on february 1, 1997, at onnuri church in seoul, korea, a woman named minhee jin and i exchanged our vows as husband and wife under God’s covenant of marriage. i was on staff at that church. minhee was attending another church but on staff with a christian organization called duranno ministries. i asked her out during my last week in korea; we had five very intense dates leading to a very long distance relationship. during our wedding ceremony, i butchered the vows which was conducted in korean, my 2nd language. embarrassingly, i mispronounced one syllable in one word during the last sentence of my vow. the result: instead of saying, ‘i covenant my life,’ i said, ‘i will poison you…” that may be the single most embarrassing moment of my life.
10 years, one big fat mortgage, one quasi-churchplant, one churchplant, 3 kids, and many memories later, we celebrated our ten year anniversary yesterday. similar to my lame proposal where i dressed up in my best suit, got on my knees and proposed over the phone, my (our) ten year celebration was a dud.
i was on my way back from chicago; picked up some near dead roses at QFC and arrived home at 7.30pm on our anniversary; wife and kids were all coughing, sneezing, and sick. not the most romantic way to celebrate the day. thankfully, we do have plans to take a week off near the end of this month to rest, reflect, and rejuvenate.
our journey thus far has been wonderful but our marriage isn’t perfect. jokingly, i often share that’s the case because she’s not perfect. but honestly and brutally, what do you expect when two broken and depraved individuals converge together to share in the ultimate expression of ‘life together.’ the answer: combustion and explosion. thank god for GRACE AND MERCY.
and so in that end, i can share that although our marriage hasn’t been perfect, it has been filled with Mercy and Grace. minhee has certainly modeled those things for me. she has exemplified jesus to me and compelled me to reciprocate His image unto her. i admire her for many things but especially for leaving all that was comfortable and meaningful in her life in korea to live life together as my wife and life partner. at the age of 27, she left her family, friends, church, job, homeland, and all things that resonated with her for a new life – culture, country, language – everything. she only knew one person and that was me.
thank you minhee. i love you.