Whats Going on in the Life of the Ward's
This Blog is my quarterly update's on what's happening in our life
If you have spent any time around Loren Cunningham the co-founder of YWAM, you will have heard him talk about vision and leadership. He says “that in leadership we often get thrown into the deep end of the pool standing on our tip toes with the water just below our nose and its in that position we usually learn how to thrive”.
Phillip and I have found ourselves exactly in that place.
At the start of the year we prayed into 2019, and there was such a sense of the significance of this year but also that it would be a lot hard work, and so far this has been very true.
I started the year in Kona with continuing to bring oversight and vision to the Crossroads DTS ( a DTS for this 30 and over). Just as we had hoped and believed for, the Lord is bringing those that are called to use their life experience, maturity, education and skill’s as well as having a heart for young people into the mission long term. We need more! Phillip has continued to bring leadership to campus development and the Construction Trade schools. I am continuing to be apart of campus leadership, running schools and doing all the other things I do and Phillip is carrying a lot of responsibility that has had some real challenges. It has been a very stretching year to say the least, but of course the Lord is faithful to us.
Now let’s get to some of the most exciting stuff. There are quite a few amazing things we could tell you about but I will share two of our favorites.The SEND was probably one of the most powerful days I have ever experienced. Phillip and I went to Orlando a week early to help bring leadership to a YWAM young leaders gathering with Darlene Cunningham. Feb 23rd was the day of the SEND, and sat back stage from the beginning to end.
I felt like the greatest impact for me was being apart of the story and knowing the history leading up to this day knowing the price that was paid and the obedience it took for some of my closest friends to lay down their lives to see something like this happen. And something did HAPPEN! This was not just an event or conference but I truly believe it was a day that partnered with heaven and shifted the future as masses gathered for a new era of missions and evangelism and and tens of thousands of people gave their “yes’ to adopt the mission fields of the earth, from universities to neighborhoods to the nations.
On that day of the Send over 40K people came to the stadium, and just under 60K watching on livestream. There where over 17K registered churches and over 100K unique IP addresses viewing it. Hundreds of Thousands of views on facebook. The day of the Send 18196 people committed to fasting, 531 gave their lives to Jesus! 2197 committed to College campuses, 2467 committed to High schools, 5064 committed to reach out to their friends, and 5423 committed to Go to the Nations!.
There where many who committed to adopt children and have now already started the process to do so. There where many reports of people who where physically healed. At one point Todd White called out that those who had cut themselves doing self harm that God was going to make their scars disappear, and people wrote in telling us that in that moment that is exactly what happened. The testimony’s and fruit continue to come in.
For Phillip and I and some of our closest friends, we had a very special miracle happen! Brian & Christy Brennt are dear friends that we have been running with for many years. They have been instrumental in a lot of the movements we are apart of. Christy has been a major prophetic voice into many movements and peoples lives. I don’t have adequate words to convey who they really are right now. Christy has had been very sick for over 30 years with Neurological Lyme’s Disease. She has been mostly confined to her bed for the last 10 years and all of the time I have known her. Many have prayed for her and we believed that there would be day that she would be healed. There where nights we thought we might loose her but her family had a promise from God. Christy was weak but took IV’s so she was able to sit back stage during the Send using all the strength she sound find to be there and was fading as the day went on. In the final few moments of the SEND, Phillip asked Bill Johnson from Bethel Church in Redding if he would pray for her.
With some of her family and friends gathered around back stage we laid hands on her and Bill begin to pray. You could feel it was a Holy moment and THEN CHRISTY WAS HEALED!!!! She said it felt like the pain and disease drained out of her body and in that moment she was completely healed! Its been months now and she is still healed! Her 4 kids who 3 are grown have never known their mom healed. Friends, Jesus is alive!!!!
I have to tell you about one more amazing story. Phillip along with our Campus Director Paul and Loren’s son David went to Nigeria, Africa. We have a YWAM base there led by an amazing Nigerian man, who for many years has been working with young men who where child soldiers and now militants. Many of these young men have murdered hundreds in the most horrific way and have given themselves over to the occult they possessed supernatural demonic power. When they come into contact with the love and power of Jesus they laid down their arms, and come out darkness into the saving transforming power of Jesus and then did a YWAM DTS. In our mission’s history this has been one of the most radical transformations of a people we have ever seen. David is a film maker and is working on a movie that will include the stories of some of these men. Philip went there on a discovery mission to meet with the leaders about planting a future construction trade school on the base. Part of these men’s transformation into wholeness is through training them in practical skills which gives them the dignity and ability to contribute in seeing their nation reformed. This is one of the most challenging regions in the world due to the complexity’s and turmoil of Nigeria so we are praying for wisdom and provision for timing and open doors. Let’s just say as a wife, I breathed a huge sigh of relief and thankfulness once he was out of the country, but of course the first thing he talks about is how soon he can go back.
We are continually traveling, ministering and speaking all over. There are so many amazing stories of what God is doing right now. We are always humbled and amazed
we get to be apart of it.
