Backpackers DTS 2013 Update!
It has been an incredible summer here in Idaho for Beth and I! God brought us 7 amazing students and two new full time staff for the Backpackers Discipleship Training School. The 12 weeks of the lecture phase flew by as we watched God show up and meet with each of us, revealing more of who He is and what His plans for us are. We spent much of the summer outdoors backpacking, kayaking, and camping. We had some incredible experiences of team building, seeing God’s beauty, and learning more about our Creator’s character from His creation. Each week we had a different speaker come and teach on a different topic such as Evangelism, The Word of God, Biblical Worldview, The Father Heart of God, Spiritual Warfare, Identity, etc. This year we were blessed to have Greg Hoffman from my home church in Salem as well as Beth’s parents, Eric and Joanna Barker all the way from England, come and teach for the DTS. We are so blessed to be able to be a part of this ministry!
A week ago yesterday we dropped our students off at the Seattle airport in the capable hands of the two staff members going on outreach with them. Beth and I were not able to go on the outreach due to Beth’s immigration regulations but we are confident in the young leaders God brought for us to train. We helped them plan an outreach to Northern India where they will be coming alongside full time missionaries to serve. Some things they have planned for them are: slum evangelism, encouraging churches, kids camps, flood disaster relief, hygiene teachings, teaching English, lots of prayer, and of course many cups of chai as relationships are formed and the nation of India is discipled one by one. The team will spend the next 2 1/2 months in India and then rejoin us in Idaho for a week of debrief. Please join us in prayer for them as they minister and point people to Jesus![pextestim pex_attr_name=”Jennifer Reece, 17″ pex_attr_parallax=”disabled”]During our first week on the trail it rained the first couple days and I was in a horrible mood, on the third day the sun came out and we decided to hike up one of the mountains, I made it half way up and took a seat right on the edge of a waterfall. Half of the group continued up to the very top and the other half decided to go back down so I was left on my own. For a few weeks up until then I had noticed that I had gotten myself into strange situations that I was alone and I sensed that God had been trying to get me alone for some reason, this was the moment He had in mind. I looked out over the valley I had just come from and thought back to a video from our orientation week, it was the sound of crickets slowed down and it sounded like they were saying “Holy Holy Holy” the crickets were created to say that, and I thought “Then I wonder what the water is saying?” I closed my eyes and began to really listen to what was being said. The water rushing over the side of the mountain was singing out “Beautiful is my creator!” All at once I was completely overwhelmed by what was being said I literally pressed my hands over my ears and hid my head in my knees. I couldn’t believe what just happened, I had witnessed the creations doing what they were created to do and I thought “am I doing what I was created to do?” I had a sense that I wasn’t to the extent that I could. I closed my eyes tightly and prayed from my heart “God, I’m here! I can hear you, but I want to see you, let me feel you!” In my head I was pretty doubtful, I knew he wasn’t going to just appear right in front of me in his white robes and halo announcing “Jennifer! It is I, Jesus!” But I did want to see him…..as soon as I asked to feel him the Wind picked up speed and force and literally knocked me forward and I almost fell off of the mountain. HE HAD DONE IT! He had let me feel him and see him at the same time. Since that afternoon I don’t doubt that I can see him whenever I want, I just look at the Wind moving through the trees and know.[/pextestim]