My Latest Adventure
Hey Seeds families! My name is Caleb and I am 18 years old. I am a Seeds Family Worship Missionary who is passionate about the gospel. I want to see God work in the lives of kids and families across the world.
In the Fall of 2020, I attended a Disciple Training School (DTS) with Youth With a Mission (YWAM) in Lakeside, Montana. The school is five months long and consists of three months in lecture phase where you study the Bible, have lectures on foundational discipleship topics, and as a result, you grow closer in your relationship with God. The second phase of the school is an overseas outreach where you apply everything you learned in Lecture Phase.
I had the amazing privilege of spending two months in the Dominican Republic with an incredible team. Our ministry consisted of work projects, evangelism, leading church services, and park ministry. I want to invite you in and tell you what I learned from my experience in the Dominican Republic.
The Big Question
As a high school graduate in 2020, there is one question I was asked countless times throughout the year. It’s the infamous “what’s next?” question. When schooling is finished, there is a whole world of opportunity and everyone wants to know what you’re doing next. This question scares a lot of young people as some truthfully don’t know what direction they are heading. In the summer I knew where I was going, so I had the comfort of telling people I’m attending a YWAM Discipleship Training School.
Fast forward a few months to the Dominican Republic (DR), where people rarely ask you what’s next. The question I got so often in America didn’t seem to exist in the DR. The culture is more family-oriented. People are hospitable, present, and want to know how you’re doing at that moment.
At one point late in my outreach, we were able to partner with a group of people from Indiana to build a house with the Homes of Hope Ministry. It was my first time interacting with Americans in over a month. As we began building the house, it didn’t take much time before multiple people started asking the dreaded questions. “What’s after this for you?”, “Where will you be living”, “How are you going to make money?”
My Thoughts on “The Question”
This is the thought I had: What if the thing I am doing right now is the most important thing I could do with my life. What if a life of service and surrender to Jesus is more crucial than attaining worldly success. What if being present in the Dominican Republic is more significant than worrying about the future.
Now I’m not saying that these questions are bad, but it certainly got me processing the meaning of them. It’s good to be looking ahead and have a game plan for the future, but on the other hand, our time here on earth is short.
James 4:14 says “yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes.”
Born to Build
When God created man, we were instilled with a desire to build. Whether that means physical houses and tall buildings, maybe it’s businesses and wealth, or it could be relationships and connections with others. No matter what it is, we were born to build. When it comes to faith, God does not force us to follow Him. We are given free will to make a choice.
The choice is this: Are you building your own kingdom or God’s kingdom? Are you doing things to benefit your life today or are you thinking about eternity? At times, we can get myopic in our perspective and only think about the next year, 3 years, or maybe 5, yet we forget about the next 10,000 years of eternity with Jesus. The reality is that we don’t take anything with us. Everything we accumulated, worked for or built with our hands falls away.
Everyone has a different calling on their life. selling all of your possessions, moving to another country, and living like John the Baptist may not be your calling. It could be to build businesses. It could be to disciple and pastor people. Maybe your calling is to be a stay-at-home parent. What matters is that we keep our eyes fixed on Jesus and the eternal plan He has for us all.
Store Your Treasures in Heaven
Matthew 6:20-21 says this: “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. 20 But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”
When you spend time reading the Bible, you are storing your treasures in heaven. When you are generous with your time and money, you are storing your treasures in heaven. If you take time to intentionally disciple and lead your family towards Jesus, you are storing treasures in heaven.
Here are a few takeaways to wrap up my experience in the Dominican Republic:
- Keep an eternal perspective.
- Find ways to be mission-oriented in the day-to-day
- No matter what you’re doing, Make Jesus the center.
Building your kingdom on earth is temporary, building the kingdom of God will make an impact that lasts for eternity.
Check out this video below of my Outreach in the DR!