Last year in February my friend Becki who is a DTS staff for their Justice focus DTS at another YWAM base told me about the Shine Seminar that the YWAM Amsterdam base has once a year. As soon as my friend Becki told me about it, I got really excited about the possibility to be able to get some more awareness and training in the area of fighting human trafficking because this is something that God had begun to take me on a journey of discovering His heart that breaks for this injustice issue when He started to burn on my heart the nation of Cambodia in September 2014 which is when He began to open my eyes to this issue.
It was not possible to go to the Shine Seminar last year because the timing was not right since it was around the same time as the DTS 2014 outreach that I helped staff in Albania, then Becki’s outreach team came to our base and then the base I serve at had an in house staff retreat.
However, God did opened up the doors for me to go to the Shine conference last year in April which was in Buzau, Romania and that was an incredible opportunity to be able to meet people who are already ministering in this area and to hear their passionate hearts of how God had called them to reach out to the hurting and the vulnerable people who are trapped in the injustice of human trafficking.
If you are interested in reading my blog I wrote on the Shine Conference here is the link and in this entry I have also included a bit more of the journey of how God led me up to that point as well.
Shine Conference blog post link:
I decided that since it was not possible to go to the Shine Seminar last year if it is still burning on my heart to go for the next school which is in April 2016, I would apply for it. I prayed about it and I felt in my heart that God wanted me to go so I completed the application and sent it in at the beginning of December right before I left to go to the Czech Republic. I didn’t hear anything for just over a month but during that waiting time to receive the news of my acceptance I just kept praying about it and surrendering it to God.
On January 12, 2016 I checked my e-mail and I got extremely great news that filled my heart with so much joy to the overflowing because it was a real confirmation to me that God wanted me to go to the Shine Seminar and I was so very grateful for the door that He had opened up for me to get this training!
Below is the first paragraph from the e-mail that I got from the YWAM Amsterdam base:
“We finished processing your application as a team today, and I’m happy to inform you that after praying and reading it through along with your reference, you have been accepted for the Shine seminar Spring of 2016 in Amsterdam, Netherlands :)! (Drum roll :)”
Yea, God is so good!! I’m so very excited for this opportunity that God has opened up for me for this year and I can’t wait to see what He has in store for me in the future especially to bring His Kingdom into the dark places in the world of the injustice issue that breaks His heart of human trafficking.
If you would like to know some more information about the Shine Seminar here is information that I got from the YWAM Amsterdam base’s website on it:
Shine Seminar is a six week course held in Amsterdam. It is designed to promote a healthy understanding of injustice and the Christian response. Through the course, Shine hopes to provide resources and practical tools, while mobilizing and connecting those who desire to pursue a long-term missions calling as an activist or missions work in communities impacted by the global sex trade.
The majority of lectures will be held in the context of YWAM’s Lighthouse building located in the center of the Red Light District, Amsterdam. Their goal is to provide a live-learn environment: a mixture of lecture, dialogue and hands on experience. Shine will address commercial sexual exploitation, human trafficking, prostitution and demand from multiple perspectives.
Throughout the seminar you will hear from speakers on topics ranging from a biblical perspective on justice and intercession to a snapshot of consumer economics, research on trafficking/ prostitution, from those working in government agencies or community NGO’s.
At the end of the course the participant should be able to host a basic training on both the sex trade and the consumer economics that drive the business. They should have tools to network with organizations and activists, as well as some basic experience in the field in order to relate with victims. They should be able to intercede fueled by knowledge and have basic understanding of biblical justice. They should be able to problem solve trigger points in their own faith, discovering methods of self-care as they address these heavy topics.
The Shine Seminar will be from April 7 – May 21, 2016. The cost for the tuition is 1,200 Euro, which covers everything for the 6 weeks of the training course at the YWAM base in Amsterdam. To be honest as of right now I do not really have the finances to go but I do believe that God has spoken to me to get this training as a preparation time for the next season that He is calling me into for the future. I do not exactly know what that next season will look like but feel like right now God has brought me into another waiting season as He is preparing and training me of what He has in store for me next.
I have some ideas that God has dropped in my heart like staffing or possibility leading a Justice focus DTS with a specific focus on human trafficking which would include taking short-term outreach teams to different nations or getting involved with ministry locally here in Romania to girls who are in prostitution. Right now I really feel strongly on my heart that God wants me to take it one step at a time as I wait on Him and listen to His voice as He leads me step by step and not to rush ahead of God in anyway.
Last summer I read a couple of books that Christine Caine wrote. She is passionate about fighting against human trafficking and she is the founder along with her husband for the A21 Campaign. God really spoke to me a lot through those books. I would like to share a quote that really stood out to me a lot from the book called Undaunted: Daring to do what God calls you to do.
“Listen to what God keeps bringing to your attention, what he interrupts your thoughts and your days with. In those things, you will recognize his leading.”
