I am currently sitting in my room back at YWAM Pittsburgh and marveling at what God has done in my life during the Discipleship Bible School in Boston. I am not the same person who got on a plane a little over three months ago. I had no idea what to expect, but I knew it was going to be good. Well, it was far greater than I could have ever imagined.
Everything I think, everywhere I look comes with a new perspective now. Reading the bible in context, learning why it was written, who it was written for and learning about culture, religion and why God did what he did at that time has changed the way I look at the bible. The first week blew me away and as we went on, week after week, God did something in my heart. He broke down what I had thought about him and his story and rebuilt it on the realest foundation I have ever had. I got to know God in such an intimate way... through his own word. And I didn't do it alone I did it with a family, my DBS family. I am so thankful for them. We all went through such different experiences with God during this school, but we all grew closer to God and closer to each other. Leaving YWAM Boston was hard for me because I had experienced such unity in my school.
Our last group photo at the lake house right after graduation
I have been putting off writing a blog because I don't even know where to start when it comes to talking about this school and summing it up in just a simple blog post. It's so much more than that, but i want to focus on a few different things God did in my heart. I remember the first week of the school and how blown away I was that God would uproot such deep issues in my heart in just the first week and that is when I realized that this was not just a school to learn about the bible, but a life shaping experience where I could really dive deep with God if I surrendered my heart and any idea I had about the school or about him and let him do whatever he wanted. That first week I learned I could ask God questions, I learned how to ask questions and this is a fundamental part of any relationship. When Adam & Eve sin for the first time what does God do first? He asks them a question. God doesn't have to ask us questions, but he does it to engage in relationship with us. He is a relational God. I wouldn't have learned as much as I did about God and even about myself if it weren't for learning how to ask questions. The first week of the school shaped the rest of my time in Boston. I knew God had me there for a reason and it wasn't the reason I had come... I had come so I could known the bible and God better so I could teach it to the unreached of the world and see them come to know Jesus. Which is not a bad reason and I can still do that, but it was not why God had brought me to Boston. He brought me to Boston to reveal who he truly is and what his redemptive plan was and still is for his people. This changed my whole life and is still changing me.
One of my speakers talked a lot about the fear of the Lord and how the Israelites had a lack of it. He was talking about how throughout the period of the kings there were some kings who were 'good', but they never tore down the shrines and altars to other gods. They didn't tear down the high places. (There were only two kings who did this, Hezekiah & Josiah) I still remember what he said,
"Tear down the high places in your heart."
He also said,
"Do we have a sense of the awe of God? If not we need to seek more."
Something starting burning in my heart during this week. I have a new fear of the Lord than I ever have before. We need to have a fear of the Lord because he is too mighty and worthy not to. My heart should be completely wholehearted before him. When Randy was talking about tearing down the high places I was so deeply convicted and to this day I am. Am I making Jesus Lord in every area? Am I honoring him in everything I do? Because he deserves it. He deserves every part of my life. He deserves me seeking him with my whole heart and not letting anything get in the way.
God is faithful, he is relational, just, full of mercy and compassion and always loves. He is jealous and always heeds to repentance (trust me, read the old testament and you will find this true). He is forgiving. I highlighted the character and nature of God throughout my bible during the school and every week for homework I had to write three different ways God's character and nature stood out to me. I seemed to always write about how faithful he is. Time and time again God shows his faithfulness and how he keeps his promises. The bible is full of the promises of God and God fulfilling his promises.
If you don't know God and you want to get to know him.... read the bible, but read it in it's context. Read it knowing the background. Because if you don't do that then you can misinterpret SO much. The bible was written for so much more than what we can get out of it. I'll admit, that's how I have read it for most of my life, but there is a story, a larger story that speaks so much louder when you really study it. God's redemption started in the garden. My mind, my heart and my whole life is transformed because I got to know the creator of this world in a way I have never known him before. This school, every speaker that taught peaked my curiosity and desire to know God even more, to study deeper. To study is to meditate, to mediate is to study. You can't do one without the other.. My incredible leaders, classmates and amazing friends have shown me that unity in the body of Christ is so key and I am so thankful that God brought all of us together. I am so excited for what God has for me next... I am still praying, but I know God has the best plan for my life.
Get to know God. Learn about His story. Because then you will see how your story fits in to His.
If you have done a DTS with YWAM and want to experience God in spirit & truth you can do the next DBS! It starts in September! Check it out: