I'm David. I've just returned from a 6 month mision trip in Mazatlan Mexico and Central America. These are mostly just thoughts, stories, and accounts during my trip and more.
I swore to myself that aside from my some family members and close friends I wouldn’t share this testimony with anyone. I told myself that it was just one that not everyone needed to hear…and I still believe that. However, no one on my team knew. At this point I think the enemy was using whatever he had against me. This testimony was always something I tried to shove to the back of my mind and really didn’t take control of me…for the most part. However, doing the DTS, and being in YWAM I knew God wanted it to come out. Not because He wanted me in pain and He enjoys seeing
suffering…He wanted the exact opposite…FREEDOM. I was becoming a prisoner in a cell labeled “my past.” I had the key, the map, and the choice to just get up and leave, but I’d be choosing to stay there. To sit there and just be there. Alone. Rotting. Crying. Dying.
El Salvador had been the climax of this burden. I don’t know exactly what it was, but I needed someone to talk to. We had 6 girls and 3 guys on our team (including me). I always got along and could talk to girls easier than I could guys. With my testimony I knew I was going to tell one of the girls…but who?
That day we worked at a school and had a great time. Our leaders prepped us that morning that we were going to have a more intimate debrief and challenged us to open up about things we hadn’t at that point. They of course said no pressure. However, I knew exactly what I wanted to talk about.
When we returned my leaders let me know that I would be sharing today. We all sat in a room and as I was about to speak, the two other males in my group were called into the house to start dinner because they were on dinner crew…so there I was in a room full of all the girls on my team…just what I wanted.
So I told my story. I told them what was tormenting me for years. I shared and opened up. We cried, we laugh, we all embraced. I told them the things I thought and the things I did up to that point. They showed me love. Nothing changed. If anything we were closer. What did I tell them…that’s what part 2 is about
I’m gonna make another Tumblr. This one is going to remain on my entries of my mission trip…the other…well the other will be something else…just different things. Different thoughts. I’ll post a link to the new one if you’re interested…yea…
Haha is it awful that as soon as I wrote my title I could hear the musical intro for the Britney song. Ha! Anyway it has been an extremely long while since I wrote. And as much as I want to get back and finish my accounts from my YWAM DTS I just needed to come here and update I guess.
Well I’ve moved to Irvine. School doesn’t start for a while, but I moved here expecting nothing and you know what…I haven’t gotten anything. It’s boring. I work at this God awful retail store…Forever 21…which every time I’m there feels like it will be Forever til my shift is over. Anyway I’m ready to confess and get real…
I came back from Mexico in June and since then probably went to church only about three times…out of sheer laziness. I really have no other excuse. I just didn’t want to go. I rather sleep in. LAME! I know. So this is my second Sunday in Irvine and I decided to break the habit. Alone and on my own I decided to go to a church…Rock Harbor. It…was…AMAZING!
During worship I had this immense feeling that God was just so there. You know that feeling when you stop eating your favorite food for awhile or maybe it’s a drink or television show and all of a sudden out of nowhere you do…and you’re like, “Oh yeah that’s what it’s like.” That times 10000000000000000000000000000000000 is what tonight felt like. It was like God yet again saying, “There you are. I knew I didn’t lose you, but jeeeeeeeez what’s been taking so long…come on in…let me fill you.” And of course He did and and the message just had to be on resetting and rebuilding the foundation to our temple. (It was the verse in Jeremiah where God’s people were starting to rebuild Solomon’s temple. The pastor was connecting this to earlier scripture where the people first built Solomon’s temple and how the second time was pretty much following the EXACT same blueprint. People looked back how it was done to replicate).
The pastor had his connection to make, but indirectly I also got something else. An obvious one is the Bible is our manual. We are temples. Each one of us is an individual temple for and of God. So what happens when we crack, crumble, and need foundation rebuilt? We go back to the blueprints…our Bibles to restore. DUH! This was soooooo obvious in retrospect, but I’d been missing it. YWAM was awesome and I would do it again in a heartbeat, but YWAM isn’t my manual and it’s not my guide. It’s more of a structural piece laid on my foundation. My foundation is Christ. If it’s not or I swap it out for something else, I crumble. So it’s once again time to hit the reset button and lay down the foundation and then build the structure from things I already know and things yet to come.
Thank you Jesus for letting me rebuild over and over again. You get the glory and the honor…
What happens when a screwdriver has no screws to screw…what happens when a hammer has no nails to hit. What happens when a stove has no gas or power to burn…what happens when ice has nothing to chill. What happens to a chalk board without chalk…what happens when a brush has no paint.
Objects need purpose. People need purpose, reason, and drive. What happens when all those things lose what makes them function. They are forgotten by others and they forget their design. They are lost. They cease to function. They die.
