It may be of interest to our readers to see how the ‘original’ 21 Foundational Values of YWAM stack up against the ‘newer’ 17 Values of YWAM. * We have deliberately left out the word ‘foundational’ as this would be mis-leading, would it not?
Having thrown out all of my ‘YWAM memorabillia’, I was not sure if I would be able to track down a copy of the original 21 Values, but to my pleasant surprise ‘google’ located a YWAM Base that still uses the original 21 Foundational Values. If you are looking for a base to go serve at, this would be the base to go to. Their link is at the bottom of this article.
We propose to cut & paste the two versions so that one can appreciate the similarities and the subtle changes at a glance. Trust you will find this excercise an interesting read.
FIRST – The ‘newer’ 17 Values of Youth With A Mission (YWAM)
Please note: The 21 Foundational Values (the original ones) are ‘inserted’ between the New Values
(This has been copied from the YWAM International Website)
Youth With A Mission (YWAM) affirms the Bible as the authoritative word of God and, with the Holy Spirit’s inspiration, the absolute reference point for every aspect of life and ministry. Based upon God’s word, who He is, and His initiative of salvation, the following responses are strongly emphasized in YWAM:
Worship: We are called to praise and worship God alone
Holiness: We are called to lead holy and righteous lives that exemplify the nature and character of God
Witness: We are called to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with those who do not know Him
Prayer: We are called to engage in intercessory prayer for the people and causes on God’s heart, including standing against evil in every form
Fellowship: We are called to commit to the Church in both its local nurturing expression and its mobile multiplying expression
The Foundational Values of Youth With A Mission are the expression of our basic beliefs coupled with specific directives given by God since YWAM’s beginning in 1960. They are recorded here in order to pass on to successive generations that which God has emphasized to us. These shared beliefs and values are the guiding principles for both the past and future growth of our mission. Some are common to all Christians everywhere; others are distinctive to Youth With A Mission. The combination of these beliefs and values make up the unique family characteristics of YWAM–our “DNA.” They are values we hold in high regard which determine who we are, how we live and how we make decisions.
Since the beginning of Youth With A Mission (YWAM) in 1960, God has emphasized certain Biblical values which serve as spiritual foundations for the mission. The combined strength of these Biblical values has strongly influenced the nature and character of YWAM around the world. These shared values are the guiding principles for both the past and future growth of our mission. They are beliefs we hold in high regard which determine how we live and make decisions. God’s Word is the final authority for conduct and faith in Youth With A Mission. Our foundational values are not a list of rules to be adhered to; they were not written down until YWAM was 25 years old. Rather, these values are recorded here in an attempt to pass on to successive generations that which God has emphasized to us as a mission.
The following list has been reviewed by the YWAM International Executive Committee and approved by the International Council.
(The Revised 17)
1. KNOW GOD
YWAM is committed to know God, His nature, His character and His ways. We seek to reflect who He is in every aspect of our lives and ministry. The automatic overflow of knowing and enjoying fellowship with God is a desire to share Him with others.
-YWAM is committed to know God, His character and His ways. We affirm the vital importance of hearing God’s voice, seeking His counsel and obeying His instructions. (Numbers 23:19-20; Deuteronomy 32:3-4; John 5:30; 10:1-4; 16:13; Isaiah 6:8; Acts 16:6-10)
2. MAKE GOD KNOWN
YWAM is called to make God known throughout the whole world, and into every arena of society through evangelism, training and mercy ministries. We believe that salvation of souls should result in transformation of societies, thus obeying Jesus’ command to make disciples of all nations.
-YWAM is called to make God known, through Evangelism, Training and Mercy Ministries. All our activities should contribute toward the goal of discipling nations. (Acts 13:2-3; Genesis 12:1-3; Matthew 28:19-20; Mark 16:15; Acts 1:8; Romans 10:9-18; 15:18-21)
3. HEAR GOD’S VOICE
YWAM is committed to creating with God through listening to Him, praying His prayers and obeying His commands in matters great and small. We are dependent upon hearing His voice as individuals, together in team contexts and in larger corporate gatherings. This is an integral part of our process for decision making.
- Nothing similar from the original list.
4. PRACTICE WORSHIP AND INTERCESSORY PRAYER
YWAM is dedicated to worship Jesus and engage in intercessory prayer as integral aspects of daily life. We also recognize the intent of Satan to destroy the work of God and we call upon God’s power and the Holy Spirit to overcome his strategies in the lives of individuals and in the affairs of nations.
-YWAM is called to praise and worship of the Lamb of God, intercessory prayer and spiritual warfare. We endeavor to resist the devil by moving in the opposite spirit, which is the Spirit of Christ. In all things, we desire to keep Jesus central to our lives and ministry. (Ephesians 5:19-20; 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18; Psalm 32:6; 100; 150; John 17:15-21; Mark 11:24; Acts 1:14; Colossians 4:2-3; 1 Timothy 2:1, Ephesians 6:10-18; 2 Corinthians 10:3-6; James 4:7, Matthew 12:23-29)
5. BE VISIONARY
YWAM is called to be visionary, continually receiving, nurturing and releasing fresh vision from God. We support the pioneering of new ministries and methods, always willing to be radical in order to be relevant to every generation, people group, and sphere of society. We believe that the apostolic call of YWAM requires the integration of spiritual eldership, freedom in the Spirit and relationship, centered on the Word of God.
