Remember how the LORD your God led you all the way in the wilderness these forty years, to humble and test you in order to know what was in your heart, whether or not you would keep his commands… Know then in your heart that as a man disciplines his son, so the LORD God disciplines you.

— Deuteronomy 8:2&5

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It has been the cry of my heart for years that God would call me to be a missionary and use me to do something significant for Him. Last year God closed the door on what I had been counting on doing and longing for. I was upset, I couldn’t accept the reality of it and believed it would still happen. Then God showed me why I was so upset. I had my own plans that I had given my life to and when God changed them, not only was that moment shaken, but my whole future.

It didn’t happen just once. God also opened a door I counted on being closed. I wrestled within my heart and fought the will of God, until finally I accepted it and followed Him. I can’t explain the peace that filled my whole being each time I surrendered my plans and submitted to God. He waited so patiently for me, just like a loving Father, not letting me have my own way.

Now as I look back I realize that for the longest time I had fooled myself into thinking, I was submitting to God’s plan. In my outward actions I was, but my heart was set on the things I wanted to do. Without knowing it, I put my plans above God. They were good things I was longing for, but when they became more important to me than God, my walk with the Lord was hindered. As I read this verse from Deuteronomy, I see what God was been doing. I thought He was keeping me from something good, instead all this time He has been patiently teaching me to follow Him and preparing me for what lies ahead. He’s been testing my heart just as He did to the Israelites, to see if I’m really willing to obey His commands; He’s disciplined me in a gentle and Fatherly way.

My longings aren’t gone. I still hope and pray for God to open the door He closed, yet I know His timing is best – better than any of the plans I have. I hope that when God changes my plans I will be quick to surrender to His ways. I may have learned this lesson once or twice, but I have to continually surrender my plans to God. Every day is a choice.

—Disciple in GFA Discipleship Program



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discipleship-blog-radioDuring our time in School of Discipleship, we have the opportunity to assist local ministries.  This provides us both a way to see how others live out their love for God, and it gives us the opportunity to partner with them in a practical way, in order that together we can be a part of advancing God’s kingdom. A couple of weeks ago, we had such an opportunity. We spent the morning putting together media players for Galcom. Galcom is an organisation that builds radios and media players for reaching people with the gospel who are illiterate or don’t have access to written copies of Scripture. The radios are designed so that only certain stations can be tuned in.

Assembling the players required some of the students to solder the batteries to the players; I was involved in placing padding within the player so that the components would not shift over time. Batteries and mini sd cards also had to be installed. Finally they were all tested to if the audio recordings worked. As the players were headed to a foreign country, we got to hear the first verse of Genesis in another language over and over.

Galcom was not at liberty to tell us exactly where the radios were headed. They were, however, going to an area where access to the Scriptures is limited. Partially through our efforts a considerable number of people will be able to hear the Bible in their own language even if they can’t read it.

Disciple in GFA Discipleship Program



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We, Canadian students, had the awesome privilege to visit the US office for a week. It gave us an opportunity to serve the staff, volunteer in the office and part take in some fun events. I can see how with a negative mindset it could have been a dread. However, I told myself that I would serve like never before. After all, serving gives greater joy anyway than wanting to be served. I prayed about having the right heart about going. The Lord answered and it was the most amazing time ever.

We had the privilege to room with the US students during our stay. We got to help with cooking, cleaning and also sitting in during their classes. We took part in house dinners, celebrations, and even the Hog Slog race. The thing that I took note of most is the fellowship we as Christians get to have. When we arrived, we were not only welcomed with open arms, but there was an instant connection. There is a common bond in what Christ has done for us and that we are fellow labourers in the Gospel. Paul the Apostle understood that type of bond, and he longed for believers to live in unity. This instant connection with the students, was in that we are all disciples of Christ, that we’re going through the same School of Discipleship program and labouring and reaching the lost together from a distance. So sharing our joys and struggles was a great joy and encouragement.

Being in the family of Christ is the greatest blessing for someone on earth. The church, the body of believers and community living has become a lot clearer for me in this past year. We are made to distribute our gifts and talents within the church. We are not meant to be lone rangers walking this earth but we have each other and it’s Christ alone that made it possible.

This is my commandment, that ye love one another, as I have loved you. Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.

— John 15:12-13

—Disciple



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God is King

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discipleship-blog-God-is-kingI was recently reading the book of Ruth.  I found this story very interesting especially since the backdrop it is given is the book of Judges.   The final verse in the book of Judges states, “In those days there was no king in Israel; everyone did what was right in his own eyes.”  This phrase no king in Israel was sticking in my mind as I noticed that the first character in Ruth was Elimelech.  I have had very basic instruction in Hebrew enough to know that “El” means God and “melech” means king.  This piqued my interest God and king.  I looked it up and His name means God is king.  In Judges we see the natural appearance that there is no king and in Ruth we see the true reality that God is king.

As we continue on in the book of Ruth we see that despite his name Elimelech had no confidence that God was his king.  When things got tough he didn’t put his trust in God, but rather sought a solution in a nation that did not know God with disastrous results.  I am sure we all know what happened.

However the story does not end there.  We are introduced to Ruth, his daughter-in-law.  This is where it gets exciting.  She was not raised with the God Israel, but she possessed such a great faith in Him.  She takes God as her God and will not leave Naomi.  As a foreigner in Israel especially as a Moabitess she would be subject to the hatred of the people, but she had the confidence that God would care for them.  This attitude of Ruth is what God had intended for His people that they recognise and trust Him as king.

For you and I, what can we glean from this?  With the establishment of the Kingdom of Heaven and the New Covenant, God is our king .  Do I live in the reality that He is king and will care and provide for me, or do I attempt to look for my provision and protection from myself?  I have the testimony of Ruth and others throughout Scripture of what God will do if I trust Him and I am without excuse not to.

—School of Discipleship student



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