It says in John 10:27: “My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me.” I believe in my heart as I continue to take time to listen to God’s voice, follow His leading He will continue to show me the way that He is calling me to go. The Lord has been continually been bringing to my attention and interrupting my thoughts especially since September 2014 of how His heart breaks for the injustice issue of human trafficking.
In the past when I had spent time waiting on God for where He was leading me to go next in my journey the Lord continually speaks to me His peace, confirmation through His word and He brings clarity of how He leads me to the next open door. Sometimes in the past when I have waited on the Lord, He has even shown me a picture of a Shepherd’s staff which reminds me from the scripture in Psalm 23 and in John 10 that Jesus is our good Shepherd and I am one of his sheep.
When it was my birthday last year on October 15th, I was so very encouraged of how I had received many encouraging words and prophetic words from so many people that love and care for me. I was so touched when I read them, it really spoke to my heart and uplifted my spirit. Last year on my birthday I also felt in my heart to sit down and write a birthday letter from Abba Father as I waited on Him and listened to His still small voice.
I would like to share with you one of the paragraphs from my letter I received from the Lord:
“Sometimes you may not truly understand the journey that you are on but just trust me with every step that you take in this life journey with me because it is truly an adventure and I am with you every step of the way. I will never lead you astray so you never have to worry about that so just continue to trust in my still small voice every day.”
On Wednesday February 10th, I bought my plane ticket in faith for the Shine Seminar. I will take an overnight bus from Târgu Mureş where I live on Tuesday April 5th and I will arrive early in the morning at the Budapest airport the next day. I will fly out from the Budapest airport on Wednesday April 6th at 11:20am and arrive in Amsterdam at 13:30 (1:30pm). The Shine Seminar will be from April 7th – May 21st. I will fly out from Amsterdam on May 21st at 14:20 (2:20pm) and I will arrive at the Budapest airport at 16:15 (4:15pm).
Every other year YWAM Central Europe region has a staff gathering. The last time it was in May 2014 but I couldn’t go to it last time because I was a DTS student at that time but this year I would really like to go to it because it is a really great opportunity to meet other YWAM missionaries who are serving in this region and I also recently found out Loren and Darlene Cunningham who are the founders of YWAM will be joining us this year too which is really exciting news! The conference will be in Vajta, Hungary from May 23rd – 27th.
Today I just found out the cost for the conference which will be 145 Euro. I will also need to raise the finances for this as well and I would like to go to the YWAM Central European staff gathering right after the Shine Seminar since the days are only a few days apart from each other. I think it is amazing how God had arrange the dates like it is which works so perfectly so I will see if I can stay at the YWAM Budapest base for a couple of nights, then travel with some staff from the base to Vajta and then after the conference return home to Târgu Mureş, Romania on May 27th.
I will need to raise financial support to go to the Shine Seminar and to the YWAM Central European staff gathering.
Here is the breakdown of the costs:
• Shine Seminar tuition: 1,200 Euro ($1,328 USD/$1,825 CAD)
• Airline ticket: 145 Euro ($160 USD/$220 CAD)
• YWAM Central European staff gathering: 145 Euro ($160 USD/$220 CAD)
Total: 1,490 Euro ($1,648 USD/$2,265 CAD)
I praise God that He is our Jehovah Jireh and He is our provider. It says in Philippians 1:19 “And my God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus.” I do believe and have faith in my heart that God will provide for all of my needs for me to get this training and go to the YWAM conference but I have to be honest I need a bit of help with meeting this huge financial need that is before me.
Would you please prayerfully consider sowing a seed for me to be able to go to the Shine Seminar and the Central European staff gathering? I honestly cannot do this alone but I need people like you to join with me in your prayers and to sow a financial seed as well. Any size gift small or big would be a huge help for me to get this training on human trafficking God is calling me to do and also the blessing to be able to go to the YWAM Central European staff gathering as well. Also, any financial support that is sent to the YWAM funding office either in Vancouver, Canada or in Texas, USA you will be able to receive an income tax receipt for any size donation. I have provided the addresses below.
If you have read this blog to the end than I would like to take a moment to thank-you for taking the time to read it and hear a bit of my heart of the journey that God has been leading me on of how He is preparing me to do ministry to girls who have been trafficked and to fight against the injustice issue of human trafficking.
I would like to thank-you in advance for all of your prayers and any gift you could help me with. I really appreciate it beyond what I could possibility put into words.
Financial support can be sent to:
In Canada: (please have my name written on the memo line with my code WA15)
YWAM Project Funding, Box 57100, RPO East Hastings, Vancouver BC, V5K 5G6
You can check here for more information on how to support me in Canada:
In the States: (please have your names on a separate paper – it cannot be on the cheque)
YWAM, PO Box 3000, Garden Valley, TX 75771-3000