fbpx
It’s Time to Step Out

It’s Time to Step Out

I’ve always been the kind of person who steps out. As a little kid, I had no problem going up to the counter at a fast-food restaurant and asking for ketchup or saying hi to a stranger. I thought this would translate into missions with no problem but I remember my first time in a third-world country when God told me to step out and I stayed put. It was a defining moment. From then on, I told myself I will always step in to what God is calling me to. 

 

It was my first time out of the country and in a third world country. We would go to a university to do ministry, talking, and getting to know the people there. Because it was such an impoverished country, everywhere you went there were beggars. Most of the beggars at this university were children or elderly. It was our first time visiting this university. Because we are obviously from America people started to crowd around pretty quickly. 

 

As I was talking to some people who were students there two beggars that came up to me. One was an elderly woman, she was hunched over with hardly any teeth. She came and put her hand on mine and began to talk to me in a language I did not understand. The man I was talking to at the time looked at her and said go away. I was in shock. How could he say that to her? I realized then that they had absolutely no value for her. That she was always cast off. I looked into her eyes. I wanted her to feel seen by me even though I had nothing to give her at that time. I wanted her to stay. The other beggar who approached me was a little boy. He asked for money in English holding out his hand. Money was probably the only word in English he knew. I apologized in the broken words of his language that I knew. Again the students surrounding me told him to go away. This time I was mad. I turned to them and demanded that he stay. I asked him as many questions as I could in his language which was about three. So our conversation was short but I so wanted him to feel seen. He left and my day continued. 

 

Later, our team was about to leave the university. We were gathering everyone up. As I walked with a group of a few of my team members. I turned. The little beggar boy was on the ground holding his head in his hands and crying. My spirit immediately lept. That still small voice said to me “Go, put your arms around him”. But my feet stayed walking the course. I stared as we walked by. The Holy Spirit again told me again to step out and yet I stayed walking the way I was going. My heart broke. I felt sick to my stomach. How could these people cast off these other people? How could this little boy feel so alone? How could all these people walk by and shrug this off? I didn’t know why he was crying, was he hurt? I still do not know. But here is what I do know. God told me to step out. God told me to take step towards the boy not towards the exit. I like everyone else walked right on by. 

 

On our way home from the university on the bus, I sat with my headphones in. I was still in culture shock. We had only been there for a few days. I felt so confused, angry, and sick to my stomach still. Why hadn’t I stepped out? I was raised to stand up when no one else is. I was raised to be a person with extreme courage. I was so disappointed in myself. At that moment, I vowed to myself that I never wanted to not obey the Holy Spirit again. From that moment on I was going to step out. 

 

This day taught me a lot. It will forever be burned in my heart. I learned that Jesus always saw and stopped for the people who society called the lowest of the low. We are called to be Jesus with skin on us. I want people around me to always feel seen. So often we let the fear of man become more than our fear of the Lord. I want to be a person of extreme courage, focused only on God and the person he has in front of me. Not the opinions of those around me. 

 

Jesus is calling you into a purpose. He is calling you to step out. Often the most impactful things in our lives take courage. But He gives it freely. The still small voice is calling. Let’s listen better and step out more.

 

Take the Next Step

The first step can be hard. Have you wanted to join a DTS and spend six months chasing after God full-heartedly? 

Subscribe to Our Monthly Newsletter

Is YWAM a Cult? Misconceptions of YWAM

Is YWAM a Cult? Misconceptions of YWAM

If you’re reading this article, then you must have some questions about Youth With A Mission, like are we a cult? Let’s talk about 3 common misconceptions, give you some insight, and share my personal experience being a part of YWAM.

 

Misconception #1: YWAM IS A CULT

We hear the question all the time- Is YWAM a cult? Well, let’s first look at a few definitions of a cult (according to google):

  1. A relatively small group of people having religious beliefs or practices regarded by others as strange or sinister
  2. A misplaced or excessive admiration for a particular person or thing.

Although we might be a group of people who have religious beliefs that others might think are strange, I can tell you right now that nothing we do here would be considered sinister, or that our admiration is misplaced. I’ve only been a part of one YWAM base and my experience here has not been cultish whatsoever. We love Jesus and we just want to love Him, love people, and be obedient to the voice of God! I have a question for you now: What do you think of or picture when you hear the word cult?? Maybe it’s a group of people wearing hoods, weirdly chanting in a dark room, with a weird and specific set of rules that everyone follows.

