Diving in: Brandi Teeney’s faith takes hear across the globe and home again

July 2015 Posted in People
After graduating from Silverton High School, Brandi Teeney embarked on a six-month missions trip to Australia and Europe with Youth With A Mission’s Discipleship Training School.

After graduating from Silverton High School, Brandi Teeney embarked on a six-month missions trip to Australia and Europe with Youth With A Mission’s Discipleship Training School.

By Brenna Wiegand

Brandi Teeney has two passions – sharing God’s love and swimming. This summer, she dove headlong into both.

After graduating from Silverton High School last year, Brandi set out with 13 other young women for Australia, Latvia and Amsterdam as students in the Discipleship Training School (DTS) of Christian missionary organization Youth With A Mission (YWAM).

The first three months in Australia, DTS students took classes and plunged into community service. They got a taste of homelessness when dropped on the streets of Newcastle for 24 hours with little more than their Bibles.

In Amsterdam, days were more free form.

“We did not have any planned ministry so we just woke up every day and asked the Holy Spirit what we should do,” Brandi said. “That led us to things like giving flowers and writing letters to girls in the windows of the red light district or singing worship songs in the center of the

city, visiting with people in coffee shops or partnering with the local YWAM in 24/7 prayer vigils.”

During their 30 days in poverty stricken Latvia, they teamed with a local YWAM group to speak at schools about the dangers of human trafficking. They helped run a clothing bank and gave out more than 1,500 food bags.

“For us it didn’t matter whether they really knew Jesus or not; we came in and just loved them unconditionally the way Jesus loves people,” Brandi said. “As I’ve come home I’m still trying to work on that really hard; I’m here to serve; that’s totally what my purpose is. I’ve struggled a lot since being home but it’s been a good challenge and knowing this is where I’m supposed to be makes it a lot easier.”

That – and swimming, at least since she was 10. Currently the lead lifeguard at Silverton Community Pool, Brandi gives lessons and, with Aquatics Director Jennifer Evans, is building a YMCA swim team for kids 5-18 to feed into the high school program.

“I don’t know what it is in Silverton but we just have a lot of really good swimmers … we are working on getting more competitive and just meeting everybody’s needs,” she said.

Like her faith, swimming helps her through life’s rough patches.

“I’ll just go get in the water,” she said. “When you’re swimming, all you can focus on is what you’re doing in that moment – and you’re getting an awesome whole-body workout at the same time.”

Her six-month overseas workout brought to the surface Brandi’s talents and passions. She did a lot of growing up.

“When I went I was more timid and I think almost afraid of life,” she said. “I’ve become a lot more independent and, season by season, day by day, I feel ready to take life on. I don’t know what the future holds but I’m just really excited not to plan anything and see what God has for me.”

Brandi keeps a blog of her experiences at www.lovesetyoufree.com.

Sorry, comments for this entry are closed at this time.