What would it look like for you to set aside five months of your life to focus on pursuing Jesus and missions without distractions? Whether you have already given God your yes and decided to do a Discipleship Training School with YWAM Redding or are praying about doing a DTS and want to find out more, this blog will give you a glimpse into what it is like to be a DTS student at YWAM Redding and some practical tips on how to intentionally cultivate intimacy with the Lord during DTS.
What is daily life like as a DTS student?
As a DTS student at YWAM Redding, you have the incredible opportunity to be immersed in a passionate community of revivalists whose hearts are burning for Jesus and the nations! The daily schedule is created for the purpose of drawing you into greater intimacy with the Lord. It could happen through extravagant worship, powerful times of intercession, or receiving fresh revelation of who God is through anointed teaching. There is always the opportunity to pursue deeper intimacy with Jesus.
Cultivating Intimacy with Jesus: Prioritize Your Quiet Time
Each morning, you will have an hour set aside for you to focus on cultivating intimacy with Jesus in your secret place. This can involve prayer, worship, Bible study, journaling, being creative, or however Holy Spirit leads you. It can be tempting with a busy schedule in an atmosphere filled with worship and teaching to neglect your quiet time. However, this is the worst mistake you could make. Quiet time is when you are able to drink deeply from the pure fountain of your intimacy with Jesus. If you don’t make spending time with Him a priority, you will still be thirsty. Worship, teaching, and community are all amazing aspects of your DTS experience that can increase your hunger for the Lord. Still, they will never be able to fully quench your thirst. Only intimacy with Jesus truly satisfies.
Be Captivated by the One Thing
How different would each day be if you started by locking eyes with Jesus? What if instead of checking social media as soon as you wake up, you choose to gaze upon His beauty? The enemy will have a much harder time attacking you if you begin each day cultivating intimacy with Jesus. The most beautiful and powerful encounters with Jesus don’t take place in a corporate setting. They happen in the secret place where there are no distractions and no one watching. Your daily schedule will be so much richer and sweeter if you have first spent time alone with Him. In order to receive the fullness of what God wants to bring to you during your DTS, your quiet time with Jesus needs to be your priority.
Cultivating Intimacy with Jesus: Passionate, Intentional Pursuit
During DTS, your schedule will be filled with opportunities to go deeper with Jesus and encounter Him in beautiful ways. You may feel Him set your heart ablaze for a nation you’ve never thought of before during intercession. You might be forever marked by an encounter with the Father’s love during morning worship. The Lord could completely restore you from the darkest parts of your past during a class session focused on healing. Even during a week focused on one topic, every day will look different. Your schedule will be incredibly fulfilling and joy-filled, but also full. This is why it is so important to commit daily to passionate, intentional pursuit of Jesus.
Don’t “Check Out”
It can be tempting, especially a few weeks into DTS, to “check out” and just go through the motions. It is beautiful to be immersed in a culture of revival. However, lasting transformation in your life will only happen through your own personal pursuit of the Lord. Be aware that the enemy will try to distract you through tiredness, discouragement, or complacency. He knows what happens when fiery revivalists fall in love with Jesus and then are sent out to the nations. When you are aware of the enemy’s schemes, it is easier to fight them with truth.
Intimacy is Personal, Not Imparted
It is also important to remember that intimacy cannot be imparted by anyone else, but only comes through relationship. During your DTS, you will be surrounded by amazing testimonies of people’s encounters with the Lord to stir up hunger. However, they are never intended to replace your own relationship with Jesus. Don’t allow the only times that you hear God during DTS be through others. While prophetic words are so beautiful and powerful, they are meant to inspire you to go deeper in personal intimacy. Take time to process the things that you are learning in class and bring them to the Lord. Do not fall into the trap of allowing corporate worship to replace your own times with Jesus. When you respond to His relentless pursuit of your heart with passionate pursuit in return, you will encounter Him in ways beyond anything you could have dreamed possible!
Cultivating Intimacy with Jesus: Stay Hungry
When you are tempted to give in to complacency or feeling discouraged, remind yourself of why you first felt called to YWAM Redding. In moments where it may be easy to turn to social media or other forms of comfort or distraction, take a moment to read a chapter in your Bible or listen to worship music or process what you have been learning. There are so many incredible opportunities during DTS to go deeper in your relationship with the Lord, but you will only get as much out of DTS as what you are willing to put into it.
Doing a DTS is an incredible, life-changing experience, especially here at YWAM Redding, where there is such a beautiful culture of prayer, worship, and revival! If the Lord is placing it on your heart to spend a season focusing on your relationship with the Lord and being trained for missions, there are so many opportunities during DTS to intentionally cultivate intimacy with Jesus that will not only last for a season, but for the rest of your life.