Today we have Don with us from Chicago who works as a tradesman in the construction industry. Don is passionate about travel, personal finance and small business. He wants others to experience freedom in finance and to know they were made for more.
What was it like returning to “normal life” after your DTS? What were struggles? How did you overcome them?
“Normal life” resumed for my wife Nicole and myself after a year of staffing in 2013.
We moved back to Chicago metro area to be near family, along with work opportunities. Getting into a routine was easy however finding faith filled friends was not so much.
A big struggle was finding a church home with thriving young people and friends that loved Jesus above all else. This was a struggle for many years to find and make community, along with the fact of being in our 20’s. It seems like folks move around a lot in the prospect of new work and lifestyle.
While it took time to find this community and friendship, it did happen. We stayed faithful prayed for community lived our lives the Lord blessed us thru that.
Struggle number two that comes to mind that I face(ed). Is this internal battle of feeling that your not doing enough. You’re “home” working for a paycheck and have so many obligations that differ so much from a 6-month stay with YWAM. There is a feeling that your “not on mission” your just working, and that isn’t good enough. This is mostly a broken mindset.
Your time with YWAM is a unique experience unlike many other opportunities one may ever have. This has to be recognized! It will help shape you as your transition home and realize your potential there with your family and friends. You bring your testimony and faith into the workplace and your daily life unlike ever before. You’ll have a fresh start to reach folks you maybe looked past before or for the very first time.
What do you wish you know now that you didn’t know upon returning home after your time with YWAM?
Not to expect non-Christians to act like Christians. Folks don’t always do the “right thing” and to expect this out of people that do not know Christ is just silly. On the opposite hand, to find a way to encourage, exalt and rebuke a Christian friend can also be tough sometimes too.
Of those you ran with in your YWAM time, what are they up to and how are they doing?
I keep very well connected personal with many Ywamers still active with the ministry lifestyle and “home”. In my opinion that most are doing well. It shaped their core beliefs and gave them a foundation to grow up with and into. While no one is perfect everyone who stayed focused on Christ and their desire with him has grown and thrived while at home.
What did you get at your DTS that has followed you and informed your day-to-day life?
A relationship friendship with Christ unlike one I had known. A mindset to walk with him everyday. It has helped me in literally all I do and who I am.
What things are bringing you the most joy in your friendship with Jesus?
Worship times/Fun podcasts and sermons. I myself also got my first dog a few years ago. This little dog was so fun of energy and excitement. A daily walk(s) were never enough.
We started to ride bikes instead with the doggo running on my side. This intentional time with my dog also gave me a free time to just ride, pray and talk with God and my dog. It sounds silly but it was that daily action of going out with her the dog and the Lord. Just being intentional and excited! This is something we still do nearly daily for 5+ years.
In what ways have you been able to make God known there in your own sphere?
Honest conversations with others. It’s really not enough for people to know you’re a christian. You need to share and talk about Jesus with them. It doesn’t have to be your only conversation piece. Don’t be a weirdo. But the truth is we should look different than the world.
What are you passionate about? What things have you been stirred to engage in? What are you praying into right now?
A passion of mine as always been travel, personal finance and small business. These passions have created unique experiences and lead me to many people I wouldn’t have met otherwise. These come from a heart of wanting more for people. Dream big, experience more, do more and be wholesome.
Can you tell us about your involvement with your home Church?
Currently my wife and myself are weekly small group leaders with a larger local church. We run or host a weekly young marrieds group with about 4-5 weekly couples. This has been very fun for us and it’s an easy way to step out. There is always many opportunities to serve in the local church too.
Can you suggest any awesome music, ministries, resources that have helped you after leaving base life?
In general, I recommend podcasts of your favorite pastors and churches that help you stay engaged with God. I also recommend listening to podcasts of anything your interested in. It doesn’t always have to be something religious, but something you are passionate about.
On the practical side of life, a resource for leaving base life would be investing in your understanding of personal financial. If you’re already good at managing your personal finance, great! If you’re lacking in it, invest into that side of yourself too.
God has given us wisdom to be faithful with what we have been given and we must use wisdom to steward all things well.
YWAM Beyond or YWAM does not necessarily endorse the opinions or resources stated in these interviews. They are solely the thoughts and experiences of the individual being interviewed.