I know that often in our update letters we communicate how people who feel led can be apart of supporting us financially. If you're still reading this, I would like to share vulnerably with you to communicate our current and urgent need for a breakthrough in our finances. We are currently at the lowest financial place that we have been since we where married. This year we have gone on several ministry trips that we had to personally fund ourselves and it took all the savings we had to go to Nigeria, The Send, and Maylasia. On top of that we need $2500 more a month of support to cover the bills that we have to pay every month. We need about $4100 more a month to reach our our goal. We are believing the Lord for some big things for our future as we know this is the call on our lives as career missionaries and the thing we will be forever giving our lives to, there is no plan B. We have committed to go to Egypt in a few weeks with Darlene Cunningham and some other YWAM leaders, but we need $6000 by this next week to be able to purchase our tickets. We are not in fear, as we feel like our marriage and our lives are more aligned with God than they have ever been and we are in the will of God. As we have prayed and we felt like we where to make our need known and trust that the Lord will move on hearts and speak to those who are meant to be apart of our support team. We want to invite people who love and believe in us to join us in prayer for this breakthrough. With the many responsibilities we both carry and the challenges that come with some of those, we just believe that finances is not meant to be one of them.
If you do want to give towards this, first of all Thank you! Here is how you can:
The best way is through our website Forward Mission, where you can sign up as a monthly supporter or give a one time donation, and all giving is tax deductible. If you don't need or want a tax deduction then you give via PayPal or cash app $amylward
If you prefer to give through our YWAM account you can do that as well.
Thank you for all your love and support.
Amy & Phillip Ward
This title is of the message that I have been preaching this summer. Its a message that the Lord gave me a couple years ago. This summer it has become the primary message I have speaking on with a fresh authority.
Phillip and I feel like so much of what God currently is calling us and those around us to live in is a greater place of obedience and dependency on God that requires a greater courage that comes from only Him and knowing Him. Psalms 27:14 Wait for the Lord; Be strong and let your heart take courage; Yes, wait for the Lord.
I wanted to send out a short update on what is currently happening in our lives right now but t also to ask for your help in a few areas.
On a personal level Phillip and I are in the best place we have ever been in our own lives and in our marriage. We are both so thankful that God has blessed us with each other and called us both as a team into missions! Its been such a sweet season in the midst of the craziness of our leadership responsibilities and my travel schedule. It feels as if the Lord has poured out a richness of love and personal growth as we have said “yes” to Jesus with our obedience at a real cost to us. As alway’s, His ways our higher!
We are both living in the realms of “without God this is impossible to do”!
Phillip is leading the charge on the Kona campus as the Director of Campus Development. This September we are preparing for the largest quarter we have ever had. We need so many miracle’s to happen in the next few weeks so PLEASE be praying for that breakthrough. We need permits to go through and increased favor with the county of Hawaii. But our greatest need right now is more skilled builders to come and work. With all of this building we need an increase of finances to keep it going. I have never seen Phillip alive and over his head at the same time. Its great!
As you have seen in the news we have been dealing with an active Volcano on the Big Island. Our campus is far away from the danger of lava but the VOG really effects us. In the midst of building and preparing for the largest quarter yet, we have also agreed to take some evacuees who lost their home’s due to the Volcano and house them on the base for the summer.
I am on a wild travel schedule right now. Some of these ministry trips where planned a long time ago (my life has to be schedule out way in advance) and at the time we planned them we thought Phillip and I would be together on some of these. With what is currently happening on camp and Phillips leadership role, he really needs to be present every day, so he is presently not traveling. We prayed about it and we still felt like I was meant to go to the places I had committed go and minster at. I am currently in Norway for the third time this summer, where I am teaching at national YWAM gathering called "Go Fest" where I am speaking this week.
Some of you know we suddenly had to move out of the house we had been renting since moving to Kona, due to the owner selling it (which was never told to us when we rented it). When we where looking to rent a new place the volcano had not gone off yet so the rental housing market was insane. One house I applied for had 43 applicants. We only found one place we liked for a couple hundred dollars more then where currently paying, but the manager choose another couple. We continued to feel like it was the only place we wanted, well the other couple fell through and we got the house! Praise Jesus! Its much closer to campus, and its bigger and better. Very funky style, but we like it! We had to move our stuff into storage and then went on a trip, came back and moved in and then I took off for another trip. Thankfull for all the YWAM’ers that helped with the move. With no exaggeration, its been a bit crazy, but we are thankful!
I am apart of the leadership of the Kona Campus and with that role I also agreed to take on our Crossroads DTS. This is a DTS for people over 25. It usually tends to be people from the age range of 30-80. We are in a season of needing more experienced, skilled, mature people coming into missions. The Lord spoke to me about the urgency over this and so with that we are restructuring the Crossroads DTS and I am leading a school this fall and continuing to bring oversight for the next year and half or so. This is a huge undertaking and I really need a breakthrough in finding staff to build that team.
So as you can see there are some areas we really need breakthrough in and increased prayer. Spiritual warfare is real and we need more covering!
As I write all of this I also want to make our need made known. We have been continually working on raising our committed monthly financial support but still need to see a breakthrough in that. But even more that, right now we just need some extra finances to come in. Being a leader in YWAM it is important for me to go to some of our larger international gatherings. In a few weeks I will be going to Cambodia and then Thailand for some of these gatherings. This has ended up being quite expensive and I tried to wiggle my way out of going but the Lord has made it very clear I need to be there. This is costing us $3000 for me to do these two gatherings. We also have had some unexpected medical expenses come up and we will be having more. All of that, with the cost of moving into a new place etc we just really need to raise some finances to cover these bigger expenses that have come, along with still needing $2500 more a month.
