Posted on December 14, 2014.
At our 2014 Spring Staff Conference, Greg DeVries gave us a powerful talk about avoiding the “disease of ease” and preparing for upcoming challenges. It resonated with many of us, and we prayed to set our hearts right before God. Almost at the last moment, he added that he felt God wanted to say, “There are 7 doors to YWAM Denver, and you need to be sure they are guarded.” It was one of those moments when we knew we , as a staff, needed to listen.
At the break, several of our leadership team members got together to talk about the “7 doors” being the 7 YWAM Denver values. We canned the afternoon’s scheduled activities, printed off the values, and put everyone into small groups to pray and see what God was saying. When the groups gathered, it was clear that God was speaking to us about our value of raising up and releasing long-term teams.
In the months that followed, the elders began to pray through our response to God. At the same time, God was bringing opportunities to us AND people across the globe were inviting YWAM Denver to be part of what God was doing. One of those invitations was from YWAM Townsville, AUS, to be part of their ministry in Papua New Guinea (PNG). As we talked and prayed, we felt a growing excitement and leading from the Lord.
In May, the leadership decided to send Ruth Dubbeldam and me (Donna MacGowan) on a scouting trip that would coincide with a DNA Conference in Port Moresby, PNG, which Loren and Darlene Cunningham were leading. The timing was good, the funds were provided, and off we went. We were welcomed in true island fashion, and began to hear, “Most of PNG is evangelized, but it has not been discipled.” My heart said, “Discipleship is one of YWAM Denver’s strengths!” Throughout the week we began to hear about other needs…particularly for leadership and organization. My heart said, “Those are our strengths!”
On Saturday, after the conference finished, Ruth and I had an amazing opportunity!
We joined a van trip with YWAM’s founders (Loren and Dar), Tom Hallas (a friend, and one of the original YWAMers to go to PNG 35 years ago), and the leader of the Townsville base, Ken Mulligan. We got to see where the first team lived, where they showed the Jesus film, and even where they baptized those who came to know Jesus (In fact, when we arrived at that beach, there was a baptism going on!!!).
Our last stop was at a facility which may become available to YWAM – a beautiful college campus, ready to go! My teacher’s heart was so excited about all the students who could be trained there to impact the world for God’s kingdom. We need God’s leading and His timing.
As a base, we have also been exploring opportunities in a few other countries. Please pray for us, as YWAM Denver, to hear God as clearly as we did at the Spring Staff Conference through every step of the journey ahead…wherever He leads!