Eugene Cho

a vision many years ago about a quest…

Over 10 years ago, God woke me up in my sleep. Literally.

The dream shook me up so much that I couldn’t go back to sleep. Over the next several months, I tried to resist the meaning of the dream but I knew that while I didn’t have full clarity, the Holy Spirit was stirring my wife and I to “get ready.”

The vision and dream I had was surreal because it was unlike anything I had personally seen or experienced. Minhee and I were then at a homogenous Korean-American church in the suburbs of Seattle but we were stirred to leave our comfort zone to plant a church in urban Seattle and invite people from diverse backgrounds to worship Jesus together, grow together, serve together, and be on mission together.

The calling for us was to be faithful in proclaiming and living out the gospel of Christ but in pursuit of a diverse church, it wasn’t merely to be post-racial, politically correct, or multiethnic, but in reality, to be about a faith community taking a step closer towards the vision and reality of the Kingdom of God.

The end goal isn’t the banner of a post-racialized world or even to have a multiethnic community. This post isn’t to boast or to indirectly point the finger at homogenous churches, white churches, suburban churches but rather to ask the question:

Are we taking steps towards the vision and reality of the Kingdom of God?

I specifically remember a glimpse of this vision where I was preaching in front of hundreds of people – but everyone looked different and yet, bound together in community by grace, love, and faith in Christ. We were to be on a “quest” together: loving mercy, seeking justice, and walking humbly. The video that we showed [RSS readers: click here] and our anniversary service this past Sunday reminded me of that dream again.

  • Quest is so far from a perfect church. You can just ask my critics and they’ll be quick to tell you.
  • Quest is not a well known church.
  • Quest is not a mega church.
  • Quest is not on any lists of influential, fastest growing, trend setting, or any other lists that are compiled out there.

Having said that, there’s nothing unique or special about Quest. What we are is very simple: a church.

And more specifically, 

We aspire to be the church.

…a community of people living out faith in Christ with hope, beauty, and courage.

More simply, while “our” story is unique, we do not exist on an island to ourselves but rather, we are woven together with others – past, present, and future – to a greater Story.

And because we are comprised of fallen and broken people led by a fallen and broken pastor, we are an imperfect church and we are often reminded of our brokenness but nevertheless, I have witnessed – again and again (and again) – God’s grace and sufficiency. This past Sunday, I shared some of the amazing “chapters” of our church and each chapter points to God’s faithfulness embodied in a community of people on a mission.

I am no churchplanting guru but over the years, I’ve come to realize that the work of God – while it can be done “strategically” or “organically” ….

never happens out of chaos.

There must be purpose, intention, and as I often like to say, “a trajectory.” Over the next couple weeks, I’m looking forward to sharing a few posts about the significant intentions of planting our church.

I’ve also come to realize that no one voice or one church expresses the totality of God. Such a declaration would be blasphemous. Quest is simple one response…one expression…to God’s larger narrative of resurrection, redemption, and reconciliation.

I do not know if I’ll be around when Quest celebrates 20 years. But this past Sunday, as I do today, and as I will this upcoming Sunday, I praise God for giving my wife and I the great privilege and joy of planting this church and being a part of this community (see video above).

All glory to God.

Here are some pics from our 10 Year Anniversary celebration [courtesy of Leo Chen Photography]:

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14 Responses

  1. Cristina says:

    Congratulations Quest!

  2. Congrats on 10 year’s. I hope our little church can head in a similar trajectory here in downtown LA. Keep following the Spirit.

  3. kara says:

    Tears in my eyes and a stirring in my heart…. To see my face in a picture celebrating Quest’s 10 years. Thanks for showing me faces of people that I loved, for teaching me about community and the Body of Christ. I still miss you guys and consider you part of my church family. Anytime you are in the south give me a shout! and please pass along a hello to Minhee, Jin, George,
    Joanie and anyone I didn’t see on my computer screen. Many thanks for following The Call,
    Kara

  4. Al Doyle says:

    Congratulations on your first ten years from what (God willing) will be a future Questor from Bainbridge Island!