So below are a few things we need your help with!
We need financial provision right now to cover current ministry expenses and medical bills. We also still need to raise our committed monthly support.
If you want to be apart of giving toward our current need or want to be a monthly supporter you can go to Forward Mission. All giving is tax deductible. If you don't need a tax deduction then you give via PayPal or cash app $amylward If you prefer to give through our YWAM account you can do that as well.
We Need Breakthrough
We need financial provision right now to cover current ministry expenses and medical bills. We also still need to raise our committed monthly support.
If you want to be apart of giving toward our current need or want to be a monthly supporter you can go to Forward Mission. All giving is tax deductible. If you don't need a tax deduction then you give via PayPal or cash app $amylward If you prefer to give through our YWAM account you can do that as well.
WE NEED CONSTRUCTION WORKERS
If you or anyone you know who has construction skills and would want to come donate their time and skill to help us build and prepare for this next quarter we are now in a crucial time and really need help! Anyone with these skills that wants to come volunteer this summer we will take care of your food and housing on campus. If your interested E-MAIL PHILLIPlWe will also be taking volunteer's after the summer as the building will continue on.
WE NEED TEACHERS
The Learning Center, which is our campus K-8th grade school is in desperate need of teachers for this coming school year. You don’t currently have to have a teaching degree although thats a bonus. If you or someone you know would want to come to Kona for this school year as a volunteer school teacher please E-MAIL ME We are currently need teachers for all grades and subjects. This can be a great opportunity for those that are good with children and have a desire and gift to teach in a multi culture christian missions school.
"Jesus your going to have to show up"....This was the silent prayer going up as there was no way to remove the distance between the driver’s side of the door and the passenger’s seat where Phillip was seated as a gunmen held us at gun point with the barrel directed at his head.
“No weapon that is formed against you will succeed” Isaiah 54:17
A few weeks ago Phillip and I where in Brazil speaking in one of our Fire & Fragrance DTS’s that we are running in partnership with Dunamis Movement. I was schedule to speak at 3 different church young adults movements in different cities on the weekend before and after the school. The Lord gave me a message that I really felt like was a word of the Lord for the young adults of the nation and the age group of who I would be speaking to. That message was about “reformation” and taking personal responsibility for our calling’s, words from God and seeing the nation changed. The first night I preached it, I felt a little on my left foot, but the Lord really showed up and I knew it was much more significant then I had realized. There seemed to be more spiritual warfare for me in Brazil from when I was the in the summer. The following weekend after we spoke in the DTS on the farm, I was scheduled to preach in two more young adult movements. I felt like the Lord asked me to speak the same message again.
We where leaded out to the next town on that Friday, and when I woke up I told Phillip that I felt an unusual amount of spiritual warfare. We drove a few hours away to the city I was speaking in. We had young woman who was driving us around and was was translator for me. That night before I spoke we met with the pastors of the church for dinner and then I asked to get some coffee. There was a coffee shop a block away from the church, but we had trouble finding parking and ending up parking at grocery store that had closed for the evening. We walked across the street for coffee. While we where there we where talking about the crime in Brazil. They where telling us stories about people being kidnapped, mugged and shot etc, but the pastor said that the city we where presently in was voted the safest city in Brazil and that he had lived there for ten years and had never had any problems. As we walked back to our parked cars we where joking around a little about the subject. We where going to drive one block and park at the church as I was speaking in 20 min. In our car was the woman driving us, Phillip in the passenger seat, the pastor’s wife and myself in the back seat. In the other car was the pastor and his two young sons. As we were backing out to leave I hear Phillip say “gun, gun, gun” and I look up to see a man standing in front of the car with a pistol pointing strait at us and blocking us from driving forward. The gunman was suddenly at the drivers window telling her to roll down her window as he pointed the gun at her. Of course he was speaking in Portuguese so Phillip and I didn’t know what he was saying at the time, and our minds are racing as the moment is more surreal then you can imagine. The gunman is now pointing it strait at Phillips head. Phillip at that time is thinking that there is absolutely nothing he can do from the passengers seat where is is, so he stays very calm. I am in the back trying to discreetly hide my passport in the seat pocket. When Phillip realized there was nothing that could be done he just silently prayed “Jesus your going to have to show up”. The man then looked at me and then looked at Phillip strait in the eyes and lowered his gun and started yelling and cursing for us to leave, and leave we did!
The pastor had gotten away in the other car with his children and called the police. We hurriedly drove to the church and with our mind and heart are racing! (though Phillip still seemed calm) I had to get up in preach 20 min after it happened. I knew that what I was preaching that night was a word from the Lord and I was fired up and under the fear of the Lord at the same time!
As we processed it with our friend and translator and other leaders in the area we came to full conclusion that the gunman had to have seen something that changed his mind. We don’t know what he saw but we know that the Lord was with us in that car and made Himself known in someway that changed that mans mind. Praise Jesus!
We where overwhelmed by the faithfulness of God and aware of the real spiritual warfare that was coming against us for more then just one reason. But again, Jesus wins!
Let me tell you a little of what is going on with us!