If I were to go off of your idea of a cult, then the answer to this misconception would definitely be no. Most cults often isolate you from family members and familiarity. I have never seen or heard of under the umbrella of YWAM. I mean, sure, we are not perfect. We are just a group of human beings doing our best to know God and to make Him known in the world. This hurts people inevitably. This happens anywhere you go, even just a church on a Sunday. Accusations of YWAM being a cult are from people who have been hurt in YWAM. But we always try our best to bring reconciliation.

 

Misconception #2: I’M TOO OLD

You are NEVER too old to chase after more of God! We are called ‘Youth with a Mission’, but there is not an age limit for our schools or our staff. A few years ago, a former staff member’s grandma came to do the 5-month Discipleship Training School (DTS). It was SUCH a blessing to have her here!

My sister went to YWAM when she was 19 years old at the time, I was 23 years old. Working at my big kid job for almost 2 years, I had already graduated from college with a degree. I remember thinking how much I wanted to go and do a DTS. But I thought to myself, ‘That’s for people who are just out of high school. I could never do anything like that’. But the Lord showed me that you’re never too old to learn more about Him and that I had not missed my chance.

 

Misconception #3 YWAM IS GOING TO FIX ME

Sometimes people come to DTS, or their parents send them because they believe that doing a DTS is going to ‘fix’ them and all their problems. While so many of our students get a lot of breakthroughs and healing during their time, it doesn’t mean that after your 5 months you will be 100% better, and have no more problems. My DTS was 3 years ago now. While I found so much healing and breakthrough during that time, I am still working through deeply rooted issues in my life. I do feel that being in YWAM has helped me in the way I process and work through issues. It’s helped me learn what healthy conversation and confrontation look like. In YWAM, you will learn a lot about yourself, God, and how to invite people into your problems.

I hope that this helped you and answered any questions you might have! We all have different experiences when it comes to being a part of YWAM. Just remember what the ultimate heart of the organization is: To know God and to make God known.

Are you interested in a DTS? Click here!
To read more about YWAM click HERE!

 

Subscribe to Our Monthly Newsletter

God is Still Good

God is Still Good

This year has not been easy for many people, I can imagine. Sometimes it can be so hard to find peace while living in the storm. On top of Covid and all the craziness that is happening I experienced a great loss in my family, a loss I never thought would happen so soon and at such a young age. I’ve had so many unanswered questions and waves of fear, doubt, and confusion crashing in. Sometimes it becomes unbearable! As great sorrows try to bring me down I have to remind myself to keep my eyes focused on Jesus. As I gaze into His face, He is what keeps me standing. I’m able to continue on with life with the hope and joy He provides.

I have learned that joy is not just something you experience when everything is going great. True joy is there even when you go through the darkest of nights. Joy is connected to a deep relationship with Jesus and it is in His strength that I can choose joy. Hope could not be more important in these times. Losing your vision and losing your hope allows depression to creep in.

I have to keep my hope focused on Jesus.

To be real with my emotions before the Lord and others has been the most rewarding lesson I have ever learned. Through that I’ve learned to let Jesus pick me up when I’m weak. No one has ever been as kind to me as Jesus. He’s always available and always loving!

So, I challenge you to continue to lean in a little closer to His heart. Let Him into your struggles, be real, and don’t hold back. Learn to smile even even when it’s hard, because God is still good! This I have discovered and this I can testify: He has never left me hanging. Alone time with Jesus is the most satisfying and fulfilling thing I can do! Don’t underestimate what the Lord can do. He is the peace in my storm and bad things will happen but God will bring good out of it.

But will we be patient enough to let Him? If not, He is still good.

Subscribe to Our Monthly Newsletter

Why Should You Do Your DTS at YWAM Redding?

Why Should You Do Your DTS at YWAM Redding?

Doing a discipleship training school (DTS) with Youth With a Mission (YWAM) is a beautiful, life-changing, transformative experience. When you are willing to set aside five months of your life to focus wholeheartedly on passionate pursuit of Jesus and outreach to the nations, God will do more in and through you than you could even imagine. You will live in an amazing community, encounter Jesus in powerful ways, and receive direction for what the Lord is calling you into. This blog will share all of the reasons why you should do your DTS here at YWAM Redding!

Reason #1 to Do Your DTS at YWAM Redding: Culture of Revival

YWAM Redding has a culture of revival that is absolutely beautiful. If you do your DTS here, you will be surrounded by radical lovers of Jesus who are willing to lay down their lives to go to the hardest and darkest places. Every single person here passionately loves Jesus, and lives that out in ways that the world may see as extreme, but that the Bible calls normal Christianity. One of the core values of YWAM Redding is the importance of prayer and worship in missions. We recently started a house of prayer where DTS students and staff come throughout the day to worship Jesus and pray for the nations. Not only does YWAM Redding chase after the nations, but there is such hunger for pure intimacy with Jesus. 

