Thursday, March 27, 2014

YWAM Budapest | A Fresh Season of Growth

When spring finally arrives after a long winter in Hungary it just seems like everyone is suddenly in a better mood.   Café chairs come out to the sidewalk, winter coats and scarves are exchanged for sunglasses and t-shirts.  People are happy to be outside in the sunshine.  You may even catch a glimpse of a smile on some faces.  Though the winter can be long and cold it makes spring all the more welcome. 
It's the same for us in ministry.  The years and months of faithfully working and building up the coffee house make the completion all the more sweet.  We are in a new season.  There's a sense of change and anticipation for growth in the air.  Now we get to see what God will do with this amazing tool that He has provided.  It's bigger than us for sure.  Even our dreams of faith can't comprehend what the Lord has in store, how much he cares for the young people of Budapest, and how He intends to reach them with His love and forgiveness.

How exciting to be a part of this!  Of course with new victories and new opportunities come new challenges and questions:  How will we carry out the vision?  Who are the laborers and where will they come from?  God knows.  It's really been His vision from the beginning anyway.  In a similar way we are thrilled to have a DTS planned for this September after a season of drought.  It's exciting just to be praying for the students and all the God will do in them, and in the life of the base.  He has called us to be a training base.  It feels good to take our winter coat off and feel the warmth of the sunshine - to feel like we're once again on track in the areas the Lord has called us to.  Although the cold winter days are tough to endure sometimes, they don't last forever, making way eventually for a new season of growth, giving way to warmth and joyful new beginnings.

-Steve Johnson
YWAM Budapest base leader

read more on the opening of the YWAM Budapest Ministry Centre here

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Introducing | YWAM Uzice, Serbia

One of our newest Central European YWAMers, Katrine Drevon, introduces her team to us...

YWAM Serbia:  Team leaders Chris & Mirjam Klop from the Netherlands,
their daughter Nadia (2), Andrew from the US and myself.

Chris and Mirjam has already spent about 5 years in Serbia and before that they worked with YWAM in Romania, so they are veterans…  They have the most adorable 2 year old in the whole world!  Nadia very quickly became my best friend and I just love to make her laugh – priceless!  She has that perky look in her eyes and I never knew that a 2 year old could have such a wonderful sense of humor but she definitely does!

Mirjam, besides being a mom, is also a teacher and running a program for disabled people at the Cultural Center in the city, teaching them English.  Chris and Mirjam leads the local team here but are also coordinators for YWAM Central Europe and the DTS programs.  Mirjam is one of those people who just spreads joy wherever she is.  She always has a smile and a good story and no matter how you felt before, there’s just no way you’re not smiling from deep down in your heart after you’ve been around her.

Chris is a solid man of God.  He has no other agenda than to follow God wherever He leads and to do everything in his power to fulfill God’s will.  He is a man of prayer and leads by example and I have come to respect him a lot.  I’ve also come to know that we have somewhat similar humor, which is something I thoroughly enjoy!

Andrew grew up in Texas and faithfully wears his cowboy boots!  He’s been staffing with YWAM Serbia for the past 2 years and is currently eagerly awaiting his own wedding, coming up in August.  Andrew has walked the streets of Užice a lot longer than I have, so I try to lurk every bit of useful information out of him and learn from his experiences in addition to making my own.  He has connections all over the city and knows all the good places to get free wi-fi…

Several evenings weekly we do cafe ministry.  It's a local outreach where we meet up with people that we know or don't know, contacts we have made during the week or just random people that drop in…  Every Wednesday night we have English Club at one of the cafes in town and invite anyone that is interested to come and share conversations in English.  Mostly young people come, happy to have a place to practice what they are learning in school, and it doesn't take a long time before they ask why we are here and from there on the way is open and paved to share the Gospel. 

For me, Serbia is now the 7th country that I have lived in.  Only God knows if that list will grow or if this is my final destination.  For now the plan is to work with YWAM here at least for the next 2 years.  So I have unpacked my suitcase, written my Serbian phone number with ink in my planner and started taking Serbian lessons.  This is home now.
I love this team.  I love being in Serbia.

-Katrine Drevon 
YWAM Užice, Serbia 
you can find out more about on Katrine on her personal blog: http://katrinedrevon.wordpress.com/ 

Monday, March 24, 2014

WELG | A story

My Western European Leadership Gathering (WELG) story

By Ana Maria Fumey
YWAM Cluj
Romania 

After travelling a long way by car from Romania to France with a stop for rest at our family in Switzerland, we landed in the middle of Lyon, surrounded by lots and lots of YWAM-ers that I have never met in my life.

The expectancy of something awesome and exciting was building in my heart as I started to observe different nations, colors and languages. It just felt right to be in the middle of the 249 participants. From the beginning it was this anticipation of being something special. And it was!
The beautiful venue - The Grand Temple

Every meeting was started with worship and for me every time was like a place where the Father found pleasure to show up and speak to me. These times were so intense and the "food" was so good that after a few hours I would say, "Lord if the conference will end here and now, there will be enough things for me to meditate on..."

I sat down with great leaders and the grandparents of this big movement we call YWAM. While talking to them it was so nice to observe the same things that I saw when I first joined YWAM. Humble leaders with great value and with a lot of wisdom. I loved being around them and hope some of that wisdom rubbed off on me also.

The WELG was a great opportunity to see what God is doing in Western Europe and what resources are in the body of Christ. These kinds of conferences enlarge our visions for our regions and motivates, encourages us to go on knowing that we are not alone in our own little team or base!

One moment of significance was when Western Europe prayed for Central Europe. During that I just felt how God is raising Central Europe up and how we are becoming part of a bigger picture and how we are part of that second wave that our leaders are talking about.

Great Word
Lynn Green spoke about  being the ones to see the next wave of YWAM missionaries taking the continents. He reminded us of the covenant that God made with Loren Cunningham and as we are all part of that we will see it  being fulfilled. A covenant demands PERSISTENCE and if we OBEY the PROMISE that God made to Loren we will walk in the same COVENANT. Lynn said, that we should get ready for an increase of 10 times more than 5 years ago. He also said that we have an anointing and we have a wave, but the condition to see revival and to catch this next wave is to: stay available to God, to hear His voice, to confess our sins to one another and to realign with holiness. The next wave will not be bigger than our brokenness. Brokenness is letting God go into all our deep areas and tell Jesus, it's all yours. Surrender is not a test but a total abandonment in His will.

Lynn with his French translator

One last thing...

One morning we were asked and challenged to answer to a simple question: "How is our thirst for God? How is it if one day we do not spent time with God? How is it after 3 days, one month without time with God?"

A lot of times we can not tell how thirsty we are and we believe we are ok, but after a while we feel as we need more rest, more breaks from the ministry. To be able to overcome this need, we need to pray deep, to have healthy relationships and to let people be around us and help us.

"On the last and greatest day of the festival, Jesus stood and said in a loud voice, “Let anyone who is thirsty come to me and drink. Whoever believes in me, as Scripture has said, rivers of living water will flow from within them.” (John 7:3738)


I am ending by listing a few question for us to ponder upon:
How is our thirst? 
How broken are we?
Is surrender part of our daily walk with God?

May God bless you as you ponder on these things...


For more on Ana Maria and her husband, Simeon's ministry you can go to their blog on http://manamaria21.wordpress.com/