Posts Tagged ‘#missiontrip’

When did he grow to be so tall?
Wasn’t it yesterday when they were small?
Sunrise, Sunset
swiftly fly the years.
One season following another,
laden with happiness and tears
– Fiddler on the Roof

Back in October I wrote the following words in a blog post To Know God and to Make Him Known :

“So, we stay here at home, while he does what we dreamed for that little boy … that he go his way. And in his going, he will come back again to share his discoveries and joys with us. Our role now, as parents to the adult son, is to support and encourage him. Go with God, my boy-man son.”

They were in God we trust words, as our son prepared to embark on ten weeks away, at a YWAM DTS (discipleship training school) in New Zealand and two months on a mission trip to Thailand.

On March 8 my wandering son returned home and I have been trying to find the words to share about his trip, his return.

The day he returned I stood at the airport … waiting. When he walked into view, I just couldn’t wait to hold him in my arms. Reunions are like the beauty of a sunrise, brightening everything it touches.

The trip … well, it’s not mine to tell, so here it is, our son’s discoveries and joys … and sorrows … and joys

kind of like the sunrise and sunset of life.

In Ben’s words :

Alright it’s about time that I tell you all about my trip and the amazing work that Jesus has been doing in me, my new friends and the nations that we visited!

I left BC (Canada) in October of last year and my reason for leaving was that I was spiritually dead. My faith was burnt out and it was not my own belief. I wanted to understand the reason behind, what had then become, tradition and repetition. I was struggling on multiple fronts. Family, Church and Faith at the centre of them. So, I decided to go to YWAM Marine Reach with 2 of my best friends.

This was also my first time off continent, I have very well covered North America but this was the first time that I was on my own going to another continent. When I was on the 14 hour from YVR to ALK, I was overcome with a combination of worry and excitement!

Man, I was not disappointed. Before classes even began we did life stories and that was incredible. You can connect with people so much more when all the cards are on the table and most definitely did connect with a few new friends, whom I now care dearly for. These excellent people are pure gold and I miss them dearly.

During the Lecture Phase, each week we would have a different speaker and they would each have different topics. Lecture Phase last for roughly 11 weeks and there were so many great speakers and I’d love to talk about them all, but I’ll focus on 2.

During week 4, we had a speaker by the name of John Bills. He was speaking on the topic of Identity and where we find it. It was exactly what I needed. Asking ourselves the important questions of do we love ourselves like Jesus loves us? Do you understand that what you are actually worth? I came to many realizations about my self worth, and realizing it is not selfish to love yourself. If you understand how Christ sees you, many of the lies that Satan promotes as truth lose their hold you.

During week 7 we actually had to leave Marine Reach because the July school was actually returning from Outreach. So, the October School went to the Mata Mata Base and we had a speaker named Mark Parker, who taught us about Lordship. Now, before we even got to the base, the staff were telling us stories about this guy. It was pretty obvious this guy was a legend. Lordship was a extremely impactful week for me and many others. For me, it was coming to the understanding that Jesus is my saviour but that he is also my Lord and now I follow what he desires for my life.

We also had some unreal trips! Later on me and a few other guys returned to Mata Mata and got to go to Hobbiton. For those who do not know, Hobbiton is the old set for the Lord of the Rings movie set. All of us preceded to geek out the entire time.

I also struggled a fair bit. During lecture phase my grandfather on my mom’s side of the family died. Before I had left, my parents talked about the possibility of that happening but you can’t truly never see these things coming. I knew the stakes.

During the day I learned of my grandfathers passing, I left lectures and went to the chapel. I wept and cried out to God. I spent the rest of the day to myself until the evening when I found my friends and told them the news.

Later that week, we were having a worship night when I suddenly got a vision of my grandfather and Jesus in heaven together. It was amazing, because of the timing. When time change was accounted for, it was exactly 3 days after he had died to the minute. It also gave me assurance of his fate. I miss my grandfather but I know he is in much more capable hands then my own. His memory is completely redeemed.

Like all things do, Lecture Phase was ending. So it was time for my team, Kingdom Come, to go Thailand. Now, I was headed to another new continent. We were now all headed different ways. I was calm and under control till about 20 minutes into the car ride, when I was drenched in tears.

Now Thailand is wild! We did almost exclusively kids ministry and it was amazing. Over our time in Thailand we gave out over 1000 copies of the New Testament translated into Thai! We participated in healings and spoke the gospel in schools all over Thailand! In Thailand 94.6 percent are estimated to be Buddhist, 4.3 percent Muslim and 1 percent Christian. Some of these kids had never heard about Jesus.

Our team was made up of 4 Americans, 2 Germans, 2 Swiss, 1 Tongan and me, the Canadian. We had 5 guys and 5 girls and we had ups and downs, but at the of the day they had my back. Whether it was prayer or just simple conversation, I knew that we would get the job done.

We stayed in three locations: Tak Fa, Bangkok and Thoen. All of the locations, we worked with different ministries and but it was always the same mission: To make Christ known.

We spent 7.5 weeks in Thailand. It was real hot but now I miss it, Canadians don’t know the meaning of heat. It was time to return to what at this point we considered as home, New Zealand.

We had a beautiful last week together as a school and well, the rest is history. To say my time in YWAM was transformative would be an understatement. It has filled my empty cup and now it’s time to continue pouring out.

Or at least that’s what I thought I’d be doing right now. I thought I would be helping at camp and the ministry that is going on there. However that doesn’t seem like that will happen for a while (Covid-19).

However, my spirit has not dampened. During this time, we need to be digging into the Word more than ever before. In this time, we need to be hearing what God might be saying.

I would like to thank all the people who supported me! Without them, I don’t think I would be where I am now. I can’t wait to see you when this mess is all over. So much to say! Bless you!

What’s next, you may ask? I am currently looking a for job, sitting during this whole debacle is not good for my soul. 😉
It is my hope this coming summer that I’ll will be back at camp serving as a counsellor, not for the glorification of myself but for the glorification of God. I believe that God has also called me back to be a staff member at Marine Reach.

And although the future is uncertain, we know that we serve a God who was, is, and always be in control.

Last summer, we all received popsicle sticks that had different words on them. The word that picked up was Restored. While I was at YWAM the Lord reinforced this concept. That is the season I am in.

Blessings during this season!

Sunrise, Sunset
swiftly fly the years.
One season following another,
laden with happiness and tears
– Fiddler on the Roof


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