YWAM Orlando Core Values: Fruitfulness

youth with a mission orlando values fruitfulness

“He is like a tree planted by streams of water that yields its fruit in season, and its leaf does not wither. In all that he does, he prospers.” - Psalm 1

At Youth With A Mission Orlando we have five Core Values that we believe God has asked us to hold to and exemplify as a community. For this YWAM Orlando blog series, we've asked members of our community to help us unpack each of these values by sharing a personal experience or testimony.

 

Fruitfulness: YWAM Orlando Core Value 3

 

Fruitful: From the place of intimacy (John 15:5) with the Lord, we are committed to working diligently toward bearing much fruit (Luke 19:11-27) in transformational discipleship and in discipling nations to bring God much glory (John 15:8)

 

Fruitfulness. I have a few thoughts about what makes a person fruitful or unfruitful: faithfulness, work ethic, and perspective are words that come to mind. I am 21 years old, freshly married, and I was addicted to drugs from ages 14 - 17.  I went through rehab and made Jesus Lord of my life in 2014. I’ll get into my ideas about fruitfulness later, but first let’s see what the Bible says about it:

 

“Be fruitful and multiply.” - Genesis 1

 

“Every branch in me that does not bear fruit he takes away, and every branch that does bear fruit he prunes, that it may bear more fruit.” - John 15

 

“The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.” - Galatians 5

 

“He is like a tree planted by streams of water that yields its fruit in season, and its leaf does not wither. In all that he does, he prospers.” - Psalm 1

 

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I’ll jump into a few things that I believe cultivate fruitfulness, starting with faithfulness. Being faithful with something means being consistent and taking care of it – whatever it may be. When I think about being faithful in light of God’s character, I consider the fact that He chooses to be Himself every single day, no matter what. To give you an idea of what I’m talking about, imagine if God said, “I think I’ll choose not to be loving, just for today.” I’m not sure what the repercussions of God changing his character for one day would be, but I imagine it would have a pretty massive effect on us. Being faithful looks like following through on a commitment. Mowing the grass, unclogging drains in the girls’ dorms, and getting up at 5 AM aren’t my favorite things to do, but I am committed to serving Jesus and His people. Someone has to do those things; if it isn’t me it would be someone else. Janitors are faithful. In the words of Shia Lebouf and Nike “Just do it.” 

 

Second on my list is having a good work ethic.

 

At 17 years old, I was lucky enough to go through a very intense discipleship rehab program called “Teen Challenge Adventure Ranch” in Northwest Arkansas. In spite of my boyhood ignorance, I could easily see there was no shortcut to hard work. Luck wouldn’t get that barn built, wishes wouldn’t help me memorize scriptures, and laziness wasn’t going to free me from drugs. I had to work very hard and do things that weren’t always my favorite to get me where I am today. I remember one of the first times I distinctly heard God speak to me. “Wyatt, are you going to be a boy, or are you going to be a man?” He challenges me with this phrase on a daily basis, but now the question sounds a bit different: “Wyatt, are you going to live like the world, or are you going to live like Me?” This can be a tempting choice sometimes, but going after Jesus feels so much better at the end of the day! Finishing that project, pressing into worship, handling that criticism, going for that extra rep in the gym makes all the difference. Farmers are hard workers; they work until the work is done, not until the clock says work is done.

 

Third on my list is perspective. I have told you briefly about my addiction. Let me tell you a quick story. One night, as a highschooler, I was driving home from a party on the highway, very drunk. I began to light a cigarette. I was not paying attention to the road that was still wet from the pouring rain. I heard a very peaceful, yet loud, voice say my name. I dropped the lighter and swerved back into my lane. I was headed directly toward an oncoming minivan. The Voice saved my life and the lives of whoever was in the other vehicle; I could have been as good as dead 100 times over. I have a perspective of thankfulness and recognition that I should no longer be alive, whether because of danger, bad decisions or sin – that is my reality. We are in need of saving every single day. I have attempted the “I can do this” perspective. I’ve gone down the “I know what I’m doing” road. Now, I am currently living in the “I really need God” perspective. I’m fairly certain you know where any other road will lead. Disciples have perspective; they know who they were, and who they are now. Knowing these things, they can’t help but live their lives in a way that reflects Jesus’ character. 

 

Discipleship is another YWAM Orlando Core Value.

 

I often use the analogy of my wife. She is my favorite person in the whole world; nobody comes close! I am always telling people about how hilarious, thoughtful and kind she is. Jesus is the same way. When you realize who He is, and what He has done for you, it’s impossible not to talk about Him! Jesus is dying to be that “spouse” to everyone in the world. He wants to be loved, thought of, laughed with, and involved in every area of life. In order to see more of God, you have to be faithful with the things and tasks He’s already given you. First, do what needs to be done -  take care of your stuff as if it belonged to Him and love your friends and strangers alike. Second, do everything 110% no matter what. Third, remember what Jesus has done for you, for the world, for each and every person in all of history, and be thankful for Him. Live like this and fruit will come up all around you. You’ll see people who need encouragement at Target. You will get opportunities you’ve never had before. You will be hungry to share about your “Spouse” and how great He is. 

 

With regard to the Great Commission, ask yourself every day, “God, how can I share the Gospel today?”

 

When it comes down to it, that’s the last thing He asked us to do - share the Gospel. He didn’t say, “Serve the homeless, go to church, spend hours in worship, listen to Bethel.” All of these things are essential to being a Christian, but it all falls short if you don’t share who Jesus is and what He has done. He wants you to bear fruit. Now go out and be a faithful janitor, a hard-working farmer, and a disciple with His perspective.

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Wyatt

Written By:

Wyatt Ledman | YWAM Orlando Staff