  5. Wayne Park says:

    As a displaced Quester in some measure, I celebrate with you guys this tremendous milestone. It has been exciting to be part of, inspired by, and influenced through the ministry of Quest and Eugene & Minhee Cho. Here’s to another ten of fruitful ministry, and continued friendship!

  6. Bianca says:

    Congrats on ten years! You’re an inspiration and I’m excited to see where the next ten years leafs you.

  7. accord1 says:

    One thing I love about our God is that he is a “Why not?” kind of God because He promises that if we delight in him also then he will give us the desires of our hearts. Congratulations for you stepping out into the realm of the “Why not?” You have stepped right into the will of God!

    http://accord1.wordpress.com/

  8. Jason says:

    Congratulations on ten years. May God continue to grow and bless Quest.

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One Day’s Wages

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Thank you, Brooklyn, for the reminder. Umm, @jlin7 is a Christian but he wasn't very Christlike with me on the basketball court. He muscled me into the paint, dunked on me, mentioned my momma, and then said, "Stick with preaching." Just kidding. Kind of.

If you haven't heard, Jeremy Lin is donating his one games wages (approximately $140,000) and an additional $100 for every 3 pointer made to support Girls' Empowerment and Education through @onedayswages. That game is this Friday vs the Boston Celtics!

Join his campaign as he's inviting his fans to donate just $7. - http://onedayswages.org/jlin

Did you know that 32 million girls of lower secondary school age are not enrolled in school.

Did you know that every year of secondary school increases a girl’s future earning power by 20 percent.

Did you know that if all girls in Sub-Saharan Africa, South and West Asia had a secondary education, child marriage would fall by 64 percent.

We can't change the entire world but we can impact the lives of one, few, and in some cases...many.

#jeremylin #jlin #linsanity #onedayswages Don't be held captive to either praise or criticism.

Know who you are.
Know what you're about.
Know WHO you serve.

The answer to who you serve makes all the difference... It's the day after International Women's Day - and it's still important to celebrate the contribution of women in our lives, society, and world. As we honor women all around the world, I'm also reminded of how women and children are those who are most deeply impacted by injustice - especially poverty.

Sadly, I have witnessed this reality in too many places. ​In 2012, I traveled to a remote area in Eastern Kenya as part of a @onedayswages response to a famine that struck the Horn of Africa region. This famine impacted nearly 13 million people and according to some sources, took the lives of about 250,000 people. During my trip there, I had the chance of meeting many people but the person that still remains in my memory was a Muslim woman named Sahara.

She was so hospitable in inviting us to her small and temporary home. During our conversation, I learned that ​Sahara traveled 300 kilometers (a little under 200 miles) – some by cart and some by foot – as they sought to escape the worst drought that has impacted East Africa (Kenya, Somalia, and Ethiopia) in the past 60 years.

This is not a misprint.
200.

She traveled about 200 miles on cart and foot. ​And all along, she was ill. If you look closely ​at the photo, you might notice the large lump in her throat - likely a large cancerous tumor.​ She did not travel alone. She traveled with her husband who I was not able to meet because he was staying with one of his five other wives in this polygamist community.  She did not travel alone. She also traveled with her six children – the youngest being about 1 and the oldest being around 8. She had just given birth to her sixth child when they began her journey. Her youngest was severely malnourished when they arrived to this new settlement in a town called Benane. 
Sahara and her children all survived this journey. They survived because she persisted. 
In honor of Sahara...and so many other women who keep...keeping on. I have to remind myself of this every day...because I can forget every day:

Don't be lazy and make assumptions about people. Ask about their story. Then listen. Be humble. Be teachable. Be human. Be a good neighbor. It's a sad reality but our society runs on the currency of fear. Don't feed into this frenzy.

Rather, invest in faith, hope, and love.

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