This post was written by one of our former students and Creative Communications staff.
This is a list of a few specific things that God taught her during her time with us.
1. Faith for my finances
Living by faith is an adventure.. it’s stretching, it’s stressful.. but I have never once been in any serious debt or gone without what I need. YWAM has really taught me what it means to trust that God will not only provide you with your daily needs, but also the things your heart desires. It’s funny to think that in the past 18 months I’ve been with YWAM I have been able to upgrade all my camera gear and computer equipment. I have also gone on incredible outreaches all over the world. God blesses those that put their trust in him!
2. How to build a support network
I’ve learnt that fundraising isn’t just doing a chocolate drive or posting a status telling the Facebook world that I need money. Fundraising is a conscious decision to include people in the things God is doing through your ministry. I love that I’ve been able to encourage others in how God is working in my life & ministry. I’ve learnt how important relationships are, and that building a support network is more than names in an address book… but rather individuals that you have the ability to love on and bless because they desire to do the same to you.
It doesn’t matter how much you earn, or whether you earn anything at all.. be generous with what you have. I love that a lot of the YWAMers I know tithe generously and give without receiving anything back. YWAM has taught me what it really means to be generous.. not only with your money, but with your time, gifts and abilities.
4. How to use my creative gifts for missions & ministry.. a passion for communication
I came to the base knowing that I wanted to use my gifts to call more people into the kingdom. But I wasn’t sure how. Not only do I now KNOW what my specific gifts are, but I’ve grown in skill so much more than I ever thought I could. I’ve worked with inspiring people who’s passions for communication are infectious & have encouraged me to learn what it means to communicate in effective ways.
5. How to design websites, make videos, & do graphic design..
I came to the base with about 5% knowledge about graphic design, video making, designing websites, and pretty much everything else I do now… I went from never having made a single video, to making videos that receive thousands of views from people all over the world. Not knowing a thing about design, to designing things for huge events. Not having a clue about websites, to setting up and managing three.
6. How to be flexible
If you struggle in being flexible, join YWAM, you’ll get over that pretty quickly. Being flexible is something I’ve always found hard.. but this past year I’ve learnt that sometimes you just have to make a choice to be flexible, especially with your time. I had to make a last minute video a year ago for an event we held, it stressed me out, but now that video has thousands of views & so many have seen it and been impacted. That’s when flexibility pays off.
7. Obedience to God’s call
If there’s one thing that is represented among everyone I live and work with, it’s that their highest desire in life is not just to live life, but to live the life that God’s called them too. To obey, even when times are tough.. last May my car was stolen from the base and burnt out.. it was completely ruined. It shook me up and made me realise the spiritual battle that’s going on for my heart.. for my obedience. It’s hard.. it’s tough, but it’s so worth it.
8. Youth are valued
For almost a year I was the youngest staff member on base. Rather than it bothering me, I was constantly encouraged and supported by my leaders in my choices as a young person. I went from being insecure about being the youngest, to not ashamed. I’ve been able to connect with girls on brothel outreach that I wouldn’t of been able to if I was older.. what a privilege!
9. Be with the people that Jesus was with
Orphans, prostitutes, the homeless, widows and single mothers. These are the people that Jesus ministered to on a regular basis. Those people that couldn’t give anything back. That’s something I love about YWAMer’s.. they’re willing to do a thousand things with zero recognition. They’re willing to spend a whole day weeding the garden of an old grandmother. They’re willing to pick lice out from orphans heads. They’re willing to go to places that no one sees, to do things that no one will see. When there’s a funeral and the church needs volunteers, they call us first. There’s a saying in YWAM… “YWAMers will do anything..” and it’s absolute truth. What a blessing it has been to learn how to strive for that humility.
10. The Great Commission isn’t just a scripture in the bible
There are people who live the Great Commission in their everyday lives. GO INTO ALL THE WORLD AND PREACH THE GOOD NEWS TO ALL CREATION. It’s been amazing to walk alongside pioneers and passionate young people who really live out what the great commission actually is. Who GO. Who follow Jesus wholeheartedly. By Susanna Smith Creative Communications Staff