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  • Writer's pictureLucas Kroeker

Running the race


New years

Passport in hand after this last Christmas in Canada I was excited to see what God would be calling me into next! I left on December 29th and came back to Italy in time to celebrate new years with my community and friends before jumping into 2023.




January



January started off quick! With a new DTS about to start on the 15th of January we needed to renovate our kitchen to be able to serve the schools and community we have here. The community started off small but thanks to God for more people being called to Italy it's been growing rapidly! So with a deadline of two weeks to demolish, fix and build a new kitchen we started.


The first two weeks we're mainly focusing on practical work, serving the need of having a new kitchen. I love being able to serve using the practical skills I've learnt through the years growing up in a family with a construction business. Focusing on the practical allowed me to have lots of time as well so focus and process on what God was calling me to next.


"I lift up my eyes to the hills-- where does my help come from? My help comes from the LORD, the Maker of heaven and earth." Psalm 121 v1


This month was also a time of discernment for myself. The Discipleship Training Schools take a lot of energy, time and focus and after leading the last one I felt some hesitancy of committing to another. So I went back to the vision God had spoken when He called me here and the 3 points He gave me.


  1. True Discipleship

  2. Eternal Perspective

  3. Missionary

Taking these back to God, He reminded me that He's given me a passion to see young people on FIRE for Jesus and wanting to go and share the Gospel with the world. Also that He's given me the gift of leadership to step into this role of helping lead these Discipleship Training Schools. I was reminded that God is always relevant and we as followers of Jesus are called to be 'radically relevant' especially in this generation, to see people reached with the love of Jesus. My doubts and fears turned into hope and inspiration, I felt ready to commit to the next beautiful thing that God was gently leading me into and asking me to trust Him in.


February


A time of commitment. We had a DTS here in full swing and during that time I had committed to a new passion God had kindled in my heart. Something I had mentioned in my last newsletter recapping 2022. This is the desire so see people compelled by love to go and share the Good News with the least, last and the lost, what I believe Jesus would be doing if He was still walking the earth. But Jesus saw it better that He go to heaven and send us His Holy Spirit to empower us to continue and do what He loved to do. So with this heart and vision in mind and the opportunity coming to lead another Discipleship Training School, I committed! The school I will be apart of running will have a special focus on unreached people groups and the Middle East. I really believe that the harvest is plentiful and with that I felt the challenge to trust God for the harvest in places that don't seem the most "open" for the Gospel. So with that this DTS will be going into those places knowing that God has prepared for us something beautiful. I'm looking forward to seeing this unfold!


A taste of this harvest was also had in the month of February as I had the opportunity to lead a small missions trip to Rome. Myself and Eli (staff at the Ywam Base) lead together this trip with 5 students from the current DTS. I could say soooo much about this but I'll share a short testimony


While in Arco (Where the YWAM Base is) a student named Jesse met with a young Italian man from Bologna, while he was visiting his friend here in the valley. He shared that God wanted a personal relationship with him and that Jesus loves him! The young Italian man didn't believe it yet because he had some hurt from religion in the past and he also believed in evolution and that God didn't create him. The student simply told the young man "go into your room tonight when you get home and pray to God, He's waiting to answer you". Then they left, sowing a seed but not knowing what would come. Weeks later while we we're in Rome as a team evangelizing, Jesse was having a hard time sharing, being rejected a lot and starting to doubt the effectiveness of evangelism. Then out of no where, in Rome, a man starts calling his name! It was the guy he met in Arco some weeks back! He ran up to Jesse and said " I went to pray after talking to you, and I heard God speak to me! He told me that He created me and now I gave my life to Jesus!". WOW, hearing this boosted everyone's faith so much. We share the Gospel, a message that has completely changed our lives and God is faithful to do the rest. If Jesse didn't meet this guy in Rome he wouldn't have known that through his obedience to God someone gave their life to Jesus and was saved!

Worship in the streets of Rome with the team


March


Trailblazers DTS is in full swing now during the month of March. Dreaming big can be scary but I remind myself that when something is bigger than me it can only be done by God. So this month was very encouraging and building in my trust in God. Something fun about this month is that my good friends got married here! It was a blessing because lots of friends I've made in Ywam came and I was able to have some beautiful time of reconnection as we celebrated the bride and groom! Also during the wedding an unexpected surprise came about. While preparing for the upcoming DTS having a co-leader was a big prayer of mine. Someone to share responsibility with, and during the wedding I was able to share my heart and vision that God has been sharing and someone felt called to join the team and specifically co-lead the school with me! Praise God! The DTS team is growing and it's so encouraging to be able to share vision with a team and run this race together.



Thank you


Thanks for reading this update on what God is doing in Italy, I'm happy to continue to update everyone with all God is doing here in Italy and in myself as well.


Thank you to everyone who supports the vision God is giving me for missions and to be living out the Great Commission through being a part of Ywam and running these Discipleship Training Schools.


Thank you to all who support through prayers and finances, both are very needed🙂


Prayer Requests


  • open hearts in Italy for us to be able to share the life changing news of the Gospel

  • More Italians mobilized for missions and coming to the DTS

  • Wisdom and guidance for myself in leadership

  • Deeper intimacy with Jesus

  • For people to join in supporting this mission God has given me financially

Blessings, Lucas











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