-YWAM is visionary, doing new things in new ways where new initiatives are required to accomplish the Great Commission. (Isaiah 42:8-9; John 4:35; Matthew 10:1-10; Hebrews 11:1-3; Proverbs 29:18; Habakkuk 2:2)
6. CHAMPION YOUNG PEOPLE
YWAM is called to champion youth. We believe God has gifted and called young people to spearhead vision and ministry. We are committed to value them, trust them, train them, support them, make space for them and release them. They are not only the Church of the future; they are the Church of today. We commit to follow where they lead, in the will of God.
-YWAM is called to champion young people. We believe in their leadership and potential to change the world and are dedicated to equip them with the tools to do so. (Joel 2:28; Acts 2:17; 1 Timothy 4:12; 1 Samuel 2:18-19; 17:33-37; Daniel 1:4, 8-9; Jeremiah 1:5-10)
7. BE BROAD-STRUCTURED AND DECENTRALIZED
YWAM is broad-structured and diverse, yet integrated. We are a global family of ministries held together by shared purpose, vision, values and relationship. We believe that structures should serve the people and the purposes of God. Every ministry at every level has the privilege and responsibility of accountability to a circle of elders, with overall international accountability to the YWAM Global Leadership Team.
-YWAM is broad structured and decentralized, with operating locations linked together by relationship, shared values, accountability to leadership, and a commitment to world evangelization. (Mark 10:42-43; Exodus 18:17-26; John 8:36; 1 Corinthians 3:4-9; Hebrews 13:7,17)
8. BE INTERNATIONAL AND INTERDENOMINATIONAL
YWAM is international and interdenominational in its global scope as well as its local constituency. We believe that ethnic, linguistic and denominational diversity, along with redeemed aspects of culture, are positive factors that contribute to the health and growth of the mission.
-YWAM is international and interdenominational in its scope and constituency. We believe that cultural, racial and theological diversity are positive factors that contribute to the health and growth of the mission. (Matthew 24:14; Ephesians 4:1-16; Revelation 7:9)
9. HAVE A BIBLICAL WORLDVIEW
YWAM is called to a Biblical worldview. We believe that the Bible makes a clear division between good and evil; right and wrong. The practical dimensions of life are no less spiritual than the ministry expressions. Everything done in obedience to God is spiritual. We seek to honor God with all that we do, equipping and mobilizing men and women of God to take roles of service and influence in every arena of society.
-YWAM makes no distinction between the sacred and the secular. We seek to honor all functions equally within the Kingdom of God. No roles or ministries are more important or spiritual than others. We seek to equip and mobilize men and women of God to take roles of service and influence in every sphere of society. (Acts 11:9; 1 Peter 4:11; 1 Corinthians 6:19; Zechariah 14:20-21; Romans 12:3-8, 13:1-10, Philemon 1-2; Titus 3:13; Colossians 4:14; Hebrews 13:16)
-YWAM affirms the importance of living holy and righteous lives. We believe that holiness is a fruit of God’s grace, transforming the motives of the heart, and affecting our words, conduct, business dealings and relationships. (1 Samuel 15:10-28; Psalm 32:1-5, 51:6-17,; Matthew 5:8; 2 Corinthians 7:1; Hebrews 12:14; 1 Thessalonians 4:7)
10. FUNCTION IN TEAMS
YWAM is called to function in teams in all aspects of ministry and leadership. We believe that a combination of complementary gifts, callings, perspectives, ministries and generations working together in unity at all levels of our mission provides wisdom and safety . Seeking God’s will and making decisions in a team context allows accountability and contributes to greater relationship, motivation, responsibility and ownership of the vision.
-YWAM is called to team ministry. We recognize that functioning in teams at all levels of the organization provides an opportunity for balance of spiritual gifts and insights. (Ecclesiastes 4:9-12; Mark 6:7; Ephesians 5:21; Proverbs 15:22; Acts 15:22; Acts 10:25-26)
11. EXHIBIT SERVANT LEADERSHIP
YWAM is called to servant leadership as a lifestyle, rather than a leadership hierarchy. A servant leader is one who honors the gifts and callings of those under his/her care and guards their rights and privileges. Just as Jesus served His disciples, we stress the importance of those with leadership responsibilities serving those whom they lead.
-YWAM is called to servant leadership. A servant leader is one who honors the calling of his/her followers and guards their rights and privileges. Just as Jesus served His disciples, we stress the importance of those with leadership responsibilities in our mission serving those whom they lead. (Luke 17:7-10; John 13:12-17; Mark 10:42-45)
12. DO FIRST, THEN TEACH
YWAM is committed to doing first, then teaching. We believe that firsthand experience gives authority to our words. Godly character and a call from God are more important than an individual’s gifts, abilities and expertise.