When we came to Kona one of the main goals was for Phillip to start a trade school in the University of the Nations. We launched that in Sept 17, as an elective track for our entry level DTS students. We are now running it for the third quarter. The students then go on outreach and use those skills in the nations. We just heard that in the last couple weeks one of our Trades and Farm track student teams currently in the Himalayas have built toilets, a washing station, put a roof on a church in the slums and have helped build a water catchment system! That's just one team in one location, all this while they seem people get saved and healed.
The Trades Track is now turning in to a full 3 year degree program. Once you have complicated your DTS you can then go right into the second year program and then into there third year apprenticeship coming out with a NCCR national recognized certification of a Journeyman with a real resume. Its amazing!
While developing the Trade school with his team, Phillip is also overseeing all of Campus Development and Operations. He has never been more busy, over his head, thrivings and loving life like he is right now! Pretty much BOSS status!
I continue to bring leadership to the campus in serving on the Core Leadership Team, as well as continuing to be on the leadership teams of Fire & Fragrance and Circuit Riders. I am traveling and speaking on different YWAM bases, our new pioneering YWAM plants, and a few other ministries. Since my last newsletter I have traveled teaching and preaching in Washington DC, Orlando several times, Alaska twice, Oregon, LA a few times, Nepal, Dubai, Indonesia, and Brazil. Phillip got to go on some of those trips as well, and he being's such a strategic piece each time. Its been amazing to see how God has brought us together in marriage to be a team in ministry. We would have never known how strategic and powerful it would be. We are so thankful we are in a season of getting to do more together.
This last fall in Kona we had the largest quarter in YWAM's history and the Fire & Fragrance DTS had the largest school ever ran that we know of with 300+ students. That school went on 12 weeks of outreach all over the world and they saw 40,700+ confirmed salvations, 3,750+ healings, 114,300+ heard the gospel preached, and over 2000 hours of intercession! We have never been in days like this before. We are in a season of great growth and multiplication. We are projected to far exceed those student numbers this coming Fall Quarter. We currently don’t have enough beds for the amount of students coming. Phillip is walking in a real level of supernatural faith and capacity increase to see dorm buildings built, 30,000 square feet of classroom space built by this fall, and a whole lot more to prepare for the growth. The level of responsibility and leadership is beyond anything he has ever known, and its all directly tied to a real missions movement. Its been such a honor and privilege to walk more closely with the YWAM founder's, Loren and Darlene Cunningham. Our desire is that they would see a lot more of the vision completed in their life time!
There is so much I want to tell you about, and at the bottom of this letter is a couple more wild things that we we are taking on, so check it out.
To be able to write you these stories and updates on what we are apart of leading is humbling and we are so honored we get to be apart of it.
Jesus You Are Going to Have to Show Up Again!
At the beginning of this letter I told you about some of the spiritual warfare has been going on. Sometimes it shows up in the form of a real weapon and other times in comes at us in other ways but it always feels personal. The enemy knows he can't stop us from obedient to Jesus but he sure as heck tries to slow us down. As you can read from this letter we have so much going right now and real assignment from the Lord but honestly one of the most challenging parts of being in missions is having to raise finances. Right now Phillip and I are in a place again that Jesus has to show up with provision for us to continue on the way we are. We are in a immediate need of increasing our committed monthly support by $3500-$4000 more a month. While we were in Brazil we where notified that the house we rent was sold and we now have to find a new place to live in the next two weeks. If you would be praying for us for breakthrough in our housing and finances we would really appreciate it! If you would like to apart of that financial breakthrough and become a monthly financial supporter then that would be a huge blessing to us!
Thank you for taking the time to read our updates. We are so blessed by our family and community across the globe.
Love and Blessings,
Amy & Phillip Ward
One of the other big things that I am taking on in this season is the DTS for the older generations that is ran here in Kona. I know, it really seems like a left field move for me, but its very much the Lord.
In serving on the leadership team of the campus there are always things that are coming up that we have to take on and bring leadership to. There are some amazing shifts and changes in what the Lord is speaking to us a Campus Leadership Team of where we are to heading and strategy on how to get there. One of the things that has come up a lot is what the Lord wants to do with the older generation that is looking for the second vision for their life. We have had an amazing Crossroads DTS’s ran here in Kona for many many years from a vision the Lord gave Loren and Darlene many years ago.
A few years ago here in Kona we developed different skill based tracks that are electives within the DTS program. Some of the DTS’s started incorporating these into their schools. We now have tracks in Business, Music, Media, Fitness/Sports, Compassion/Mercy, Dance, Construction Trades, and Natural Farming. There will be more to come. The Crossroads DTS is designed for those over 30 and many of the students are coming with real experience and backgrounds in different spheres and we want them to be able to use those skills in missions. We are in a time of great increase of young people coming into missions. With that there is a real need for those over 30 with that real life experience and skills, that are on fire for Jesus, and passionate about young people and missions. We want them to come and be encountered by God and given a fresh vision and assignment for their lives and future. We feel like incorporating these tracks within the Crossroads DTS and having them work alongside younger people in these tracks is going to further the hearts of the generations turning toward one another and impart the vision and value of being YOUTH with a Mission.
