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What I Learned in DTS

As the REACH teams prepared to leave for outreach, we were curious…what were some of the things they learned in DTS (discipleship training school)? We asked a few of them to share their thoughts and searched through their blog entries to share some of their insights with you.

Last names omitted or names changed for security.

Team Canada

Micaela: One of the sessions that really hit home for me was when Galen Burkholder spoke about global realities. One thing that broke my heart was when he said that 49,000 people die daily without ever hearing about the gospel. It really moved me to see how passionate Galen was over this devastating fact, so much so that he was in tears. I think in America it’s so easy to get caught up in our comfortable lives because everything we could ever need or want is so easily accessible, while all across the globe many people are trying to live on less than $1.25 a day.

Lexi: Sometimes I forget that as a family of Christ this is how we encourage and challenge one another. We pray blessings over each other and it is simply because we want to love each other the same way our father loves us. We need to be united and strengthen our brothers and sisters and be willing to do that in any way possible. That is one of the biggest blessing I have been seeing here at DTS. I’m surrounded by family who loves me and wants to see me grow, and through that I can take that love I feel and share it with the world.

Hope: One of the sessions that stuck out to me recently was on the topic of pride. Brian Troyer, our speaker, gave us a list of 34 fruits of pride. One of them was, “You keep from getting involved because of what others might think of you.” I didn’t realize that was a fruit of pride and it has made me re-examine myself and the way I look at life.

Follow along with team Canada here >

Team Himalayas

Jeshua: We have been learning a lot about how to deal with spiritual warfare and also about different religions so as to understand where others are coming from. Coming here, my initial thoughts were that spiritual warfare wouldn’t occur, but I have found that as the enemy loses its ground in certain areas of our lives and Father begins to make whole our brokenness, the enemy will do anything to stop that. To see the work that Father has been doing in every individual here is just beautiful to say the least. Also, to see everyone with their giftings put together for this purpose—to pray and encourage inside of brokenness—has given me a new understanding of what it means to be his unified body.

Regina: These past three months, God has been showing me the reality that I am nothing on my own, but that he has equipped me with everything I need. His power resides in me. His love pours through me. His joy comes out of me. Everything that I am is because of who he is! I am so grateful for my amazing Father who sees my weaknesses and loves me anyway. That is who my Father IS!

For more from Team Himalayas >

Team North Africa

Levi: Tom is a man that we met while handing out lunches and praying for people at the library. He is a homeless man and one of his prayer requests what that his raccoon companion wouldn’t steal the sandwich we gave him. We talked for quite a while and got to hear a lot of his life story. But as we were starting to leave and go our separate ways he said, “one last thing,” collected himself, and with tear-filled eyes he said, “Thank you. People think I’m not important because I’m homeless. But I just really love talking to people.” When I looked into his eyes I saw happiness. He has been overlooked and cast aside by so many people. It really touched my heart. We can pray for the people we meet or give them food, but we also have the opportunity to be Jesus to them just simply by sitting there and listening to their story!

Asher: As we were praying, the Holy Spirit gave me this beautiful picture: there was a hill in the middle of this canvas, there was a cross on top of this hill, there were millions of people all around this hill at a lower level, there was a beautiful sunset in the background, and (most importantly) my Brother was there at the cross and standing right beside him, there was me, and he loved me for just being me.

Follow along with the North Africa outreach here >

Team South Asia

Eric: I learned a lot from classes on spiritual warfare. It was encouraging to be reminded that Jesus is inside each one of us and that we don’t have to fear the devil and demons. God will always protect us from them and that is so encouraging to me! We have power in the name of Jesus! And that pumps me up!!

More from Team South Asia >

Team Spain

Joel: I had a conversation this week with an eight-year old (who I’ll call James) at our volunteer location. I had the honor of sharing with this child of God, the love and mercy of our perfect Father. After talking with him about what Jesus says about our enemies (he had been arguing with another kid) and explaining how Jesus takes away our sins, James was brought to tears. I’m not sure if he was crying because of the pain he felt in his life or because of the power of the Good News, but my heart broke for him as we sat on the ground in the middle of the trailer park and mourned together. We then had a conversation together talking to Jesus, inviting him to come and always be with us, and to help us love our enemies. James is definitely good soil (Mt. 13:8), and I have been praising the Father for the opportunity to share my best Friend with him.

Lynette: Do we face suffering with zeal? In Peter’s letters, he provides encouragement on facing suffering. “For Christ also died for sins once for all, the just for all, the just for the unjust, so that He might bring us to God, having been put to death in the flesh, but made alive in the spirit” (1 Peter 3:18). Liberation made possible! What a promise! I was encouraged, reassured, and emboldened. Who is there to harm me if I am zealous for that which is righteousness? In one session, Kevin Mayer gave us this thought to ponder: “If we want to be a world changer, we will suffer. And the only way that suffering makes sense is if we truly understand the big picture and the end result.” Bringing glory to God and living in eternity praising Him is the big picture. Gloria!

Team Spain blogs here >

Praise God with us for all he taught this great group of REACHers during DTS. Pray for them as they begin their outreaches—for a deep relationship with Jesus, unity among teams, healthy cultural bonding, and a love for God’s world and his precious people!