Four years ago I thought I would be heading home to Canberra to live a comfortable life as a wedding photographer nurse. But one thursday night changed my life. One thursday night God got my attention by sending multiple people with specific words, I want you to stay.
We had just celebrated my completion of a Discipleship Training School, three friends and I had learned about God and took that learning to the people of Thailand and Ukraine. I was walking to the front and Tina Berry stopped me.
“Jez, Gods going to use your vulnerability to lead people”
– I was taken back. I didn’t really feel like a leader. And vulnerability didn’t really sound like leadership qualities. But i felt blessed and excited that God wanted to use me after this.
Another friend, Christina came up next.
“I want to support you an amount for the rest your time in YWAM”
– I was weirded out again. I was going home. I wasn’t staying in YWAM. What did she mean?
A couple of moments later i checked my email, and a friend from Canberra, Colin, emailed almost an exact quote.
“I want to support you for the rest of your time in missions…” but he went on to say “And i feel like God is saying this is going to be a year of abundance for you, so don’t worry about money”
– Once again… I was little weirded out. But encouraged that I could trust God for finances, which was never a thing for me, to trust God for money.
Then I sat on the back porch with John (my class mate) and Micah (a future room mate) and we discussed our future. I have photos from that conversation, but i dont remember what we spoke about. All I remember is, that conversation started something in my heart that would be completed the next day.
I was having lunch next to a man, Ian, who had kept me sane in the midst of the most insane parts of the adventure but just inviting me and John to his room to watch simpsons. It gave us space to just be dudes, and not students freaking out about how good God was. I was asking him what he was doing next, he spoke about staffing the upcoming DTS, but they were still looking for another guy staff.
Absent mindedly almost, i asked – what would that guy have to do to get on the staff team? He pointed me to Live’, the school leader and in no time at all I was sitting with Live’ eating a pie and talking about the school. Everything he said about the school got my heart excited. He spoke things that i wanted to experience and learn and do. As well as things I would be good at. And i heard my voice saying ‘I want to do that’. I told him I had to see about my business partner and my boss, but I wanted to staff the school with him.
With a simple yes, got myself into the adventure of a life time. Four years later I sit in this, my home, after staffing two schools, co-leading two schools and am currently leading my second. I have been to India, Cambodia, Uganda, East Timor, Canada, Singapore and outback Australia. I have learned things about God that i could never have imagined. I have learned skills that I didn’t know existed (budgets?) and i have lived and laughed with some of the craziest people I have ever met.
God has taken me on adventure, and all I said was yes. Every time. And i have said no on occasion, i have made many mistakes. But every time I say yes – amazing things happen.
I tell this story to say this. – I’m a simple, blue eyed, beard growing, guitar playing, boy from Canberra. I bet you, the person currently reading this, is higher trained, higher skilled then I. But even if you aren’t and even if you are –
GOD HAS A PLAN FOR YOU THAT ONLY BEGINS IN EARNEST WHEN YOU SAY YES AND GO.
So do it. Its worth it.