As the leadership felt like God was speaking to us about this older age group and shifting somethings with the Crossroads the Lord really started to speak to me about it. Then one night the Lord woke me up in the middle of the night and He said to me that with the increase of the wave of young people that is coming that it was urgent for a great focus on Crossroads to happen and some shifts made. I found myself unexpectedly burdened by the heart of the Lord for this. We know that someone from the leadership team needed to take this on and with the prompting of the Lord I volunteered. I shocked myself!
What does this mean? Well it means I will be leading the fall Sept Crossroads DTS this year! I will have a great team to help lead a lot of the day to day but I will be overseeing the development and vision of it all. It also means I will be bringing leadership to the big picture of Crossroads as a whole in the development and vision for all the DTS’s that are run as a Crossroads DTS. Its a huge undertaking for me and not something I saw coming, but the Lord is writing this story and as I always preach sometimes when you ask God what’s on His heart He will invite you into it, and apparently Crossroads is on His heart.
There will be a lot more information to come as things unfold in the coming months. Pray for me to have a capacity increase, wisdom, and that God would send the right staff.
The new info is not up yet but you can always go to www.uofnkona.edu for more information and to apply for any DTS we run.
Its been 3 months since we have been living in Kona and I am finally getting a chance to send out a update letter. There is so much that has already happened.
Can I say, I really don’t like moving. I love being planted. When I look throughout my life I feel like every time the Lord spoke to move it was pretty dramatic. It has always been for strategic, fruit bearing and life changing reasons and my life was forever changed. But this time was different in many ways but so clear, and there was a sweetness to it even though I had no desire to live in Hawaii again. When Loren and Darlene Cunningham asked us to pray about moving their, we took it to a couple people and to the Lord and He simply said “yes”. Then we said “yes” but from that very first “yes” we know had a knowing that we where both as individuals and as a couple about to step into the greatest season in our lives thus far. That has already proven to be so true!
Within a couple of weeks of being there, Loren asked Phillip to step into leading Base Development as well as starting and developing a Trade School, that he came to Kona to do. Our Campus is 40 developed aches with 62 more that is not yet developed. We believe this is aa long term call and assignment to Kona. The last few months the priority for Phillip been getting a new dormitory building ready for the largest quarter that YWAM has have ever had with over 900 students that have just arrived. Phillip has stepped into such favor, leadership and he is in his element even under the pressure and magnitude of it all. It’s amazing seeing him come alive in every way and leading on the level that he is. On arrive I was also asked to come on the campus leadership team. Phillip and I have been living in such a Fear of the Lord as we have come to realize the magnitude of what God is doing right now and the urgency of the hour. Daily we stand in the awe of what God and are amazed by what He is doing and continually humbled that we get to be apart of serving and leading what we are. It has been such an honor to work along side Loren and Darlene Cunningham. We have been such students, soaking up all the wisdom both caught and taught be these hero’s and Friends of God.
Prior to the move Phillip and I traveled doing some fund raising events to raise committed monthly financial support . Knowing the Lord was calling both Phillip and I to be in full time missions and we had so much faith for a financial breakthrough, so much so that we where dumb founded when that did not happen. When things first started “not happening” I was freaking out, but then it got to the point that it was to obvious this was the opposition of the enemy that I went from crying to looking and Phillip and laughing as you just can’t make this stuff up. We were so undone by our friends and family’s love and willingness to host the events and throw down for us even when things did not turn out as expected. God in His wild ways of faithfulness provided the finances we needed for our shipping container and vehicles to Kona and enough to make it for the next season. He is always faithful. We are trusting that we will see the breakthrough in the coming months.
While Phillip and the boys packed up the rest of house in California, I went to Brazil to partner with Dunamis Movement to launch our Circuit Rider 21 Project school there. I was so undone by the hunger of the young people and my heart was gripped. Over 1200 students applied to come but there was only room for 300 in this first school. Because of our relationship and partnership with Dunamis and all God did during that time we are now launching a Fire & Fragrance DTS in February there. The night I said goodbye to the school they all prayed for me calling me “mamma”, and to me that is on of the greatest thing I could be called. Phillip and I will be going to spend a couple weeks there launching the DTS in February.
We landed in Kona July 11th and the following day we started the largest 21 project we have run yet here in Kona. Needless to say we hit the ground running!
I think everyone who knows me, knows that living in a hot climate is the last thing I would want to do. Landing in Kona in July without AC was not a great way for me to start out. Being vulnerable here, but that first week I had a few tearful breakdowns. Phillip loves living in Hawaiibut he was patient and encouraging with me.
The 21 Project was the most incredible one we have done yet. University students from all over the nations coming and being trained and equipped, collaborating on media and music projects as well as other things. We where once again stunned by all the Lord was doing.
We rented a house sight unseen as housing can be very challenging to find especially when you don’t have a normal proof of income, so we took the first house that would rent to us. It became available the end of July and we got a crew to come help us unload the container and move in. With so much going on we did not get to move in as quickly as I would have wanted but over time we got settled. The house is further from campus then we want to be, but it meets our needs for now and I am so thankful. At night if you keep the doors open and the fans blowing the heat is not to bad as we are a big higher in elevation then the campus…. from 11 in the morning to dusk you sweat or sit in front of fan. Praying one day to live in a place with high elevation or AC…..yes Lord! I am very thankful to have a home!