I think the same happens to people. We all have a purpose or something you’re really good at…gifted even. So what happens when you lose sight of that gift? You too forget who you are. Stop functioning until someone wakes you up, shakes you up, and says, “What’s going on?” It’s not that you’re not good at those things anymore…it’s just you stopped trying. You gave up when it got hard. Don’t give up. Don’t stay down. Go find your screw, go get some gas, go get your paint and paint your world! If you can’t find it or forgot what it was…ask someone…ask Him.
11 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. 12 Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. 13 You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.
By the time I got to El Salvador I knew I was going to go to school. University of California Irvine. I just had two more years and really just wanted to finish. So I began the application process and to an awesome surprise, they practically had everything they needed since I had applied the year before. The hard part would now be to explain to everyone why I suddenly changed my mind. So this fear and worry came over me again. I thought, “No, this is stupid. I should just stay. People are going to think i’m crazy or just can’t commit to anything.” Then God came in and showed me exactly why things were working like this…
Fear of man…when I got to YWAM and shared testimony and where I’ve been and the choices I made up to that point I realized I had a real fear of man. What that meant for me pretty much was this: I made my decisions and choices based on what other people would think of me. What other people’s opinion might be dictated how I made decisions and what those decisions were. Where I was going to school, what I was going to major in, and ultimately what I was going to do with the rest of my life depended on other people. I mean I totally believe in mentors and seeking advice from those older than you, but I allowed these people to become my Gods. I know them and I love them and I knew that was never their intention, but I allowed it to happen. That’s what God wanted broken off. Not that I would try and live my life on my own and make my own
selfish desires become my reality, but to rely on Him. To ask myself what has God said and what will God think of this. That’s what this was about. So this was free will at it’s best. I literally had the option. Stay with YWAM or…go to school and finish. Picking school would attain a really big dream I had, but also really crush another. Actions speak louder than words is a weird concept. When you really want cake AND ice cream and want them just as bad.
So I told her about my decision. For about 24 hours everything was good until it sunk it what it meant for us, our relationship, and future. So one of my biggest dreams was becoming resurrected and back to life and the other would slowly die.
After a week in Guatemala we boarded a bus and headed to El Salvador. Just a 4 hour bus trip on an amazing luxurious bus ride. We left excited and prayed for Guatemala for everything that had happened there to be sealed. Now it was time for a new country and new vision. With that, we prayed for what God had for us in El Salvador.
You ever meet someone and just know there’s something different about them? Well that’s not exactly how it turned out for me. I was depressed. Most of any of my relationships with the opposite sex had been pretty bad. Ended in a lot of heartache for either me or the other. Most didn’t last any longer than a year. I was drowning in my own self-pity and sorrow. School had become something that I had to wait another year. I was angry, confused, and vulnerable. I went after God in search of only answers and what He was holding so tightly in His hands. God was desperately trying to get my attention, to bring me closer to Him, He wanted me to desperately look only into His eyes. I wasn’t having that though. I wanted answers. Why God?
Finally I settled. The emotions came to a calm and returned to normal. I thought about trying with school one more time, but failed. Then out of nowhere, I thought about something. It’s was almost like the feeling you have when you leave the house and wonder if you turned off all the lights. It’s not super drastic, but it kind of bugs you. The thought was like that.
Youth With A Mission (YWAM) in Mazatlan was the last thing really on my mind, but somehow it came to the top. All of a sudden I had an interest. I mean I had a friend who did it and I knew of a family in Mazatlan on staff there at the school (or base as most YWAMers (people in YWAM) called it). So I inquired. I mean it’s not like I had anything to lose. I had this whole year off technically and it wouldn’t hurt to grow a lot closer with God considering that my idea of Him at this point was…well not so good.
I emailed my friend and the family that was down in Mazatlan. They all had great things to say. Then I prayed, talked to my family about it, and I did it. I started writing to people to support me on this mission trip and school I wanted to attend. Money started coming in. I opened a new bank account so none of that money would be mixed with anything else. I began to start going after God at home to prepare myself for what was ahead…but nothing would truly prepare me for what would come in those 6 months. Nothing would prepare me with the encounters I had with God, the vision and heart gave me for mission, or the relationships I made with my wonderful team, the amazing staff, and especially her.
She had told all about her DTS and experience with being on staff. I met her when I was like 16. We grew up in the same town, went on a short term mission trip with our church. I had one of those little immature crushes on her and never told her…probably because she was trying to set me up with her cousin. Then that next year she left. I put her to the back of my mind and grew up. We had little communication and it was rare when we did speak. But here she was in Mazatlan. I contacted her only for some information about Mazatlan, but what happened later really surprised me.
So I went to Mazatlan and reconnected with her after all these years in person. We were bound by the rules of YWAM that student and staff could not date. Well to be perfectly honest, it was me that was really having a hard time. She was full of integrity and never budged and for that I am so thankful. For me, it was weird to find different ways to show I cared. For me, if there were not rules most of my ways to show affection would have be physical. So here I was, six months ahead and challenged with showing this amazing girl how much I cared for her in a whole new way…