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The Experience I Needed to Stop Going through the Motions of Life and Faith

Apr 1, 2019 1:47:04 PM

YWAM DTS was the Experience I Needed to Stop Going through the Motions of Life and Faith.

For many years as a Christian, it certainly didn't feel like I was alive in Christ. I felt more like I was in a spiritual desert. Bible reading was done out of habit not desire, my prayers feel memorized, and I stop making the time to hear God's voice in my life. I lived my life my way, until something goes wrong and then I need Him. Frustration, anger, and stress become the only motivation to activate my spiritual life. How was it that the Bible described a faith that seemed unknown to me? It was discouraging to know that there was something more, but I was unable to reach out and grasp it. How could I actually live in the richness Christ offers?

I remember being in a study group at my Christian college, and one student described his walk with Jesus like that pearl of great price in the Bible. The pearl was so perfect, the merchant sold everything he had to own it (Matthew 13:45-46). I thought, “I want to know that.” I didn’t understand what “that” was. As I look back, that was the first time I felt my deep need for Jesus. I hungered for him, maybe only a little at first, but it was a start.

Search for Spiritual Breakthrough

It was during this season that I began praying and considering giving a year of my life to mission work after college. As I researched different organizations, I came across YWAM (Youth With a Mission). Having spent so much time throughout college volunteering and working with social justice causes, I thought I was ready to just jump into missions work. At first, I didn’t think YWAM would be right for me because I didn't want to do their entry level program, the DTS (Discipleship Training School). I wanted to jump into missions immediately and get my hands dirty. When I learned more about what DTS was, the pride in my heart that blinded me from God’s plan started to vanish.  Part of DTS is three months of intense spiritual formation and biblical training. I thought, what if this is the thing I need for breakthrough in my spiritual life?

Overcoming Fear and Coming Alive through DTS

Three months after graduating college, I said yes to doing a YWAM DTS. Through the awesome program, I received the revelation I needed. I realized for most of my life I had been desperate for more of God, but I had let fear control me. After a time, that fear numbed me. I stopped relating to God through the lens of his love for me and instead thought God must think of me only with judgment. At my core, I believed my sin and brokenness was too much for Jesus. He  met me in my fear, and this time instead of running away I met him there too. My heart started to thaw. If you are willing, God "will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; [He] will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh” (Ezekiel 36:26).

It’s not an impossible spiritual task to become fully alive in Christ, but it is not a task that we can do by our own strength. I surrendered my need for control, and Jesus met me there. I know it’s hard to feel fully alive in Jesus, especially when the fruit is not evident; however, fruit is secondary. It doesn’t come if we don’t trust God to prune us and care for us. If we don’t let him in, how can we expect to see His hand in our lives? Jesus said, “whoever loses his life for my sake will find it” (Matthew 10:39) If we are willing to lean into to Christ, we will find in Him the richness of life we seek.

The DTS was my chance to be shaken from just going through the motions of my life and faith.

Interested in Jesus, adventure, and growing in your faith?

Do a Discipleship Training School, YWAM’s flagship missionary training course. It's a great gap year option. It's also perfect for anyone looking to step out of the ordinary and grow in your faith.

How does it work?

First, you’ll spend 3 months getting to know God amongst a vibrant Christian community and the inspiring beauty of the Pacific Northwest. Then you’ll embark on a life-changing 2-month overseas missions trip, focused on making God known. A new DTS starts every September, January, April, and June! Submit your info below to learn more. 

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