Phillip finally got to join me in one of my, and now his favorite places on the earth, New Zealand! We spent two weeks there teaching both on the North and South Islands. Being from Alaska it really means something when you say this is one the most beautiful places on earth. Not only does God show off with the beauty of the land but He does as well in the people. It was fun getting to have Phillip and I do some co-teaching. We are growing as a team more and more as we finally get to run together in ministry.
When we made the move to Kona both boys decided to move back to Alaska to live with their mom. Elijah is working for his uncle and we got Bob graduated from high school and he is turning 18 this month. So this has been the first time in our marriage that Phillip and I have lived alone. Life has been full on and we have been so busy with our different roles on base, but we have been able to find time together and work though the more challenging things of the past season and work on things for heading into the new while enjoying just being together.
To top off all the wildness, we got audited by the IRS. This is like one of my nightmares, and it happened. I got the notice a few weeks before we moved to Kona. I probably spent 80+ hours getting prepared for that. It was from 2015, our first year of marriage when Phillip had two business that year one he closed out in AK and one he started in CA and then I am a self employed missionary so there was a lot to it all. I had the audit a week and a half ago and it went pretty well not having to owe to much money, but we now have to be audited again for the following year. Not because I did something really wrong but more because of how crazy life looked on paper, but when they find little mistakes they make you show the following year to. Ugh! There was some tears but overcoming is always the story. Thankful it went as well as it did, sure will be relieved to get it all behind me.
The end of September I took off for Norway and Germany and Phillip started his DTS… yes, his DTS. No matter what role you have or background, everyone comes through the same gate in YWAM and that is a Discipleship Training School and he had not done one yet. He will be both a student and staff, in that he will be running a trade track within our largest Fire & Fragrance DTS ever with 300 students (I think the biggest DTS in YWAM’s history). We need about $3200 to cover the cost of this. Another fun thing is my mom is in Kona this fall doing a DTS as well.
The rest of this year is going to be pretty crazy with my travel schedule. Every place I am going is strategic and important and what we feel God is saying for me to do, but its sure not easy being away from each other so much, and its pretty exhausting for me. The Lord gives us grace.
I just got back to Kona and will turn around on Friday to fly to Washington DC for “Rise UP” a massive gathering of woman on the National Mall Oct 9th with Lou Engle and “Awaken the Dawn” the 3 days leading up to it. From there I go to LA to teach in our Circuit Rider DTS, and then to Wasilla, AK to do a Women’s gathering and speak at Northgate Church. In Oct and Nov I will also be in Albany Oregon with Jesus Pursuit Church, YWAM Orlando, and LA again. Then in Dec I will be away for over two weeks going overseas to teach in a Himalayan and a Middle Eastern DTS. Back just in time to grab Phillip and head to Wasilla, AK to have Christmas with the kids and Ward side of the family.
With the amount of “busy” I have had I have not gotten an update out in awhile, there is so much in my heart I want to tell you all. We are so filled with faith and are on the edge of our seat in joyful expectation every day and undone by how much simple obedience truly does change history.
Thank you all so much for your love and support we really feel it!
We have a few bigger and more urgent needs right now, and that is to raise our committed monthly support, finances for Phillips DTS, and to the cost of plane tickets for the trip I am going in December to the Himalayas and Middle East as well astickets for Phillip's outreach beginning of this next year to a number of international locations.
Well this is not your normal update blog….. this is a big announcement! The Wards are moving to Kona!!!!
Here is the story…… In December there was a lot of very challenging thing’s going on in our life. In the area’s of ministry for me things where good, but life outside of that was super challenging. Phillip was working a lot of hours for Harley Davidson for very little pay. I was still traveling and ministering but its hard to do life and marriage this way. We felt like we were doing our best to obedient to the Lord in it all. Financially we where not making it, a crisis was going on with one of the kids, Phillip was working all the time, all of that puts stress on the marriage. It came to a point t that we knew we could not keep going like that that the Lord wanted to disrupt something.
I was out with one of my close friends sharing my heart in vulnerable way and in that moment I had a encounter with the Lord. The gift of faith hit me and I heard the Lord ask me if I would take another risk and give Phillip a 3 month window to quit his job and fully focus on alignment in all areas of life and to see things “turn” so that we could step into what the Lord had next for us. I said “yes” but then I thought of how much money would would need to live for 3 months without Phillip working and I knew the number. I then heard the Lord say that I would have it 2 days and He showed my my step of faith. I grabbed my friend’s hand and I said “agree with me I am going to get this amount of money in two days and Phillip is going to quit his job and we are going to see a breakthrough”. Its an amazing story but Phillip came home from work and I told him what happened and I spoke into his life and he was hit by the Lord with faith and said “yes” to it all. The middle of the second day he put in his resignation at work and I flew to speak somewhere. When I landed at my destination on the end of the second day all the money we needed was committed. We were undone and knew God was in this and life was going to change.
The next month and a half was all about alignment and the Lord did such a deep and real work in our lives and marriage. Phillip was stepping into a new place in the Lord that he had never been, and it was amazing. It was a time of healing and restoration and some of that was challenging to work through but the Lord is good. Phillip felt that we where not to ask the Lord what was next until the middle of February. That was hard for me as I like a plan.
