walk on in.

walk on in.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Lately.....sorry its apparently been a YEAR...ha!

Wyldlife Camp:
At the beginning of this month I was privileged to help take about 100 middle school students to camp in Malaysia! The weekend consisted of: s'mores, skits, fun music, kayaking, rock climbing, zip lining, bonfires and most importantly the gospel was shared and presented in cool and relatable ways! I had a cabin of 5 girls who represented the American School AND the British School. These five girls had a relationship with Christ previous to the camp, but were able to re connect with God in a powerful and real ways over the weekend. One girl was stirred to start praying for her school, another realized she was too busy and needed to cut some stuff out in her life to spend more time with Him, another (who is usually pretty bottled up and harsh) was moved to tears and for the first time I saw her outwardly focused and her selfishness seemed to disappear. "Don't let anyone look down on you because you are young"-sometimes people perhaps are quick to question what these "camps" can really do for kids of the middle school age-do they really change lives?-they are young, they haven't really "lived" yet. From this weekends experience I know first hand that God can move in anyone, in any place at any age.
Many other cabin experiences were similar-quite a few students (a lot of 6th graders) prayed to receive Christ in their hearts. Some wanted a "re-set" and were able to commit again, their path, to he Lord. Other students simply needed to ask questions about divorce, about Jesus, about the pressures of school. I was incredibly blow away by the love and tenderness shown by every WL volunteer-High school students and a few adults; they simply became the international witness of Jesus!
Praise God for this weekend and Praise God for New Life.
Whats been going on?
A lot of the reason I held back at sending out an email sooner, was the fact that our staff here in Singapore is going through some big changes; I wanted to communicate with you these changes after things seemed to be more concrete. This summer will bring a lot of change: My Area Director, Brad Akin, his wife and three children will be moving back to the States (after 6 years) where he will be working with YoungLife college at Arizona State. My fellow field staffer, Sarah Mae, will also be moving back to the States where she will be looking at options within the YL world-Japan is high on the list of potentials. My other fellow field staffer, Kelsey Bryant and her fiance Evan Starr have just accepted a YoungLife college job in Michigan and will also be moving back to the States....A lot is happening! I am so excited for my friends! Though there is a little sadness, I mostly feel at peace with all the new transitions-it is a supernatural peace that surpasses my understanding.
Good News?!-I'll be staying here :). My friends Eric and Abby will be staying as well! AND we just received official word that a Regional Director from California and his lovely wife will be MOVING here over the summer! They are a great couple and have such a great vision for this place-he has had over 20 years experience in YL in CA and Washington and he really thinks Singapore YoungLife could take off even more that it already has been! I am excited for them to get here and excited to share life with them!
My Heart. My Work
A lot has been happening-I have been busy busy busy...but now life seems to returning to a more normal pace which I am thankful for! Camp is behind me, my assignments for all my YL trainings are in so now Campaigners and Clubs are on the horizon while I start making our summer camp plans more concrete! In the last few weeks my HS friend, Heather and I have been able to start an 8th grade girls Bible study-which developed after WL camp. It is so exciting for me to see Heather take initiative and disciple this group of girls-I am very proud of her! In addition to that we have multiple Bible studies that are running weekly or bi-weekly and I also find myself spending quite a bit of time on the British School campus as well!-The service project I lead is under way and I even have some returning students from last term!
Though life is busy-I have found that this semester ( I realize we are just hitting the mid point) has been very good for my heart and soul. I have become a morning person-which means I get up early, run, shower, dream, pray, talk to God, read my Bible, Joural etc usually all before 9 AM. If you know me, you know this is a big deal! ha-usually I'm a night owl. This seriously has so changed my life and the Lord has been teaching me so so so much. I feel this year I have had to TRUST Him more than ever-in work, in personal issues, in life period. Another thing I have been learning is that this life is "but a vapor"-we are here for such a little time.
This idea was most certainly solidified with the arrival of the Japanese earthquake, tsunami and now radiation disaster. YL Singapore and YL Japan have close bonds as we work on trips with them etc so it was incredibly hard to see and I am still blow away by the magnitude of the disaster. We are so thankful God kept our friends safe, but we continue to pray for the country of Japan. Please pray that the Lord could use YL and other Christians in a mighty mighty way. Japan is one of the hardest/slowest moving places to reach for Christ-maybe during this time of crisis hearts can be changed!
Thank You
I saw many of you over the Christmas and New Years Holiday-thank you ever so much for welcoming me with such open arms. Your love and support means the world to me. Because of Christ working in YOU, kid's lives were changed at WL camp, Because of you generosity YL Singapore is growing, transitioning staff and casting great visions for the future, because of Christ and your prayers we can see the country of Japan turn around for the good. Because of the faithful prayers of the Saints and the Lord, I have learned to trust and put my hope in the Lord more and more each day!
God bless and keep you
-denae wood

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Cambodia Update






Hello! As many of you know I spent the last week in Cambodia! The trip was AMAZING!!! I was so blessed to be a part of it and consider it a privilege to be able to serve there!

A quick recap
Saturday&Sunday: did a lot of touristy type things-visited the Royal Palace, the Killing Fields, the Genocide Museum and the Russian market
Monday-Wednesday: three days of hard labor! worked at New Hope Orphanage with our YL friends from Japan! We painted, did construction, played with kids etc! It was a great time of hard work and community and fellowship
Thursday&Friday-spent two days reflecting and relaxing at Sokah beach resort
Saturday: Said goodbye to our friends from Japan and returned to the orphanage to do some last minute painting and returned home Sunday

It was a whirlwind trip and I am still trying to process everything I saw and did. As many of you know Cambodia has had a history of turmoil and despair. If you don't know about it I encourage you to educate yourselves about it. I think that it is very important that you realize and understand Cambodia's history and culture. I knew very little before I visited and must say I had quite a rude awakening. I encourage all of you to view the film "The Killing Fields" -it gives an honest insight/true account of what happened in Cambodia during the 1970s. The Killing Fields and genocide museum were incredible testaments to the devastation that happened in Cambodia-I think it was very important for us to take the teens to these places-it helped them realize what the people we were serving had been through and why the majority of Cambodia is run down and "3rd world". It took me a few days to get over the shock of leaving the matropolized , 1st word city of Singapore and entering Cambodia.

