MESSAGE FROM PASTOR AHN:
In his article, ‘Do you lead leaders or lead followers?’, Ron Edmondson says that there are those who are willing to lead leaders and those who will only lead followers. The article was written for pastors, but I believe it can be applied to church leaders and to all congregation members for all church members have been called by God to witness Christ Jesus and to build up the body of Christ.
In that regard, I agree with a preacher who said church is a warship, not a cruise ship. In a cruise ship, only few crew members work for passengers, yet all passengers take rest or enjoy the cruise. In a warship, however, everyone on board has received some important assignments to do. Their roles and level of difficulties are different, but everyone should be responsible for their work to be ready for any difficult situations and for gaining a victory.
The Bible tells us that there are many ministries like there are many parts in a body: preachers, teachers, exhorters, apostles, evangelists, etc. One amazing thing is that they are all closely connected and we cannot thing one without the other because they belong to one body, one spirit, and one Lord.
I have been praying for the growth of our church not only in numbers or finance, but also in spiritual depth and genuine love for others. One of the most important missions of church is making disciples who participate in the Lord’s ministry with positive and proactive attitude. I hope all church members become the leaders of leaders with inspiration and commitment.
We know that Jesus could have done all things by himself, yet he nurtured his disciples to be leaders. He made them to be ready to witness the good news and it became an awesome tradition in all churches.
Someone said that any success without successor is failure. Let us be diligent in searching for the Lord’s vision for our church and let us commit ourselves to please the Lord through our church in 2017!
Joy and hope in Christ,
Pastoral Letter for December 2016
There are many reasons why Christmas story is exciting and even dramatic. I believe one of the reasons would be it happened at unexpected time and to unexpected people. As you may know, there had been 400 years of spiritual darkness for the Israelite people before Jesus was born without coming of any prophet.
First, the Israelite people were in deep despair and confusion after the last prophet in the Old Testament Prophet Malachi. Only few people kept and believed the faithfulness of God in his promise and the Lord showed his love and grace when Jesus was born at unexpected time.
Second, the good news of Christ’s birth happened and was given to the people of the low and poor people. The first witnesses were not religious leaders in the temple and political leaders in the palace. They were not deep in knowledge and they were not recognized in their society. Yet they had pure spirit in the Lord and deep trust on the promise of God in patience. Isn’t it exciting?
I believe it is the same today that the Lord constantly searches for the hearts of the people who have the true joy and gratitude from the unity only with Christ Jesus. Jesus Christ claimed himself as the Bread of Life and whoever eats this Bread will never be thirsty or hungry.
In this special season, we may want various things from others. It is beautiful for us to share our love and appreciation with one another. However, the most important and precious gift that we need to desire is Christ Jesus who created us and loves us, so he came into the world to save us in grace and to show us his love in humility. Let us make a special room in our hearts, so the New Born King Christ Jesus comes in and stays with us today and always!
In his peace,
We usually have grateful heart to God when things are going well or good things are happened in our life. It is good and right thing to do, yet the Bible tells us that we must be thankful in all circumstances even when we are in difficult or painful situation. I believe there are some important reasons why.
First, giving thanks is not conditional, but it is relational. We believe God is always with us and God helps us in the time of need. With this conviction, we can trust the goodness and faithfulness of God as it is written in Romans 8:28a: “We know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him.” I believe our thanksgiving always leads us into a more deeper and close relationship with God.
Second, we may find some positive opportunities in the midst of hardship when we are thankful to God. We can learn this from the apostle Paul’s life when he was put in jail. He took his imprisonment as an opportunity to witness the gospel of Jesus to the fellow prisoners and guards. In Philippians 1:12-13, Paul expresses his joy and gratitude in the prison: “Brothers and sisters, here is what I want you to know. What has happened to me has really helped to spread the good news. One thing has become clear. I am being held by chains because of my stand for Christ. All of the palace guards and everyone else know it”.
In this season of Thanksgiving, I believe we are searching for good reason to be thankful. I hope you find many. I wonder whether you can give thanks to God for the hardship, brokenness, and mistakes that you have experienced this year. May the Lord of blessing lead you into a deeper thanksgiving! Amen.