The end of January we got to go on our first international ministry trip together to Thailand for our first Fire & Fragrance annual missions community gathering. Where all the mission communities that we have sent out of Kona come together over a few days to connect, cast vision, worship and be a family. It was such an incredible time. The stories and fruit from these long term communities was AMAZING. They came from Oman, Nepal, Berlin, Turkey, India, Lao and other Middle Easter places. During this time I saw Phillip come even more alive as he stepped into new places of influence and ministry. It was the first time we both fully voiced to each other that our greatest desire for this next season would be that we would both be in full-time ministry together. We did not see how that could happen with our circumstance’s but it was one of the main reason we felt God brought us together in marriage. With this new alignment in our lives and marriage we saw the vision and purpose of why the Lord brought us together.
The following week I went to teach two weeks in Kona and Phillip came and joined me for the second week which was also the middle of February. We had felt like the Lord was going to speak to us while we were there but we had no idea what He would say. Nothing brings me more peace then hearing God’s voice and having a plan! We really went with open hands and hearts. It was just a good time for Phillip to get to connect with the Kona family and even minister alongside each other… so much life for us!
In these last few years the Lord has really given me a gift and blessing with a relationship with Darlene Cunningham (co-founder of YWAM). Often times when I am in Kona we get a little time together which is so life giving for me. On the trip to Kona we were going to connect and I asked to bring Phillip. From the start of our marriage the Cunningham’s have gone above and beyond to welcome Phillip and the kids into the mission. Phillip and I went and had lunch with her one day. Now prior to this Phillip had also said he would love to move to Kona and I was always saying “no way”! I am an Alaskan fair skinned red head that does to like to live in the heat and humidity. Kona is on island in the middle of the pacific ocean and …. I lived there for 5 years and it would fell like going backward instead of forward to me. I talked with Andy Byrd about it one day and I told Phillip the same thing, the the only way I would consider moving back to Kona would be if I had an encounter with God or the Cunningham’s asked us to. Now we have ing lunch with Dar and we tell her about our season and what God was doing. She was so excited and started just speaking into us about Phillip and I being together and whatever was to come in this next season that it should be together. Then she says “what about Kona?”. That led to her saying getting excited and sharing more on why Kona could be the next thing for us, but I was thinking “she is not saying this!”, as I kept a poker face. She goes on to say we need to talk to Loren because of the timing and some new things possibly developing that could involve Phillip. It was such a wild lunch for us! We go strait to from there to meet up with a friend who we had asked pray for us, and we did not give her details of what was going. As we sit down with her 15 min after being with Dar, she says she was praying for us and the first thing she heard was “Kona”. She starts talking about how the Lord spoke to her about Phillip and I being together in this next season and goes on about him. Over the next couple days it became more and more clear that the Lord was possible speaking through all of this to move back to Kona. We had some time with Andy & Holly Byrd and they were stunned and excited. Clarity started to come to Andy and I as to “Why” we would be going to Kona to run tougher again in pioneering and foundation laying. To preparing for the wave of missionaries being sent out and to establish these key missional communities and hubs in the nations. Even though I was not thrilled about the location of Kona, at the end of the day I just want to obey the Lord, and be in the will of God. I want to have a healthy family and marriage and to do life and ministry with Philip. The night before we left we went out with Loren. It stared out with Loren walking up to us saying “I hear your in transition” and then he literally beings to sing to us “come home, come home”! This night will be forever etched in my memory as we where chill’n at Burger King late at night, the only ones in the place eating ice cream and talking about discipling entire nations. He shares with us this whole idea around a Trade School in Kona training missionaries in trades and using it to disciple nations. Its Loren so it was a huge vision and there was other parts to it that are still in such a developmental stage I can’t get into it all yet. It was like in one moment Phillips entire life and background right down to the exact language he uses all made sense and fit. We where really quite stunned. We went back to California and had time with Brian & Christy Brennt who we walk with, and they felt the Lord on it as well. Phillip and I went and prayed together again as we needed to hear the Lord clearly for ourselves and we asked the Lord the question “are you leading us to move to Kona?” and we both heard “yes”. A couple days later we told Loren and Dar that we where coming!
Well as you might imagine there was so much to set into motion and figure out. We already where planning on being in Kona in July for our annual 21 Project School that we are running there this year . Our lease is up in August so it does not make sense to come back. So we reserved a shipping container to ship our stuff and our car. Now we are going full force in support raising as Phillip and I will both be full-time missions and we need to raise the finances for out monthly support and for the move there. There is still a lot of unknowns like where we will live and how all of this is going to work exactly but we are all in and moving forward in faith. Our youngest Bob will be going with us as he still lives at home and possibly the other two kids will join us as well.
I still have some ministry travel with speaking in schools in these next few months. The rest of the time will be traveling for fund raising, getting things ready to move, Phillip working on a few projects and Bob finishing up school. Since all this happened its been full on for us and I don’t see any slowing down for a long time.
With Phillip having not done a DTS yet, he will do one in the Sept quarter. I will still be traveling and speaking some and being on staff in Kona. I don’t know all that is to come but I do know that God is good, He is faithful and we are saying “yes”.
We are launching a new website with a video of us taking about all of this. A video of the Cunningham’s, Andy Byrd and other friends talking about this and all the information on how to be involved. Go check it out www.phillipandamy.com
Thank you for all your love and support we are excited about what is next.
