Every four years, Nazarene Youth International (NYI) gathers young people all over the world for a unique opportunity to empower emerging leaders through an event called Third Wave. This year, 240 young people came to India and represented over 60 countries.
Before Third Wave started, the 49 participants from the Asia-Pacific region met for a couple of days for a time of worship, learning together, and prayer. According to one of our representatives from the Chinese Ministries, “I learned a lot from our regional training sessions, it is professional and practical… It is true that we need to be aware of the people that we meet every day and be prepared to share the gospel with them. Every believer has the responsibility to disciple others.”
After our time together as a region, Third Wave started and participants from the other regions arrived and we had worship times together.
Adiv, from Australia, said: “Third Wave was one of the best experiences I’ve ever had in my life. It was just crazy to see so many Nazarenes from around the world… come to India to worship our Lord Jesus Christ! I believe the reason everyone got along so well was because of the Holy Spirit that connects us together and unites us as one, regardless of nationality or language.”
During the week, plenary sessions, workshops, and discussion groups were provided on the core strategies of NYI: Be-Evangelism, Do-Discipleship, and Go-Leadership Development.
Before the plenary sessions and workshop sessions started, the participants had a day of cultural immersion, which helped the young people spend time with each other and form friendships.
Makoto, from Japan, shared that while the sessions and lectures were wonderful, he thought the break times, eating times, and fellowship time before going to bed were also great as they allowed for different people with different languages and cultures to interact. “These were the times when we freely talked…It’s just awesome hearing different life stories, struggles, passions, dreams, and calling. If I had to sum up all my learnings and inspirations from the event in one phrase, it would be: I am not alone. Seeing hundreds of young people, representing hundreds of thousands of young people, serving One God in one church, encouraged me beyond measure. We are not alone in this journey.”
Every Third Wave, a world market is held where young people bring items from their countries and sell them for a cause. We had a fun night!
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Ministry with others was also a highlight and young people brought items to help Child Development Centers in India. The participants also learned about Creative Access ministry.
Rona, from Vanuatu, said: “The one thing that challenged me the most is making disciples. I learned that even youths like me could make disciples… and not just depending on the elders to do that. I also heard the stories from restricted areas and yet people there continued to serve the Lord and make disciples. I burst into tears listening to their stories. I feel sorry for them but I learned about commitment and that there is a reward someday for such faithfulness.”
Elfa, from the Philippines, said: “Through Third Wave, God showed me that His love has no boundaries and God inspired me to be more committed and passionate in doing His work. I am forever grateful to the people who made this trip possible for me.”
Indeed, Thank you for your continued prayer and support for our young emerging leaders. We believe that this experience allows young people to have a bigger perspective of our mission.
As Than from Vietnam shared, he realized why God chose him to attend this training and it was not to become proud of what he has already done in his ministry but to see areas that could be improved, especially focusing on and taking care of his spiritual growth.
As we finished our last day in India, we didn’t look at the gathering and learning time coming to an end, but it will continue with a ripple effect.
Jarryd, from Australia, said, “The beauty of Third Wave for me is that it wasn’t just a conference that went for a week. This was a conference that will last the rest of my life as I continue to be challenged and ask questions. I came back from Third Wave with many more questions than I did answers, and I think that is such a great place to continue my journey both in ministry and on a personal level.”
And for some, the movement has just begun.
Thank you for investing in the lives of our young people!
– Contributed by Janary Godoy, Asia-Pacific NYI Coordinator