Eugene Cho

the courage to go for it

As an introvert and someone who has struggled with “shyness” for a good chunk of my life, I can’t tell you how proud I am of all of our kids.

Our kids are naturally timid and shy. At times, it’s difficult to see since it brings up memories of my personal struggles and confidence – particularly as I immigrated to this country at age 6 only equipped with three English words: Hello, Bye, and Thank-You (or “Sank you”).  I was even voted the “shyest person” in 6th grade.

But, I suppose this is all part of the process of “finding” oneself and maturation. While our kids are still young (13, 10, and 8), it’s been beautiful to see them emerge in courage and confidence.

I’m especially thankful that as they wrestle with identity and personality, they are finding the courage to:

  • Speak up and voice their opinions
  • Pursue their passions
  • Try new things and adventures

Speaking of trying new things, our son, Jedi  – our youngest child – came home recently to share that he had decided to run for School Council.

And with that, he launched “his campaign” by making his poster and prepared this speech below:

” I am running for a student council, because I’m in 3rd grade. I believe that 3rd grade is special because you are in the middle of elementary school.

My goal is to do new things in 3rd grade. So I am doing student council. And I want to help you with your needs. And I know you and me will change throughout the year. That is why you should vote for me.

And “May the force be with you!'”

And…he won. Got the most votes in his class but who’s counting. 😉

  • Am I happy that he won? Of course.
  • Is he happy that he won? Of course.

But honestly, it’s not about the “victory.” It’s the fact that he wanted to try and went for it.

We all need that kind of courage.

 

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11 Responses

  1. Joey McGee says:

    This is awesome! Thanks for the encouragement and reminder!

  2. katey says:

    I ran our student store in third grade through student council. On my first day, I was so nervous I could barely give people the right change for their $.09 cent eraser tops and $.15 pencils. the force is definitely with your sweet Jedi.

  3. YJK says:

    Where IS that “love” button!!! 🙂 Totally relate as someone who fights being an introvert to this day. May the force be fierce! Go Jedi! (Awesome name, btw).

  4. jddoug17 says:

    Love that Jedi stepped out of the circle that so easily constrains and contains us. Just wrote a blog along these lines today.

  5. Jason says:

    What a cool kid…love the poster…bonus for naming you child Jedi…my wife would never let me get away with it.

  6. Tony says:

    I can’t get over the fact that your wife let you name your son Jedi. My wife wouldn’t let me name mine John Calvin… I had to go with just Calvin.

  7. Angela says:

    Good work, Jedi! As Student Council Advisor that is the first “May the Force Be With You” Campaign I’ve heard of. Totally beats guaranteeing pop machines in the lunchroom (never gonna happen…)

  8. Irene (Eunhae) says:

    I’m also an introvert and shy person, and I am currently a freshman in college. It’s been hard trying to come out of my shell, but reading this has given me courage to be myself. Gam sa ham ni da! ^^

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One Day’s Wages

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In our culture, we can be so obsessed with the "spectacular" or "glamorous." The Church often engagws in thia language and paradigm...but what if God has called many of us to small, ordinary things?

Will we still be faithful?
Will we still go about such things with great love and joy?

I recently came across this picture taken by @mattylew, one of our church staff...and I started tearing up: This is my mother; in her 70s; with realities of some disabilities that make it difficult for her to stand up and sit down...but here she is on her knees and prostate in prayer. She doesn't have any social media accounts, barely knows how to use her smartphone, doesn't have a platform, hasn't written a book, doesn't have any titles in our church, isn't listed as a leader or an expert or a consultant or a guru. But she simply seeks to do her best - by God's grace - to be faithful to God. She prays for hours every day inteceding for our family, our church, and the larger world.

Even if we're not noticed or celebrated or elevated...let's be faithful. Our greatest calling as followers of Christ is to be faithful. Not spectacular. Not glamorous. Not popular. Not relevant. And not even successful in the eyes of the world.

Be faithful. Amen. #notetoself (and maybe helpful for someone else)

At times, we have to say ‘NO’ to good things to say ‘YES’ to the most important things.

We can't do it all.
Pray and choose wisely.
Then invest deeply. May our compassion not just be limited to the West or to those that look like us. Lifting up the people of Iraq, Iran, and Kurdistan in prayer after the 7.3 earthquake - including the many new friends I met on a recent trip to Iraq.

The death toll rises to over 400 and over 7,000 injured in multiple cities and hundreds of villages along the Western border with Iraq.

Lord, in your mercy... We are reminded again and again...that we are Resurrection People living in a Dark Friday world.

It's been a tough, emotional, and painful week - especially as we lament the horrible tragedy of the church shootings at Sutherland Springs. In the midst of this lament, I've been carried by the hope, beauty, and promise of our baptisms last Sunday and the raw and honest testimonies of God's mercy, love, and grace.

Indeed, God is not yet done. May we take heart for Christ has overcome the world. "Without genuine relationships with the poor, we rob them of their dignity and they become mere projects. And God did not intend for anyone to become our projects." Grateful this quote from my book, Overrated, is resonating with so many folks - individuals and  NGOs. / design by @preemptivelove .
May we keep working 
on ourselves 
even as we seek 
to change the world. 
To be about the latter 
without the former 
is the great temptation 
of our times.

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