Two full weeks have passed since my School of Ministry Development (SOMD) began. God has been challenging our SOMD class to grow in leadership through the community experience of living at YWAM Orlando.
Dorm Life: To foster relationship between new and returning students, DTS and SOMD students share rooms during lecture phase. In my own dorm room, I have 4 roommates who are attending DTS and one fellow SOMD’er! Living in close relationship with new people always offers fresh opportunities for character development as we are daily living with one another in close quarters and challenging each other “as iron sharpens iron.”
Hospitality: As secondary students, we join with staff to welcome new students on base. This is a responsibility that is very close to my heart for 2 reasons: 1) because of my personal love of hosting people and 2) because of how much the hospitality of SOMD students positively impacted me when I myself was a newcomer.
Local Ministry at Discovery Youth Group
Our SOMD split into 3 small local ministry teams. My group is serving locally as leaders/volunteers in a youth group at Discovery Church in Winter Garden (a city west of Downtown Orlando). Last Wednesday Night, I was a part of a Missions-focused small group where the pastor taught about ASSET-BASED MINISTRY. Asset-based ministry focuses on people’s strengths and passions rather than simply focusing on their needs or the negativity of their situation. Even though I was there to serve, God taught so much through his teaching: that empowering people to serve others reminds them that they have something to offer and gives them the encouragement they need to take their eyes off their own situation. We are called to feel God’s heart for people and not simply focus on what is wrong with the world.
At this youth group, I look forward to forming relationships with the youth (ages 13-17) that attend Discovery! We will be returning to the same group every week, so this allows for a more relational kind of ministry and mentoring. I am so excited!!!
Lecture Week 1: Vision
During the first week, YWAM Orlando base leader Michael Berg taught us on “The Principles of Pioneering.” This topic reviewed the practicals of leading ministry while being led by the Holy Spirit. To illustrate his principles, Michael recounted stories from the early history of YWAM Orlando and how God led the leadership team and the Berg family through practical challenges of ministry such as real estate investment and times of community repentance.
Lecture Week 2: Finances
To be honest, “Faith and Finances” was the topic I looked forward to the most when I applied for SOMD!! Andy Miller taught us the heart and how-to’s of fundraising as a missionary. We covered areas like the Biblical Foundation, Mindsets and Approaches, and Practical Steps of fundraising. We looked at the lives of missionaries like William Carey, who was a missionary to India in the 19th century. To his supporters he said this: “I will descend into the pit if you will hold tightly to the ropes.” This is how intertwined the roles of missionary and donor are!
MY SOMD ($7500) IS FULLY FUNDED!!!
Thank you Jesus for Your miraculous provision and thank you to each one of my financial supporters. Thank you for believing in the work we are doing here at YWAM Orlando and investing in it. Last week I sent out 30+ thank you letters, and more of you have given towards my tuition since that day! If you gave towards my SOMD and haven’t received a letter yet, keep an eye out. I want to thank each one of you, from the bottom of my heart. ♥️