As part of this culture of revival, YWAM Redding cultivates an atmosphere of passionate worship. The worship here has led so many students and staff into beautiful encounters with God. Holy Spirit’s presence is so tangible at this base because there is such openness and expectation here for encounter. When you do your DTS at YWAM Redding, expect to encounter the Lord in a way that will leave you forever changed!

Reason #2 To Do Your DTS at YWAM Redding: Vibrant, Joy-Filled Community

One of YWAM’s core values is living in community, and the community at YWAM Redding is vibrant and joy-filled. There have been so many times that I have been simply going throughout my day and have received multiple words of encouragement. Also, there is such a culture of honor here. Each DTS student and staff member is empowered to walk in the fullness of who God created them to be. Throughout my time here doing DTS, I have consistently felt such love and encouragement from everyone at this base. Finally, be prepared for people to ask you what your love languages are because they want to love you well! YWAM Redding is such a beautiful and life-changing place to be, and one of the main reasons why is the community.

Reason #3 To Do Your DTS at YWAM Redding: Life Transformation Through Encounter

As mentioned earlier, the atmosphere here is ripe for beautiful encounters with the Lord. The life transformation that you experience during DTS will happen because of hearing God’s voice and going deeper in intimacy with Him. If you choose to come to YWAM Redding for DTS, be prepared to encounter the Lord in beautiful, powerful, and supernatural ways. God will transform you in this community of radical lovers of Jesus with a burning passion to go to the darkest places. You will continually experience His relentless pursuit of your heart through both staff and DTS students. Finally, after three months of powerful teaching, your eyes will be opened to see Jesus and the Gospel more clearly than ever before. 

If you are seeking deeper intimacy with the Lord, guidance for your life, beautiful community, and powerful encounters with God’s love, come do a DTS at YWAM Redding! Whether you feel called to missions or just want more of Jesus, there is a place for you here. There is so much that the Lord is doing in and through our base, and we would love to have you come and be a part of it!

To find out more about DTS and how to apply, go HERE

Subscribe to Our Monthly Newsletter

Why Does YWAM Redding Focus on the Unreached?

Why Does YWAM Redding Focus on the Unreached?

Imagine that you were born into a nation in an area of the world that is unreached by the Gospel. From a young age, you are taught that unless you do enough good deeds in your life to appease the god you serve, you will face his wrath for all eternity. Because of this, you are absolutely terrified of him, and desperately strive to be good enough to earn your salvation from a horrible fate. You have no way of knowing whether you are doing enough to please him, so all you can do is pray that he will look favorably upon you on the day of judgment.

Under constant fear of his anger, you are exhausted from seemingly endless religious deeds in an attempt to save your own soul. You continue on this path of fear and shame until the moment that you unexpectedly enter eternity. You then find out that everything you had been taught and believed your entire life was a lie, and that you will spend eternity separated from the one true God in hell. This is not because you did not do enough deeds to save your own soul, but because you never heard the Name of Jesus, the only One Who could save you.

For People in Unreached Nations, This is Their Reality

Because there are not enough missionaries willing to go to these places to share the Gospel, billions of people are in danger of entering a hopeless eternity without Jesus. Here at YWAM Redding, there are a few reasons why we are compelled with such passion and urgency to focus on ministry to the unreached.

How Many People are Still

UnreachedAccording to the Joshua Project, there are still 3.19 billion people, or 41% of the world’s population, who are considered unreached. This means that there is such a small number of believing Christians in a people group, or none at all, that most of this population has no access to the Gospel and no opportunity to hear about Jesus.Most of these people groups are located in what is known as the 10/40 Window, which stretches from 10 degrees south to 40 degrees north of the equator and covers 69 nations across Central Asia, Northern Africa, and the Middle East. This is the area of the world that YWAM Redding focuses on reaching. God’s heart is broken for these people who are lost in spiritual darkness and have never encountered His love. They are in bondage to religions based in fear, shame, and performance, and have never heard that Jesus died for them to set them free and give them eternal life. As lovers of God, the Holy Spirit wants to fill us with the passion from God’s own heart to reach the lost until we are compelled to go to these places. Billions of people are in danger of eternal separation from God unless someone is willing to go to them with the Gospel.