We will be doing fund raising events in: Let me know if you want more info on any of these events.
Petersburg, Alaska April 20-21
Costa Mesa, CA April 29th
Wasilla, Alaska May 21
Chicago, IL May 26-28
Nashville, TN June 2-4
We got a house and are officially moving!
In my early years of ministry I was freaking out about something that was a going (I don’t even remember what it was) and my spiritual father said something to me….”Its one thing to trust God enough to get in a wheel barrel and let Him push you over a tightrope over the Niagara Falls, its another thing to enjoy the ride” You know that has always stuck with me. I can say I have always gotten into that wheel barrel but sometimes I have failed and enjoying the ride.
For me right now it feels like I am in that wheel barrel again and about half away across the tightrope and my flesh wants to close my eyes, white knuckle it until I am on the other side but my spirit cries out to open my eyes and see the beauty and faithfulness of God around me.
I have always raised my own financial support in ministry and I worked jobs from time to time in my early years ( I have a very wide and diverse resume). You don’t grow up like I did not and understand hard work and perseverance. The Lord has been faithful to me all these years and continues to be. A year and a half ago when I got married my entire life changed and the amount of finances I needed to believe God for quadrupled overnight. I learned quickly that with a wild husband and kids, there comes a lot of unexpected bills no matter how good you budget.
Phillip left his entire life in Alaska to come and marry me and start a new life. Breaking into the California market and job’s has been a steep learning curve and challenging in so many ways. So far we have made it through and the Lord has been faithful to us providing in miraculous ways to keep us going. We have hope for the future. I would love to send a letter one day letting you all know what Phillip’s vision is with True North Sons and the inner cities of LA and America and the transformation of young men and woman. Its quite amazing and still in its formation.
After living in Pasadena these last few years and in the first part of our marriage we have felt from the Lord and have been asked to move to Huntington Beach. After much prayer, counsel and deliberation we felt it was the right thing for our family and ministry. One main reason is all of our Circuit Rider/ YWAM community lives there as well as other friends in the area and its our national office for Circuit Riders. This first year and half of family has had some great challenges but so worth it! There have been many days that I have wondered if we should just pack it up and go somewhere cheaper to live and easier for Phillip to work and no matter how challenging things get we come back to the word of the Lord to be here in California. We know its what God has for us and the fruit that is coming from what we are apart of and leading is only increasing. I could give you a long list of what I I do here and all over the world but if you know me then I think you know. Phillip is hard working and has such a heart for city transformation and its no longer “his and her thing” but all that we do is “our calling”. We really need a financial breakthrough in this season of our life! As much as I have considered stopping what I do and doing something else we KNOW California is where we are meant to be. So I am writing to ask you to pray and consider partnering financially into Phillip and I and all that we do. Not just into what we do but into who we are. In order to really make it in this next season of life I greatly need to increase my monthly missions support, and that along with what Phillip is able to bring in I believe we will make it and I can start to put my thoughts, prayers and efforts into places they really belong. Support raising is a humbling thing and we pray there is a day we have breakthrough in other areas of finances that we won’t need as much support as we do now. Would you consider partnering with us financially on a monthly basis so we can make this move and continue on in all that we have said “yes” to. On top of our monthly needs we have a lot of upfront cost of moving and we need to buy some furniture, appliances in the place we rent.
If you would like to know anymore details I would love to share.
All financial support is tax deductible through YWAM Kona. You can sign up to give monthly or one time here. click below
Or you can give on my personal paypal
If you have questions about other options please just e-mail
Thank you for reading this and praying. We are so thankful for all of you!
Amy & Phillip Ward
Simple Obedience Changes History
Standing on the stage looking out at thousands and thousands of people worshiping and loving Jesus in a stadium in Los Angeles was one of the most humbling and amazing moments I have had.
By the grace of God I have spent the majority of my life giving my “yes” to Jesus to see a generation on the earth radically in love with Jesus. There are these moments along the journey where you see the fruit of your “yes” and in those moments everything dulls in comparison and all the sacrifice and all the current screaming circumstance fade and in that moment your undone and humbled. Jesus is worth it all!
Most of this last season was leading up to Azusa Now that was held in the LA Coliseum on April 9th. What a historic day to be apart of! The ten days leading up to Azusa Now the Circuit Riders put together tent and field gathering all across LA with thousands of people from Bethel School of Supernatural Ministry, YWAM, and many other ministries and places doing outreaches across the city with “Flood LA”. Los Angeles was flooded with the Love of Jesus with so many surrendering their life to Him with all types of miracles and healing’s happening! The Kingdom of Heaven is at hand!!!!
During Azusa Now Over 65,000 people attended. #AzusaNow was the #1 tweet in the world, #3 #4 on Facebook, #2 on Instagram and top 5 most impacting hashtags on April 9th. We had over 500,000 views on YouTube. 290K viewed on our AzusaNow2016.com livestream. Hundreds of millions of people around the world, as it was broadcast entirely by GodTV, and additional live coverage by TBN, CBN, Juce TV, Daystar and newly launched Holy Spirit Network.In addition, the entire day was translated in English, Spanish, Portuguese, Korean, and Chinese. As well, in Arabic and broadcast to millions of homes in the Middle East via The Way TV network.
The Ward family adventures by Amy Ward