Working at the orphanage was probably the most impactful experience for for the Japan YL team and the team from Singapore. I saw teenagers work so so so hard and give their all in everything they did. The truly took on the nature of a servant and poured blood, sweat and tears into serving New Hope Orphanage. New Hope Orphanage is located about two hours away form Phnom Phen, the country's capital. It is an orphanage that has little funding or care. All the children sleep directly on the floor, many have little clothes or belongings. Getting to interact with these kids was very untactful and it was incredible to see the teenagers instantly bond with them. I am so proud of how well the teenagers from both groups gave their all while at this orphanage.

This is beginning to turn into a novel-but know this: God is a work in teen's lives in Japan and Singapore. I believe He is smiling at all the work they did in Cambodia. God wants to bless Yl in Cambodia and believers in Cambodia. Pray for the people, the orphans and the culture-may walls be broken down everyday. May the kids who came and served so faithfully, really realize who they are serving-may all involved not soon forget this trip and all we saw and did.

Thank you for you prayers and encouragement.
Please know I would ALWAYS love to tell you more about this trip. My international phone number is a "918" number so should be free for the majority of you and those of you who have free long distance-I'd love to tell you more. Also attached are some pictures from the week!

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Wyldlife Camp





This past weekend my team and I headed to Malaysia for Wyldlife camp!!! We were met up with WL kids from Panang Malaysia-so we had about 100 people in total! It was the biggest camp to date! I led a cabin of girls, helped lead some games and just got to love on a ton of people. It was a wonderful experience-I was able to get to know girls on a more intimate level. I feel all I've done for the last month is just meeting people and then forgetting names and face because I've been meeting 40 people at a time. Camp was an awesome experience because I actually go to know kids names, their history, what they thought about God etc! Way cool experience for me. The kids didn't have a bad time either-they got have YL club every day and night, bonfire, outdoor games/sports and quality time with leaders and other kids that love them!

Most importantly the message of Jesus was proclaimed and kids got to hear how Jesus is our creator, how we all have sin in our lives, how he died to pay the cost of that sin, and how he rose again and wants us to journey on with him as our guide. There were many girls in my cabin (and many kids) who wanted to learn more or go deeper with Christ because of hearing this message. Also there were many kids who wanted to start following this "Jesus" now and wanted to become one of his children and friend-letting him be their guide. So so so so awesome and may God be glorified through all these decisions made and may we, I, and the team be faithful to follow up with our individual kids. Thank you for all your prayers-if you contact me I can tell you more specifically who and what to be praying for! Camp was definitely an amazing experience and God showed up in a mighty way.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Welcome to Singapore!





Well it has been a week since I have landed in my new home of Singapore! I have gotten to see a lot and meet a lot of really cool people! This past weekend the whole country was celebrating Chinese New Year...and guess what?? It is the year of the tiger! I'm a tiger ;-)! It is a huge holiday here in Asia and I would say it is a mix between Thanksgiving and Christmas! Everyone gets off work and school...and everything is decorated and festive! Sunday afternoon, the Walton family (the family I'm living with ) took me around Clarke Quay and gave me a mini tour of all the historical sights of downtown. We also were able to go an exhilarating, free fall swing ride...we ended the night with Indian Food...yummy! Last night, the Young Life team threw a welcome party for me at the Waltons house! There were about 35 people in attendance and it was good to meet a lot of the Young Life committee and their families.
I finally feel as though I am catching up on some sleep and my body is beginning to feel rested! Tomorrow is a big day with a staff meeting, and then going to one of the schools to help with Running Club! I am excited to start working and getting to meet kiddos!

I am thankful for all the support and prayers people have been communicating with me...it really makes my day and reminds me of Christ's love for me. Thank you Thank you Thank you. You all are in my prayers. Never hesitate to communicate with me how I may serve you, even while I am overseas! Much love

Thursday, February 11, 2010

I MADE IT



Hello All! I have made it to Singapore...all in one piece and with all the luggage! After a week of goodbye parties and spending quality time with friends, I boarded a plane for the flight of a lifetime! I have been here for three days now, where I have been trying to get some rest and get to know the rest of the team better! Thank you for all the well-wishes and encouragement! I will keep you updated on all the latest and greatest God will be doing here! Keep me in your prayers and God bless you all!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

As many of you know the last three weeks I have been at Cross Cultural Orientation and New Staff Training! While there I took two graduate classes over Youth Ministry and Jesus, according to the scriptures. I also was able to learn a lot about moving to a new culture and what emotions to expect. We were trained on aspects of the HR department at Young Life, WyldLife tactics, and new innovative ideas of YoungLife club and campaigners. We also learned a lot about personal discipleship and growing while we minister. The three weeks were awesome and I learned a lot about myself, Young Life and Christ. I told my mom when I returned home Friday, "I feel like I've just returned from a mission trip". I had the same type of "culture shock", due to the fact that for the last 21 days I had been surrounded by beautiful Colorado, people who have a heart for teens in different countries, and people who love Young Life! I am very excited to apply all I've learned. It is very beneficial to me that I just returned home from training because I can use and apply all I learned very very soon, seeing as I'm moving in TWO WEEKS! Thanks for prayers, support, encouragement and for helping provide this awesome training I was very blessed to attend! Much love!