your obedience to God which enabled me to grow as a daughter in Christ like never before. These last 5 months changed me, because you all supported me through it. Without the financial support, prayers, and encouragement, I wouldn’t have been able to do any of it. I would not have been able to learn about God’s loving father heart towards me, that changed everything. I would not have been able to have been poured into and gain freedom with Christ from all past bondage that held me back from walking confidently in Him. I would not have been able to scuba dive and bask in our God’s beautiful creation. I would not have been able to build relationships with some of the best people i have ever met. I would not have been able to go and serve children, orphans, missionaries, and others, in Bolivia. I would not have been able to eat cow heart, or see the tallest altitude lake in the world (Lake Titicaca). I would not have been able to lead worship for a church full of village people who traveled hours and hours, just to hear more about God. I would not have been able to learn what it looks like to truly serve, and rely on God for all comfort and joy. I would not have been able to feel more of God’s love, by how each and every one of you have loved me through this experience. I am forever grateful, and overwhelmed by how your generosity, has changed my life forever. How God changed my life forever. Thank you for all of your love, kindness, and friendship. I am blessed to know all of you,and blessed by God through your prayers, giving, and encouragement. Thank you!!!!!

Here’s a video I made of my experiences in Bolivia. Please watch it to see how your love, generosity, and prayers, enabled me to serve there.

Bolivia outreach video

Shea Salisbury – 2014 DTS Alumni

Home is wherever He is!

  |   DTS, Lecture Phase   |   No comment

Well, we all went to the main land for an awesome day of adventure! We woke up at 5 am and after a long and fun day of zip lining, cave tubing, and seeing the Mayan ruins, we had a 2 hour car ride back plus an hour and half boat ride back to the YWAM base…so we got home at 8 pm. 10854396_10203593644024940_1963647624303798347_oWe were wet and cold from the cave tubing and swimming in the water. It was stormy outside, so the boat was so rocky and water was spraying in…we were all tired from a long day and a lot of traveling. We started to sing silly songs like Kumbia and other silly songs, but than we started to sing praise and worship songs the whole way home; an hour and a half of praise to God. I personally forgot how cold I was, I forgot the bumpy boat and the water spraying in. I also forgot about the awesome day we just had. It was so awesome to hear the whole team come together despite feeling sea sick and tired, we got to sing to God. 10960251_10203593597743783_4215106994522248162_oIt brought me back to the true heart of worship. Not the sound, not the music, not the voices, or how good the guitarist is and how the worship leader did. It was simply an out of tune, whole heartily praise to our King and our Father. We sang songs like: You Raise Me Up, Come thou Fount, Shout to The Lord, and many many more. We also sang “He’s got the whole world in His hands,” but then we started to substitute in things like “He’s got YWAM students in his hands,” “He’s got our outreach trips in his hands,” “He’s got YWAM staff in his hands,” “He’s got Sam and Carlos in his hands.” (They were the captains of the boat, we got to know them really well over the last few months). Sometimes you got to declare to God what belongs to Him and let Him know I put my fears and my life in your hands!!

For me this taught me a valid lesson of HOME. I realized home isn’t my bed here at YWAM, home isn’t my parents house back in New York. Home isn’t with my family, home isn’t Christmas time around the tree, home isn’t in my room. Home is wherever He is. Home is being in the presence of the Lord. The more I realize that, the more I worship Him because I can feel at home no matter where I am; whether in the most uncomfortable place or the most cozy place, I can be at home. And I truly haven’t felt more at home in the last year than singing praises on that boat for an hour, simply being in my home: in the presence of God.

I love my home.

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-Psalm 23-

“The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. He maketh me to lie dow in the green pastures: He leadeth me beside the still waters. He restoreth my soul: He leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for His name’s sake. Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.”

Kristine Pask – January 2015 DTS