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What Life After Lockdown Really Feels Like | YFNZ Story

Posted on Jun 25, 2020, in the categories: YFNZ Story
What Life After Lockdown Really Feels Like | YFNZ Story

I held my breath.  The whole nation waited for the 4PM announcement—would the Prime Minister and the health advisor really say it? New Zealand shut down hard and fast, closing borders and ordering one of the strictest lockdowns in the world. Could it actually end? "We did it." And with that, lockdown in New Zealand was complete.…

When My Mess Became My Song | YFNZ Story

Posted on Jun 11, 2020, in the categories: Post-DTS, School of Worship, DTS, Worship Track, YFNZ Story
When My Mess Became My Song | YFNZ Story

It was my second week of School of Worship. First-thing Tuesday morning, Wendy asked one question. "What do you really think of God?" I squirmed. Growing up in the church, we didn't talk about this stuff. But here was a Christian teacher, pushing me to be honest. I mean, I knew the Psalms were littered with raw, messy lyrics. So I couldn't keep sugar-coating my theology. After class, I walked straight to the Prayer Room. Armed with my journal, I settled in to two hours of live worship and prayer. Time to be honest. Messy, even. Hesitant, I started to write: You are disinterested. You don't really care about me.…

Why Does God Let Us Harm Each Other? | YFNZ Devotional

Posted on May 29, 2020, in the categories: YFNZ Devotional
Why Does God Let Us Harm Each Other? | YFNZ Devotional

Why does God let other people hurt us?   For that matter, why does He let us hurt ourselves? It’s because God has granted to each human the incalculable gift of free will. On one hand, it is the greatest gift He could offer us, since it makes true relationship possible. It makes art and music and poetry and amazing feats of engineering possible. It gives us the ability to dream and create and argue and think our own thoughts. It gives other people the ability to surprise us, to delight us, to comfort us. Without free will, we’re less than human, less than interesting, and might as well have remained inert clay with no breath of God breathed in. But it comes at a high price.…

What If God Asked You to Stay, Not Go? | YFNZ Story

Posted on May 21, 2020, in the categories: YFNZ Story
What If God Asked You to Stay, Not Go? | YFNZ Story

It was January in the Middle East. I stepped into the aisle of the airplane, and thought back to the conversation I had with God weeks before I left. When I had the opportunity to go on a mission trip to the Middle East, I was confronted by a very difficult question. Even though it was very unlikely for something bad to happen— Would I be willing to lay down my life to GO for Jesus?…

What If You Prayed Knowing You've Won? | YFNZ Devotional

Posted on May 14, 2020, in the categories: YFNZ Devotional
What If You Prayed Knowing You've Won? | YFNZ Devotional

I woke up one sunny morning, about halfway through our lockdown in New Zealand. I got up, made my classic breakfast of avocado on toast, and sat down on the couch to pray and get my day started. I flipped open my journal and began to write down all the difficult things I had been dealing with. Being away from family. The sickness and death of family members. And well, I was bored with being in quarantine for so long.  I started praying through my list of "issues". I asked God to heal the world. I asked Him to help my heart stop hurting from being away from family. Lastly, I asked Him to help me not be so bored. My prayer lasted about 15 seconds. I picked up my phone and started scrolling through Instagram.…

An Open Letter to a Missionary Mom

Posted on May 10, 2020, in the categories: YFNZ Story
An Open Letter to a Missionary Mom

Dear Missionary Mom,  Each year on Mother’s Day we celebrate women all over the world. We take the day to lavish them with flowers, breakfast in bed, and a day off from “mom duty”. However, this year Mother’s Day looks very different for you. You are the mother of a missionary. …

COVID-19 Ruined My Wedding | YFNZ Story

Posted on Apr 30, 2020, in the categories: YFNZ Story
COVID-19 Ruined My Wedding | YFNZ Story

As I counted down the seconds to midnight on the last day of 2019, I remember reeling with excitement for all that would come.  The anticipation grew as the clock turned to 2020; I was standing on the cusp of the most exciting adventure of my life. Michael and I had set our wedding date for May 31st at a beautiful, romantic venue nestled in the mountains of Colorado. I bought the perfect dress, we booked tickets for our honeymoon, and everything was better than I could have dreamed. This year was going to be perfect. …

Get Up, Take Your Bed, and Walk | YFNZ Devotional

Posted on Apr 23, 2020, in the categories: YFNZ Devotional
Get Up, Take Your Bed, and Walk | YFNZ Devotional

“Do you want to get well?” Jesus asked a pretty obvious question to a cripple. In John 5, there’s a multitude of invalids and sick around the pool at Bethesda. They were covered by five roofed colonnades, providing shelter from the intense heat. Rumour had it that an angel would come and “stir the waters” of the pool—the first one who got in was healed.…

Where Do You Find God’s Goodness When You’re From New York?

Posted on Apr 17, 2020, in the categories: YFNZ Story
Where Do You Find God’s Goodness When You’re From New York?

I was alone in my room in New Zealand when a song came on:   You are the Most High God, the Great I Am I skipped it.   I didn't want to listen to "joyful Jesus music". It wasn't the mood I was in—if anything, I wanted a somber worship song. I needed something that expressed my desperation for God during this lockdown. I grew up in New York City—and currently, it’s being rampaged by COVID-19.…

How 3 Months of Bedrest Prepared Me for Quarantine

Posted on Apr 9, 2020, in the categories: Post-DTS, YFNZ Story
How 3 Months of Bedrest Prepared Me for Quarantine

Do you ever look back on a rough season and think, Thank you God I went through that, because now it’s coming really in handy? After my Discipleship Training School (DTS) outreach to the Himalayas—thanks to a rare little parasite—I was on strict bedrest for three months. It was similar to what the world is facing currently with quarantine and lockdown. My life completely turned a 180 and I could no longer do what I did before. My routines, my habits, and my plans all had to change in a matter of 24 hours.…

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