In 2013 when I fired myself from running the Communications Office at YWAM Salem I started a transition to something that I had always wanted. To be out of the office. I learned so many great things during the time in there however, I always had a longing for filming, climbing, building, backpacking, teaching…anything that would inspire others to pursue this Jesus guy. It started off with filming some spots for Mission Adventures, than Brazil and Argentina with the Ropes Courses, after that researching with YWAM Va about doing an AT DTS, prepping for that with Jordan and Ruth Horner, leading backpacking teams with YWAM Bishop, and teaching in Schools about preparing for international travel and talking to people who, mostly have a vagabond/free spirit philosophy way of life about them. All the while hanging out with climbers and dirtbags of sort from around the world.
First of all, my supporters are at the top of the list. Without the generous praying and giving (time, money, open bed) each month from people from all over the world I would be living a much different life.
Second, I am so very thankful for an organization that I can work with that gives the freedom to dream. When working in the Communications Office, Josh and I came up with Inspire|Train|Go as the slogan for YWAM Salem. There hasn’t been a better picture to explain what I God wants to accomplish in the mission field. I get to partner with YWAM Salem.
Third, Jeff Nelson and the NIKO/Ropes Team. In my DTS I didn’t have enough money to go on outreach and Jeff was the one who went to bat for me before the leadership to ask them if I could complete the school by working part-time on the Ropes Course. Little did I know, I would be spending most of my years under his leadership and direction. He wasn’t only building Ropes Courses but instead, ingraining Godly values into cultures, relationships and individuals across the board. The NIKO team (Sue and Rho) have done the same and challenged me in the way I view myself in the role of leadership. Be that speaking in public or organizing a large group of people. These three people truly have invested years into me. Thank you guys so much.
Then there is Ruth, Jordan, Aaron and Emily. These people are the real deal. I met them doing my first Wilderness First Responder Course at YWAM Salem and connected throughout the years leading teams in the back country, climbing, and just living life. Just recently I read a blog and this was in it…
“I think the best characteristic you can ask of a friend is to believe in you. When you talk to them about something, they react with encouragement (or at least without discouragement), no matter how ridiculous the idea. They see the world in grey, not in black and white; in terms of possibility, not limitations. They react to a dream by starting to make plans of how to do it, not make excuses about why it can’t be done. Maybe it’s confidence, naïveté, foolishness, or a little of all three, but the people standing next to you in your summit photos probably have something like it.” Brenden – Semi Rad
So where ever you find yourself. Be an encourager, be a person who speaks life.