-YWAM is committed to doing, then teaching, according to Jesus’ example. We affirm the importance of living a concept, theory or belief in personal experience as essential to passing it on to others. We believe that godly character and the fruit of the Spirit are more important than an individuals’s gifts, abilities and expertise. (Ezra 7:10; Acts 1:1; Philippians 4:8-9; Colossians 3:1-17; 2 Peter 1:5-10; Micah 6:8)
13. BE RELATIONSHIP-ORIENTED
YWAM is dedicated to being relationship-oriented in our living and working together. We desire to be united through lives of holiness, mutual support, transparency, humility, and open communication, rather than a dependence on structures or rules.
-YWAM is dedicated to being relationship oriented in our living and working together. We desire to minimize the need for structures and rules by leading lives of transparency, humility and open communication. (1 John 1:7; Galatians 5:1)
14. VALUE THE INDIVIDUAL
YWAM is called to value each individual. We believe in equal opportunity and justice for all. Created in the image of God, people of all nationalities, ages and functions have distinctive contributions and callings. We are committed to honoring God-given leadership and ministry gifts in both men and women.
-YWAM is called to value each individual. We believe all races, ages, cultures and individuals – male and female – have distinctive contributions and callings. (Genesis 1:27; Psalm 139:13-16; Galatians 3:28; 1 Corinthians 12:4-31; Acts 13:1-3; Ephesians 2:19-22; 4:4-7)
15. VALUE FAMILIES
YWAM affirms the importance of families serving God together in missions, not just the father and/or mother. We encourage the development of strong and healthy family units, with each member sharing the call to missions and contributing their gifts in unique and complementary ways.
-YWAM recognizes the value of the family. We affirm the importance of fathers, mothers, and children all sharing a call to missions and contributing in unique, complimentary and vital ways. We support the necessity for each individual family to be a strong and healthy unit. (Deuteronomy 4:9-10, 40, 6:6-7, 32:46; Proverbs 31; 1 Timothy 3:4)
16. RELY ON RELATIONSHIP-BASED SUPPORT
YWAM is called to a relationship-based support system, depending upon God and His people for financial provision, both corporately and individually. We believe that relationship-based support promotes responsibility, accountability, communication, and mutual prayer. It involves the donor as a partner in ministry. As God and others have been generous toward us, so we desire to be generous. YWAMers give themselves, their time and talents to God through the mission with no expectation of remuneration.
-YWAM is called to practice a life of dependence upon God and His people for financial provision, both corporately and individually. (Phil 4:6-7, 10-20; 3 John 5-8)
-YWAM is called to practice generosity and to model and teach the spirit of generosity in all we do. (Romans 12:8-13; 1 Timothy 5:17, 6:18; Philippians 4:17-18; Luke 6:38; Acts 20:35; Psalm 112:5)
17. PRACTICE HOSPITALITY
YWAM affirms the ministry of hospitality as an expression of God’s character and the value of people. We believe it is important to open our hearts, homes and campuses to serve and honor one another, our guests and the poor and needy, not as acts of social protocol, but as expressions of generosity.
-YWAM is dedicated to hospitality. We believe it is important to serve and honor our fellow YWAMers, guests, and the poor and needy through this ministry. (3 John 8; Hebrews 13:2; 1 Timothy 3:2; Titus 1:8; Romans 12:13; 1 Peter 4:9)
(YWAM Foundational Values approved by the Global Leadership Team August 2003; released February 2004.)
There you have it…
Try as I may the following three ‘original’ Foundational values, do NOT seem to fit in anywhere on the ‘newer’ list of Values. Not that a list of ‘values’ is anything special on their own without the commitment to ‘embrace’ and ‘live out to the letter’, however these THREE NOTABLE EXCLUSIONS, in my opinion spell out – just where YWAM has gone wrong in recent years.
Here they are…
-YWAM recognizes the Bible to be God’s inspired and authoritative Word and relies upon the authority of the Holy Scriptures as the standard for life and ministry. Obedience to the Word of God is an evidence of our commitment to Jesus’ Lordship. (Hebrews 4:12; 2 Timothy 3:16; John 3:31-32; 2 Timothy 2:15)
-YWAM affirms the importance of the local church and seeks to promote unity among all God’s people. We endeavor to work in partnership with other believers, building bridges among Christian leaders, churches and missions for the fulfillment of the Great Commission. (Philippians 1:3-5; 1 Thessalonians 1:2-10; Ephesians 3:8-10)
-YWAM affirms personal responsibility and volunteerism, encouraging individuals to seek God for guidance and direction regarding ministry roles and methods of performing their work. We encourage personal initiative in these areas, making decisions together with their leaders both YWAM and others. (Exodus 3:4; Isaiah 6:8; 1 Samuel 3:10; Mark 1:17-18; Matthew 9:9; Acts 26:12-20)
What do you think?
Your comments and feedback is welcomed.
As promised, here is the link to that YWAM Base mentioned in the Introduction.