Sixteen years ago, after learning about Youth With A Mission’s (YWAM) unique Bible school and missions program called Discipleship Training School (DTS), I decided that I wanted to experience a DTS myself. And so the dream began and as time went by my passion and excitement for joining a DTS remained. So, it is with great joy and anticipation that after patiently waiting, I will finally be starting my DTS the end of August in Chico, California!
I eagerly look forward to all that God is going to do in and through me and have total confidence that this is the right time and thing for me to do. Through many different people and in various ways, the Spirit has guided and confirmed my steps – so it is with great peace and anticipation I prepare for the long-awaited adventure.
I have so much respect for Youth With A Mission (YWAM) as a ministry and for the people I know associated with it. Founded in 1960, YWAM is an international nondenominational Christian volunteer movement dedicated to serving Jesus throughout the world. From the beginning, their main focus was giving young people opportunities to demonstrate the love of Jesus to the whole world. Today, YWAM has many different types of ministries, both long and short term for all age groups. Their purpose is simply to know God and to make Him known. YWAM is currently operating in more than 1000 locations in over 150 countries, with a staff of nearly 16,000.
The Discipleship Training School (DTS) has been offered across the globe for more than 30 years. It is an intensive 5 month course facilitated by YWAM. There are over 500 DTS courses in the world, some with a special focus, such as music, sports, or children’s ministry. All DTS follow the same structure and curriculum, making the teaching consistent in each location. The DTS program aims at helping students “to know God and make Him known” in depth, with the perspective of being transformed in character and relationships in the image of Jesus, while developing their daily walk with God. My goal is spiritual growth and development with practical application and community service.
DTS is evenly divided into two parts, the lecture phase and the outreach phase. The first 12 weeks focus on quality teaching, offered by speakers from various countries and backgrounds, on key Biblical topics. Each week explores a different topic. The first three months is when weekly speakers will mentor me in knowing God personally, hearing His voice, loving His Word, spiritual warfare, sharing my faith, relationships, and world evangelism. The aim is to establish lifelong disciplines and habits that can provide a foundation for future ministry. Unique times of worship, passionate intercession, and challenging lectures that lead to greater depth of intimacy with Jesus are anticipated. The course is also designed to promote seeking God’s vision and direction individually and has a huge emphasis on personal application.
I will be living on campus in Chico as part of a live-learn environment during the first 3 months. The next 8 weeks will be the mission trip where I apply all the teaching and training in practical cross-cultural field work. This will be an overseas outreach to a developing country. As a group, we will seek the Lord on which country we should go to for those 2 months. The DTS I’m joining is for students ages 30 and up. To learn more about the Chico Crossroads DTS, click here.
I feel that being with other Believers with similar callings will be transformational. I also believe that I will make key connections and gain experiences that will be pivotal and foundational for my future ministry and career.
Please join me on my journey! It is an exciting adventure and faith walk for me and I hope you will be part of it.
There are various ways you can get involved:
• Prayer Partner – I value and believe in the power of prayer
• Sponsor me – the total cost is $7,200. It is almost time to embark on my journey! Thanks to so many generous hearts - including a marvelous $1000 matching grant - I now need less than $1000. To make tax deductible contributions: ONLINE using PayPal, click on the “Donate” link; or if you prefer, you can make CHECKS payable to His Vanguard (designate “Bridges of Compassion” on the memo line).
• Spread the word! Please pass this on.
Thank you so much! I appreciate your support during this exciting time in my life.
Blessings ~ Rachel Harris