Testimony at Gideon’s Convention, Orange, 24 April 2016

I used to be an army officer in the Defence Force of South Korea for two years since 1983. One day I picked up a piece of paper at the army campus near DMZ of North Korean border, assuming that it was one of the political propaganda flown from North Korea. Before I destroyed it, I happened to read it and discovered it was not a piece of propaganda but some words from the Bible. I don’t remember exactly word by word what was written on the piece of paper. But I do remember that it was about “eternal life”. The two words “eternal life” did not go away from my mind for a few hours and made me think of my own life. Then I began to feel something which I had never felt before. I felt that I had some kind of life inside me. I came to know that my flesh and bones were not my life but only a container that held my life. That life which I felt that I had was the eternal life. By reading and pondering over the word of God, I came to have the eternal life. It was a strong conversion experience. The next morning I got up from my bed and came out of my residence and saw the sky and the earth. And I knew I was in a new heaven and the ground where I put my feet was a new earth. My unquenchable thirst for alcohol disappeared instantly at that conversion moment. I was born from above.

I knew the second lieutenant Kwon (my junior officer in the same army) had been praying for me for a long time before I had that conversion experience. He was trilled when he found out what God has done for me and began to spend time with me regularly reading his bible and teaching me Christians songs. I felt that I also needed a bible to read. And I remembered that I had a little blue bible on the bookshelf of my study room at my home. My home was long distance away from the DMZ zone. Anyway the bible which I had on my bookshelf was Gideon’s Bible and I had never read it until then. But it was what I needed urgently and desperately. So I wrote a letter to my mother asking her to send it to me by registered express mail. When I got it, It became my precious and closest friend since then. I grew on the word of God day by day.

Many years (perhaps 12 years or so) have gone passed since then. I came to Australia and became an ordained minister of the Uniting Church in Narromine, NSW. I had gone through the process of becoming a church minister within the Uniting Church denomination. I was considered to be a good student and the lecturers gave me a lot of theological books to read as assignment readings. Most of the books were those written by “so called” well-known liberal theologians of modern western countries. I became a minister of liberal theological mind, not believing every word of the Bible as God’s words. I always studied hard with my commentary books on the passages of the Bible before I brought my sermons to my congregation. The Bible became a hard subject that needs to be interpreted with much study, rather than much prayers.

One day I was invited to a Gideon’s dinner at Dubbo, NSW, where I share my testimony of my very first Bible in the army. It was one of Gideon’s bibles, I said. Then I looked around the people gathered at the Gideon’s dinner night as well as many little pocket Bibles stacked up on the tables for distribution. Then I found myself thinking, “Gee, who could understand those difficult ancient books?” While I was thinking this way, something hit my spiritual cord inside of me and I thought again, “what am I thinking about? Those books are the same as my first bible and I read it over and over again when I got saved and I enjoyed reading it”

Then, I realised that somehow I had been drifted a long way from my first love for the Word of the Lord. I knew I was very sick spiritually, I mean I needed healing in my spirit. The Gideon community and their faithful work of distributing the pocket bibles inspired me to see my spiritual condition.

It took a while for me to recover my first love for God’s words. Since then, I have been enjoying reading my bible with innocent pure heart, relying on the guide of the Holy Spirit. And I know it’s not much information and heaps of biblical knowledges which people need in order to understand God’s words. But, it is by prayer and faith, anyone can hear God’s voice through the readings of the Bible. We are reading three chapters of the Bible during the morning prayer time in the Orange Prayer House these days. And we hear God speaking to us even today. I thank God for Gideon’s faithful ministry of providing Bibles to all people who need Jesus.

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From the Centre of Australia, September 2013

“Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. (1 Corinthians 13:4-7 NKJV)

During the last two weeks, I was traveling around the centre of Australia with the Elijah Ride team and then have been worshipping God and having fellowship with my fellow spiritual leaders of this nation and those of Korean churches at the national gathering of the Crosslink Christian Network.  I came back home last Thursday night and tried to summarize the many revelations I got during those two weeks.  Suddenly I felt a strong conviction like the immovable Rock of Uluru, that the oneness of all believers (John 17) is definitely will happen as the sign of Jesus’ return. That was what Jesus prayed because He had the father heart of love for all His children. It is the Spirit of loving God, which will prevail over the spirit of judgmental religions in the last days.  Apostle Paul said in 1 Corinthians 13, “Love never fails. But whether there are prophecies, they will fail; whether there are tongues, they will cease; whether there is knowledge, it will vanish away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part. But when that which is perfect has come, then that which is in part will be done away.”  The time comes when the partial spiritual experiences, the partial knowledges and the partial revelations (which had divided the church so much) will be done away and be replaced by the PERFECT love of the Father.  The perfect love of the Spirit of the Father heart will come and make all believers one.  Then the Spirit and the Bride (the Church) will be in one heart, saying “Come Lord Jesus, come!” We will see no envy, no pride, no rude behaviors, no iniquities, no hatred and no unforgiving.  Then we will rejoice with the Truth, which is the loving and life giving words coming out of the Father’s mouth. We will bear all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.  I am waiting for this day.  I will live my life toward this Day of the Lord.  I pray that this certain future may lead my life and death and also yours, my precious friends.

