It was lunchtime and I had spent the preceding hours with high school students at a breakfast club that I assisted with. We would all meet in the mornings, pray a bit and then start churning out pancakes and Milo. I would sometimes help with cooking but most of my time was spent playing UNO and other card games with kids from a whole range of backgrounds. I loved just hanging out and being a constant, safe place to laugh, chat and play games with. We had a pretty high commitment towards encouraging the students to encourage each other, to be positive, and to have clean speech. And it spread.
After breakfast club I was usually driven home by a lovely lady who was the mother of our pastor at the church I was meeting with. Our congregation was 40 people most weeks. A lot of us musicians and artists attempting to do church together in the middle of the city we called home. I really enjoyed everyone’s company. I lived in an amazing house with two of my closest friends. We had a lot of people over, cooked together and watched a lot of funny movies. I spent a lot of time sitting on a computer not doing much whilst half a foot away stood my book shelf filled with unread books. I had all these things I wanted to do, but never followed through on them. I would always change my mind at the last minute. Like the three times I filled out university applications and got to the postbox and then changed my mind from jazz studies to theology to nursing.
I knew that I was designed and put on this world for a reason. I knew it had to do with people and community but I never had the time to really sit down and figure that out, busy as I was with three jobs, another attempt at a band, church, breakfast club and all the social gatherings I was attending. There was no room in my schedule. I would go through periods of being really connected to intentional small groups and have awesome chats with friends and wise older people about God, but nothing really stuck it out long. I knew I loved God and I loved people, but the disconnect between those things and the obedience of my feet was interestingly lacking. My faith didn’t seem to effect how I lived at all.
I needed a time away, some space to let God right what I had distracted myself from. I felt I needed to get away from all of life’s schedules, all distractions. I needed to figure out what I wanted out of life, what values I would keep to and fight for. So I looked around for 3-6 month courses. I had just started a wedding photography business so I wanted to get back for that at some stage. I decided that I could give God 6 months of my time during the winter.
My best friend had just done a DTS with YWAM and had returned to be on staff in the creative department so I went up to visit him and fell instantly in love with a community that I was designed for. After talking to a few people about what a DTS entailed I decided that I would at least float the idea with my boss because the next school started in three weeks. So I packed up my life, expecting to be back in a few months, and moved up to Newcastle.
Giving God that 6 month space during lectures and our outreach to Thailand and Ukraine has changed my life. Getting God’s heart for the nations and my home country but also understanding God’s heart for me better…knowing his unceasing love, his plans for my life, means my life has taken a 180 turn. From floating and not doing much to waking up every day of my life, excited that I am loved and alive and on a path of encouraging others to meet with that same God is almost unbelievable.
By Jeremy, July Classic DTS Leader Stay Tuned For Part 2 Coming Soon…