Serene Yang | Women’s Ministry (Singapore)
July 3, 2009
Could you share with us a little about yourself and how you get involved with full-time ministry in TWR-Asia?
Before I joined TWR-Asia (then known as TWR-North East Asia or TWR-NEA), I was involved in broadcasting with Mediacorp, a media company in Singapore, for 10 years.
It had always been my mother’s desire for me to serve in ministry full-time. However, I did not have the same desire, and refused to listen to her. This continued until my mother went home to be with the Lord in September 1998. Subsequently, the Lord spoke to me, and I felt that I had to go into ministry full-time.
How did you first come to hear about TWR, and what made you join TWR? How long have you been with TWR-Asia? What area are you currently serving in, in TWR-Asia?
A friend of mine gave me TWR-Asia’s number as she knew that I wanted to serve the Lord as a full-timer. When I called TWR-Asia, I was told that they were looking for a volunteer to serve in the ministry. I told them that I was willing to learn and serve as a volunteer, and they replied that they would contact me if there was an opening. Around that time, Mediacorp wanted to renew my contract. There were many meetings and discussions about my new contract, but I refused to sign even though the terms were quite attractive, as I was set on serving in a ministry.
One day, I prayed to the Lord, and told Him I would trust that He would take care of me, even though I did not see any open doors at the moment. The next morning, I tendered my resignation with my previous employers in faith. That very afternoon, I got a call from TWR for an interview, for a full-time position! Thank God for His timing! I have been experiencing His faithfulness ever since I first stepped out in faith.
I have been in TWR-Asia for 10 years now. I first started as a Program Producer/Presenter, and was responsible for TWR-Asia’s Mandarin programming needs. Over time, the ministry evolved and a new area of need came about. That was how I came to be doing what I am doing now. I am helping to coordinate TWR-Asia’s ministry to women as part of the Media Resource Group, and am working closely with the other TWR-Asia women’s ministry coordinators around the Asia region.
How has your own life experience helped you in your ministry to women?
Anyone who is involved in Christian ministry knows that as soon as you pray about, or teach a particular topic, you will be challenged with it in your own life. This has certainly been my experience as I work on putting together the teaching and programme for Biblical Counselling for our Women’s work in Asia.
One night in June 2008, I felt really overwhelmed, and I started crying uncontrollably. I knew that there was something wrong, but I did not know what, or why. A sense of depression seemed to have overcome me, and I cried a silent cry from the bottom of my heart “Lord, save me! Help me, Lord!”
I tried to worship as usual, but there did not seem to be any breakthrough, and I still felt a void. As I was contemplating this, a verse from God’s word came to mind. It was from Jeremiah 15:16, “When your words came, I ate them; they were my joy and my heart’s delight, for I bear your name, O Lord God Almighty.”
I read it again and again. Then another verse, John 6:63, came to mind, “The spirit gives life; the flesh counts for nothing. The words I have spoken to you are spirit and they are life.” As I was pondering this verse, and struggling with it, another verse came to me. This time, it was Psalm 34:18, “The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit”.
Suddenly, my heart felt a sense of warmth and a prayer arose in my heart. I also felt a prompting to look up what the symptoms of depression were, and I began looking into detailed information on depression.
There were other things which happened, and I believe God was leading me to experience what “Biblical Counseling” was. His word is so true and so powerful! He is the lasting hope for hurting hearts! Thank God for His Word.
What are some memorable or inspirational moments you had in your ministry with TWR?
Looking at our co-workers in the Asia region (i.e. China, Nepal, Cambodia, etc.) and seeing them work hand-in-hand with the field workers, I cannot help but feel amazed. Such team-work and unity is an example of the Lord’s guidance and teaching.
One of the sweetest blessings I received in my work is the unity and ever-ready help and support for one another in the ministry. This was especially so when I received tremendous support from my dear sisters-in-Christ when I was helping to organize the TWR-Asia Women’s Ministry Conference in 2008. They provided ongoing encouragement and assistance in my time of need.
I believe that God will continue to lead and guide us to live in the love and joy of an anointed relationship with Him. May every step we take as a ministry bring Him glory!
On a lighter note, tell us something about yourself that even your own sister doesn’t know about!
Over the years, I have overcome my fears of conversing in English and have grown more comfortable communicating with my colleagues with my limited English. Also, due to the influence of people around me, and hearing the constant use of Singlish, I have also come to pepper my speech with Singlish phrases!