Jesus Commanded Us to Go to the Unreached

In Matthew 28:16-20, Jesus commands us to go and make disciples of all nations. To go implies that this is not passive, but rather an active commitment of obedience and love. To go also implies that we must be willing to make sacrifices in order to reach others with the Gospel. This willingness will not come from a sense of duty, but must be the overflow of a genuine passion for the lost and deep love for Jesus that comes with the desire to follow His leading no matter the cost. 

Jesus also told us that He would not return until the Gospel has been preached throughout all nations. By going to the places that have not yet been reached, we are preparing the way for His return!

And this gospel of the kingdom will be proclaimed throughout the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come. – Matthew 24:14

Going to the Hardest and Darkest Places to Reach the Unreached

YWAM Redding was founded on the mission of training revivalists in a culture of prayer and worship to go to the ends of the earth. For us, going to the hardest and darkest places is not merely a tagline, but a core value of our base that we passionately live out.

The vast majority of people in need of the Gospel are located in an area of the world that is immersed in spiritual darkness. To be a Christian in many of these nations is to risk persecution, imprisonment, and even death. In order to reach the lost in these nations, there must be lovers of Jesus who are willing to give God their yes.

The vast majority of missionaries are not going to these nations. Instead, they are going to places where most people have already heard of Jesus. The people in unreached nations will spend eternity without hope unless people are willing to go to the hard places.

Will you give God your yes?

You don’t need to have a certain set of qualifications to go to the unreached. You just need to be willing to say yes. At YWAM Redding, we have two options to help equip you to go to the nations:

  • Our Encounter Discipleship Training School (DTS) is a five-month program that is the prerequisite to further involvement with YWAM. After three months of investing in your intimacy with the Lord, you will go on a two month outreach. This outreach will give you the opportunity to share the Gospel in the 10/40 Window. HERE is more information about doing a DTS!
  • After doing a DTS, you can join our School of Supernatural Frontier Missions (SFM). This is a 12-week school that focuses on training revivalists to go to these unreached nations. To find out more about SFM, go HERE.

Subscribe to Our Monthly Newsletter

Trading Your Expectations For Being Expectant

Trading Your Expectations For Being Expectant

The difference between having “expectations” vs being “expectant”.

Sometimes it’s easy to allow our personal expectations of God to be in the forefront of my mind, instead of simply being expectant of God to show up. Being expectant doesn’t necessarily mean you know what will happen, but you understand that God is who he says he is and will reach your heart exactly how you need. Your personal expectations base God’s presence only off of what you’ve experienced before, but being expectant lets God bring new revelation.

Being expectant of God

With that being said, you might think, “how in the world do I let go of my expectations and instead start being expectant?!”. The truth is, this process looks different for everyone because we all have personal and unique relationships with God. Everyone takes a different route in learning God’s nature and consequently develop different expectations of him. But, being expectant of God is something we can all do because it welcomes him to bring new revelation of his love to us. For example, some expectations might look like thinking God only speaks to us when we do certain things, pray certain prayers, or even sit in a certain place. But, eventually you might stop hearing God clearly when doing these things. This is likely because your expectations have gotten in the way. We must fully be expectant of God, so that we can actually receive more truth from him. 

God brings new revelation

God knows what we need because he’s a lover of our hearts, but sometimes our expectations of him aren’t aligned with his character. He simply desires a relationship with us, not a programmed schedule. Imagine if we let our detailed expectations go, and trusted that God can do the impossible? Being expectant of God means we recognize that he’s within our waiting, our questions, and the minor details, but our expectations can keep us from receiving new revelation. Being expectant opens the door for progress within the process. We can exhaust ourselves if we only rely on our expectations. God speaks differently to us as we grow older with him, because our relationship is intended to mature. Spiritual growth requires us to be expectant, even if it looks different than last time.

The letting go of our expectations

The point is, we can always be expectant of God to meet us where we are, but we shouldn’t decide how he’s going to do it. We should be expectant by anticipating God bringing new revelation of himself, instead of giving him a list on how to do it. Often times our expectations are actually innocent, but can easily derail our growing process with God. There are times when he’s trying to show us something new, so that we can go deeper with him. Being expectant can further your relationship with God, rather than sticking to how it’s always been. Remember: God is with us in all things, even if you don’t know what to expect. 

What would it look like if you traded up your expectations for being expectant? What doors is God asking you to open so that he can bring new revelation to your situation? Are you letting God reveal more of himself to you, or holding fast to old expectations?

 

To learn more about this topic please refer to: https://www.biblegateway.com

Subscribe to Our Monthly Newsletter