I will be in Jordan, Israel and Korea during the next three weeks.  I just want to share my little report of our travel to the centre of Australia.  You can see it on YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4GRWNuDclSo

Witnessing

Oodnadatta and Indulkna, SA, Saturday 31 August 2013

And the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it. There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. This man came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all through him might believe. (John 1:5-7, NKJV)

The Light has been there in this world.  The darkness could never extinguish it or comprehend it.  This Light has been the true life, reviving the souls of God’s people in the world.  What if John did not testify to this Light?  Could the people get it without John’s witnessing?   I don’t know the answer.  And yet, the fact was that many people (even if not all the people) were definitely helped by John’s testimony to get to this light, that revived their souls.  God wants to use human witnessing to help His people to get this Light, the living Word of God.

What the people really need in the outback country is the living Word of God, which revives their souls, heals their wounds, and restores their true identity.  When they know that they are truly beloved children of God and belong to the Kingdom of God, they would know that they are not aliens of this country, but the first care takers of this great land of Holy Spirit.  They have the right and authority to embrace and forgive the late comers, the recent European or Asian or African migrants.   It is not the government organisations or institutional churches but the people who have seen the Light, that can witness to the Light and therefore help restoring God’s people in the wilderness.

The team members of the Elijah Ride are made of infants, children, teenagers, men and women from different backgrounds.  Yet they have the same desire.  That is to witness to the true Light, that revives the souls of God’s people in the wilderness of this country. They have moved from one community to the other since they started their journey in Davenport Aboriginal Reserve, Port Augusta.  The people of the communities embraced them, as if they have been waiting for the team and their message of God’s kingdom.  They had fellowship with the team and invited into their lives.  The Elijah Ride is about relationships: Restoring relationship with our Loving Father in heaven, building relationship with God’s people isolated in remote country towns of Australia.

The team will get to Alice Springs next week.  I will take three Korean young worshippers next Wednesday and will worship our heavenly Father together.  The team will stay there for a few weeks, witnessing to the Light through fellowshipping with the people there.  We are in need of your on-going prayer supports!

Elijah Ride II has begun

8-8-2013 at Port Augusta, SA

“The wilderness and the wasteland shall be glad for them, and the desert shall rejoice and blossom as the rose… (Isaiah  35:1, NKJV)

Awaiting is not a wasting. While 12 members of preparation team were waiting for the main body of the Elijah Ride at Port Augusta from Monday 29th of July, we met with a devout Christian lady Lavene, the council CEO of Davenport Community.  God opened her heart by the Holy Spirit and therefore she poured out favour upon the preparation team of the Elijah Ride.  She officially welcomed us and allowed us to use the community hall for two successive evenings free of charge. We were able to invite the whole aboriginal community of Davenport to YWAM’s ministry and  BBQ party.  There we met an amazing man of God, called Ken.  He sang a song: “Wait a little longer, then we will see him coming back” .  He had been waiting for the return of Christ and a breakout of the spiritual revival in the outback community.  A lady called Jean Reid gave away several pieces of her own precious aboriginal paintings to the Korean visitors.  Finally on Saturday 3rd of August 2013, we were able to put up the Tent of David in Port Augusta.

On the same day afternoon,  we were invited by the organisers of Port Augusta’s Warfland Show to perform the Korean traditional dances. Our YWAMers prayed for Australia with their dances and sounds of Korean traditional musical instruments.  They also preached the gospel of Jesus’ love and forgiveness with a YWAM drama. Pastor Glen spoke about the Elijah Ride . I myself spoke about the importance of prayer for the spiritual revival of Australia.

We had our first worship at the Tent on that same Saturday night.  Still more team members and the horses were to arrive there yet. But we had the sound system and worship team ready to start. So we prayed and worshipped God there in the tent.  Several aboriginal people from Davenport Community joined us in our worship.

I had to drive back home on the next day.  But Pastor Glen in Port Augusta rang me up later and informed me that an aboriginal man and a woman gave their hearts to Christ during their worship meeting in the community hall.  God is moving and in the business of saving His people.  But I know somebody has to be there to be used as a channel of God’s life. I pray that the team of Elijah Ride may become such a channel of God’s love.

Daesop