Who Are We

Wayne, Hilary & Adelaide Denny. Preparing to Serve in Leadership Training in Senegal, Africa. God has called us to take advantage of a unique window of religious freedom in Muslim Senegal by equipping church leaders who have a heart for reaching their country and the Muslim world.

We should be jealous. . . for the honour of His name – troubled when it remains unknown, hurt when it is ignored, indignant when it is blasphemed. And all the time anxious and determined that it shall be given the honour and glory which are due to it.” John Stott

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Thanks MTI Staff!

We are so thankful for the staff at MTI who made our stay there great! We are especially thankful for the children's staff who made Addie's time there wonderful. She had a rough start, but by the end of the 5 weeks, I wasn't sure we would be able to get her to leave!

Gay and her grandson Mekhi were there all 5 weeks. Addie absolutely loved Gay who was with the babies the whole time. Many times Addie would end up with the babies too! Mekhi became good buddies with Addie too. I think he liked her because she taught him the phrase "I have stinky feet!"
Thanks Gay!

Jenessa was Addie's teacher the last 3 weeks. Addie was so excited to go down to her class everyday. They did some great crafts too (I'm not sure I'm ready to let Addie finger paint like Jenessa did!)
Thanks Jenessa.

Danielle was Addie's teacher the first two weeks. I think she had the toughest job! But she got Addie to love being in the nursery. She taught Addie some great new phrases ("that was awesome!) and a new song (something about two tigers running fast...)
Thanks Danielle!

The most amazing part is that they got 5 two and three year olds to take naps together in the same room every day! Addie loved her special cot. We actually had to go down one night and show her that the room was locked because she didn't want to sleep in her bed in our room.

Thanks again MTI staff!

Sunday, August 17, 2008

"Mommy and Daddy, go on a date!"

I told Addie tonight that we were going to go on a date and she almost pushed me out of my chair to go! She was ready to spend some time with her friends Tim and Andrea. They have been at MTI with us now for 4 weeks and we have enjoyed getting to know them! Addie has made friends with lots of people in our time here and brings joy to so many!

Thanks Tim and Andrea for letting us go on a date and for being such good friends to all of us!

"Would you be mad at me if I volunteered to die?"

Our training at MTI this week as spurred many interesting conversations between us. Let me give you a little background for this question that Wayne asked me. Wednesday morning, the topic on our schedule was You Under Stress. Tuesday afternoon we had talked about different kinds of stress, and so I'm thinking on Wednesday morning, we may talk about how to deal with the stress of shopping in a new culture, or dealing with the stress of learning a new language. It was a little different though. We told we were going to be having a simulation that morning and then they broke us into two groups and took us to the basement. We were then herded into a small space about 8 feet long, 6 feet wide and 5 feet high made out of cardboard boxes. It was then that we were told what the simulation was. "You are hiding from rebels who have taken over the area. Your children have been evacuated to safety, but you must figure out how to survive." We heard the rebels moving around outside our shelter once in a while and had to be quiet, then had to make sure everyone was ok, and then at one point, we were told that 5 of us could evacuate on a plane that was coming in to rescue some and we had to pick who. Later on, the "rebels" found us and were then told we could free 3 people, and finally we had to pick people to be executed. The simulation finally ended with 4 of our group "shot" (complete with real gun sounds) and we were all freed.

Yes, it was just a simulation, but for many of us, it brought images of what could really happen. Even reading the news this week, we are reminded that the world is a very volatile place. We have no guarantees of our future, and though Senegal is a very peaceful country, we never know what the future may hold. I was also reminded very strongly this week though that God is in control and on the throne. To be honest, I was very excited at the end of the simulation to realize the peace that God had given me. If I had done this a few years ago, I think I would have been much more emotional and frightened during this simulation, just thinking about the possibility of this happening. It was amazing to me though the peace that God gave me, because I know it was all from Him.

I have been thinking a lot about persecution lately (this was just one of the many reasons why). I was reading Philippians 3 this week and was struck by the verses 10-11..."that I may know him and the power of his resurrection"... ok, sounds good to me!..."and may share in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, that by any means possible I may attain the resurrection from the dead." This last half is what I have been thinking about. I am glad that God has saved me and that I will be like him in the resurrection, but often I really don't want to share in his sufferings or become like him in his death. But this is what he has called me to do! I was reading in 1 Peter later and it talks about rejoicing in suffering which I share with Christ. Too often that is the last thing I want to do! But then I was thinking about what I often pray, "Father, make me more like your Son." And then I realized that this prayer is not just about being like Christ in his glorification, but in his suffering as well. We often speak of taking up our crosses as just being inconvenienced by people, but what if it really means following Jesus into death, am I willing to do that as well?

So this brings us to Wayne's question, "Would you be mad at me if I volunteered to die?" We were told to pick 3 people who were to be executed. If we didn't pick, they would kill us all. This was a very difficult decision for both groups (we were in separate groups by the way). And my answer to him? "No!" Yes, I would be very sad, but I would not be angry. God is calling both of us to serve him overseas. Our lives are his. And we firmly believe that this means both in life and in death, we are his. We believe that God will redeem any sacrifice that we make, even though he may not save us in this life. We want to know Christ and be like him.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Update on our training

Sorry for the lack of posts recently - the internet was down all last week. So to catch you up on what we are doing in Colorado...we finished our PILAT language program over a week ago and now are into week 2 of 3 of SPLICE, the cultural and interpersonal program. We have enjoyed both programs so far, but they have been vastly different. PILAT worked our brain, SPLICE is working our hearts. It is amazing how exhausting introspection can be. We have dealt with such issues as community, cultural differences, lifestyle choices, conflict, and stress! We are finding it very helpful to think through these issues as they directly relate to our not so distant future plans.

We also had the pleasure last week of meeting with our WorldVenture Africa directors, Glenn and Kathy. They treated us to a wonderful picnic one evening and we had a great time picking their brains and gleaning wisdom from their years of overseas service. They were a great encouragement to us!

And finally, Addie. She has been doing great and has really turned a corner this week as far as being comfortable in the nursery and really enjoying all the people around here. She was quite overwhelmed the first few weeks at being away from mom and dad all day and then having people around all the time who she didn't really know well (mommy was a little overwhelmed too!). This week though she has been doing great in the nursery and has made some older friends as well (as in our age!). She even got to spend one evening with Tim and Andrea while mom and dad got to go on a date! We are so thankful for all the workers and friends here who have done so well with her and put us so much at ease.

Sorry this post isn't too exciting. We have been learning a lot though and as we process it, we promise to tell more (when we're not quite so tired!).

Here is a bonus picture, just in case you forgot how cute she is!