I was recently encouraged and blessed by this testimony from one of my current students who will graduate this December. I hope you are too! – Keith
History: I grew up in a wonderful Christian home. I was loved and taught God’s Word from an early age. I put my faith in Christ as my substitute sacrifice when I was very young. At thirteen I more fully began to understand what it meant to have a personal relationship with the Lord when I started praying because of an illness. Then our family moved from Brazil to Canada, when I was in High school, and those years were confusing as I was caught in between two worlds. I knew the love of God and was growing in my understanding of Him but was also enticed by the fun of the world and pursing my own life. The next few years of high school and college were similar I was growing in academics, work experience, and even in volunteering at the church but I struggled with being satisfied with the Lord. However, the Lord’s grace was always constant and He gave me many opportunities in high school and college to share the good news of Christ to unbelieving friends. I experienced the joy of partnering with God early on and I knew I wanted to be a part of what God was doing.
NTBI Experience: I have been a student at NTBI for three semesters in preparation for missions. From day one, as a student, I saw that the teachers, deans, and staff at school had a special relationship with God that was full of joy and satisfaction. I knew I lacked what I was seeing before me so I devoted myself to learning in classes and in any discipleship relationship available to me. The teachers poured their lives into teaching the Bible clearly and the deans poured their lives into seeing these truths applied to my heart and my day-to-day thinking. Keith was my dean and from early on he was an amazing mentor and trainer. He spent time showing me he cared by helping me with computer problems and playing sports together, but he was also able to talk through life and how it related to my walk with God. I learned that how I relate to God on a day-to-day basis directly affects all my other relationships. I learned that I had a performance mindset rather than a grace perspective in my walk with the Lord. Many of my talks with Keith were very difficult because I was hearing truth, but also very enlightening because I was receiving wise counsel. I count Keith as one of the most positive spiritual mentors I have ever had and a good friend.
Future Plans: I plan to continue on with New Tribes Mission’s training in a couple years with the hopes of being a church planter among an unreached people group. It is humbling that the Lord has given me current opportunities for ministry in the U.S. and Canada, but I recognize that cross-cultural ministry requires further missionary training. Me and my soon to be wife, Kimberly, are trusting the Lord for finances to attend NTM’s missionary training in Durham, Canada. During the training we hope to identify a region or country for long-term ministry.
In Christ, Jeremy Wardlaw