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Experiencing Life Happen

  |   Alumni, Uncategorized   |   No comment

My name is Stephani and I am from Tacoma, WA.  I began my YWAM experience in Belize as a DTS student with YWAM DP in 2010.  My outreach was in Guatemala and I interned in Denver, CO at Alternatives Pregnancy Center for six months.   Last June, I graduated from the School of Ministry Development at YWAM Denver and in July I began YWAM’s Birth Attendant School in Australia.  This school was a three month course followed by time in India and now Tanzania.  I am currently practicing as a missionary midwife!  I love Jesus and I am so glad I get to spread His love around the world serving in this way.  I hope you will check out my latest newsletter on one exciting night with ten amazing births!

Stephani ~ YWAM DP Alumni, May 2010 DTS

Road to Blessings

  |   Lecture Phase, Uncategorized   |   No comment

Hey everyone!  My name is Dallas.  I am from Southern Virginia and am a student here in the 2012 January DTS.  We just had an awesome opportunity to partake in what is called Ministry Week.  This is a week set aside to offer help and show God’s love in neighborhood homes and businesses in and around San Pedro Town, Belize.  We blessed a lot of people but I am going to tell you how I was blessed far more in return.

The first day of ministry, our school arrived at a dock near San Mateo, the poorest neighborhood on Ambergris Caye.  Its streets are lined with piles of trash and you have to walk on bridges built out of plywood planks.  I was feeling really excited to get out and show everyone God’s love.  We didn’t know where God would lead, so our small group decided it best to pray for guidance and direction.  Then we set off walking.  Initially, we met some people who didn’t want to talk with us but we persevered and continued to look for someone to interact with when we were kindly greeted by a man and his wife.  Robert and Lavern invited us into their home which had an amazing presence about it.  After talking for a little bit, we found out that Robert was actually a pastor and he and Lavern were running a small church right in the heart of San Mateo. They continued to pour into us love and truth.  Here I thought this day was for us to bless others but God truly blessed me through this great couple.  We did get the great benefit of praying over their home and the small chapel.  Their encouragement helped me and our team to give back to others throughout the week as they had shown us.

Love was definitely the theme each and every day.  First God poured His love into us through our time with Robert and Lavern and then we were able to pour that love into the people we met.  From helping a local business relocate to cleaning a family’s home and having fun with area children, I used each opportunity as a chance to bless someone as God so richly blessed me.  I learned that God can take even a small chance meeting and set the stage for bigger blessings!!  Psalm 20:4 says, “May he give you the desire of your heart and make all your plans succeed.”  I am so glad I am able to share with you how God took my joy and the desire to help others and used it for His good!  We serve an amazing God!!

Dallas Johnson ~ January 2012 Leadership DTS

Hope from Holland

  |   Alumni, Uncategorized   |   No comment

My wife and I came to YWAM DP for our DTS in January 2010.  We spent our outreach time in India and saw first hand the poor and the broken hearted.  The experience opened our hearts and our minds.  During our month home, after outreach, we realized we missed the uplifting Christian community we had found at YWAM DP.  We knew that living for God through missions was our next step so we checked flights. 

Three days later we boarded a plane back to Belize!

This past Christmas, I told my parents we were moving to a new base property.  My Dad and two friends, Jaap and Philip, came and joined us as we prepared to move to our new location.  I was nervous about having both my worlds come together, Belize and Holland, but God had good things in store.  If my Dad would do this for me, that he would love me so much as to travel half-way around the world to work and bless us with his time, then how much more does our Heavenly Father love us!  Wow!!  As soon as the group arrived, I felt an overwhelming peace and a sense of relief.  Throughout the following two weeks, they worked so hard.  Day after day they spent time cleaning, fixing and preparing the space for our housing and kitchen. Without them here we could not have moved everything and everyone on time!

Another really special thing about their visit was the time they took to get to know the students; eating with them and just sharing after dinner about what God was doing during their time here at YWAM DP.  All three men were surprised to have God speak to their hearts too.  I was able to spend time studying the Bible and having a “mini DTS” with them before they returned to Holland.  We are looking forward to seeing them again in the future, and hopefully here in Belize!

René de Waard ~ YWAM DP Alumni, January 2010 DTS

Created for Beauty

  |   Lecture Phase, Uncategorized   |   No comment

Hey friends! I’m Camille, writing for the January 2012 Destination Paradise team. I’d like to welcome you to the journey that God is taking me on in this season.  Being here in Belize has opened my eyes to God’s beauty and He is using nature around me to awaken my passion for life!  I have always liked to spend time in nature, hiking, rock climbing, biking, and being here I have even more creative ways to explore His beauty in the tropics.  I come alive when I find myself immersed in a sunrise as I run along the beach or diving in the deep, fish filled seas of the Caribbean.  The things I see inspire me to create and try to capture the colors in paintings.  From the radiant fish to the funky tropical birds, I have a new passion for all kinds of art.

Something that God has revealed is how much He truly, deeply sees me.  I had fallen into an endless cycle of self-hatred, putting myself down with the lies from Satan.  I know now, the only way of tearing down that wall of insecurity is to find value in myself and believe it whole-heartedly.  He views me as genuine, radiant, and colorful.  In Revelations 3:12, it says, “He who overcomes, I will write a new name.”  My new name is my true identity, in Christ.  He has given me the name, “Beloved.”  I’m His artwork, unique and beautiful.  God has access to my heart again.  Just like the new growth on a palm tree, I feel as though I’ve sprouted a fresh beginning to my relationship with Christ.  I’m free from the lies of the past and can push forward, knowing that God has healed me.

This new-found freedom makes me want to dive deeper.  God’s pushing me out of my comfort zone, so I can trust and experience the full abundance He wants for me.  Challenges will come, but I know through each trial, He brings victory.  I also know that with each struggle, I discover more of who Christ is and who I am in Him.  I hope my passion for art and love for His creation grows in this time.  I want to soak in all that He has for me because everything that happens in this time is only preparing me for what’s to come in the eight weeks of outreach ahead.

Camille — January 2012 Leadership DTS Class

Building Character

  |   Interns, Uncategorized   |   No comment

I am on week 9 of my internship and it has been an adventure to say the least.  For the past 3 weeks, I have been very busy and faced some challenges as well.

The construction of the orphanage for Kids Alive Zambia is coming along nicely and we will start to put up the roof soon.  I have been learning a ton and am fortunate to be with a great crew.  Recently, the pastor from the church that I have been attending asked me to give two Sunday sermons.  I felt the Holy Spirit leading me to speak on the topic of faith at the first service and the second on Jesus Christ.  They both went well and overall it was a great experience for me. I got to dig into Christ and attack my fear of public speaking.

God has been good and He has been teaching me a lot.  Two other experiences I would like to share are the following:

   My faith was tested; to see whether I built my Biblical foundation on rock or sand.  The waves came and a majority of my house fell to ruins but God, forever faithful, has used this for His good.  He revealed weaknesses in me and is guiding my steps as I begin to rebuild.

   God has gifted me with a servant hearted roommate. Right before I was heading out the door my roommate stopped me, grabbed a cloth, bent down and wiped the dust of my shoes.  My shoes were on my feet!  It was very moving and showed me that actions speak louder than words.  God has blessed me tremendously and I feel very lucky to be here in Zambia, Africa.  Thank you all, again, for your love and support.

Blessings,                                                                                                                                      Chris Hagel                                                                                                                                    May 2011 Leadership DTS Class