Jeeranun Sangpunta, or “Tuy” as she was known to many of us, was born and raised in Suphanburi province 2.5 hours north of Bangkok in Central Thailand. She was raised in a Buddhist home and spent the first 17 years of here life growing up there, the youngest of 4 girls.
She moved to Bangkok when she was 18 to attend Ramkhamhaeng University and graduated with a degree in Business and Human Resources. In 1997, while at university, she had the opportunity to hear about Jesus and gave her life to the Lord during her time at Ramkhamhaeng.
In 2002, Tuy began working with the Child Sponsorship Program, part of Project L.I.F.E. Foundation. She loved working with her team knowing that she was making a difference in the lives of many children here in Thailand.
During one of the YWAM Thailand annual staff conferences, she felt the Lord saying that she was to do a Discipleship Training School (DTS). At first she was not happy because she didn’t want to go so she just ignored it. All last year, the prompting from the Lord just would not go away. At the same time, something in her heart also changed and she decided that she should go too. So she started to get ready to go but then broke her wrist and was unable to go.
When she heard that there would be another DTS in Chiang Mai in September 2004, Tuy started planning and praying about attending. She was very happy to be accepted to the school and had a fantastic DTS experience. Her plan was to come back and continue working with Child Sponsorship following the DTS but she also had a tremendous burden to take care of her parents and her family. In the long term, she always felt that the Lord might be calling her to be a missionary to Laos someday!
3 thoughts on “Tuy Sangpunta”
Tuy was a wonderful, young Thai woman who was a lover of God and one could find her praying at different times during the day. Tuy had a heart for the poor and those in difficult situations. She had a great smile and was full of joy in living.She is deeply missed and greatly loved and we will follow in her words to "never give up" in loving and obeying God.
G Stephen Goode
I had the privilege of knowing Tuy for a short time and found a young woman who was passionate for God and equally passionate for the lost. She had the biggest, warmest smile and a heart to match!
Reflecting on the Life of a Faithful YWAMer by Steve Goode
We just returned from the service at the Buddhist Wat closest to Tuy’s home in Supanburi. Tuy had led her three older sisters to the Lord in the last five years. They were the only Christians in their village and they had never been to a Christian funeral before, so this was all new for all of us. Tuy was also the favorite of her Mom, being the youngest daughter. She called her mom every day from her DTS in Chiang Mai that finished last week telling her about what God was doing in her life.
Sitting in front of Buddhist statues in this community center for the village, the old village ladies asked some of our team…."Could you tell us about becoming a Christian and about this school that Tuy went to in Chiang Mai?" It seemed like the most natural question and the opportunity was there like that for the whole of the afternoon and evening. The DTS students were also there at the Wat and sang a beautiful Thai worship song.
At the end we had the family come out, (which was difficult for the mom as she had just been released from the hospital and (was in a back and neck brace) we all sat at their feet and prayed for them that God would walk with them through these dark days. We also thanked them for allowing their daughter to come into YWAM and change our lives and the lives of many others.
The leader of the DTS told them how much their daughter loved the parents and prayed for them that they would know the love of God. It was powerful and God was there in the Buddhist temple. The parents said that they had seen the love of Tuy in the many expressions from these students. There were many tears as Tuy had touched many lives.
After spending time with her family, Tuy wanted to go down to Southern Thailand and help Thai young people that were affected by the Tsunami. Pikul shared how Tuy had impacted the lives of hundreds of young Thais throughout Thailand. She also thanked the parents for releasing their daughter to serve the poor in Thailand.
I also had the opportunity to share some scripture and some stories of how Tuy had touched our lives. She was one of the Thai traditional dancers at our recent Asia Pacific staff conference leading in worship to God through Thai cultural expression. I thanked the parents and sisters for allowing Tuy the opportunity to serve in YWAM and to serve the poor in Thailand.
Our lives have been changed forever. We all know that Tuy is with the Lord and singing a new song and a dancing a new dance but…..for those of us that remain…our hearts are torn….