Eugene Cho

In prison or in freedom, the good news is that God has not abandoned us. Christ is with us…

Over two years ago on November 3, 2012, we heard about Kenneth Bae’s arrest in North Korea.

140120072310-new-day-lkl-hancock-kenneth-bae-speaks-00001714-story-top

Over a year ago on August 10, 2013, we held a special prayer vigil for Kenneth Bae and his family.

2021587226

2021587160

Two weeks ago, we marked his two-year anniversary in North Korea and prayed for his liberation from captivity. His sister, Terri, shared some specific prayer requests and conveyed that it would take a miracle.

IMG_20141108_111640

Last Sunday, we celebrated the news of his freedom and safe arrival in Seattle to be reunited with his family. There’s something special about family reunions.

IMG_20141109_150230

Today, we had the joy of having Kenneth and his family worship with us at Quest Church. 10309029_301464550043658_4909089910111236367_n

While this was the first Sunday ever that Kenneth had worshipped with Quest and I’m not his pastor, it was a privilege to come alongside their family during these past two years. He took a few minutes to express his gratitude for support and prayers and to remind us that He never felt alone…never felt abandoned by God.

This is the good news we must share.

As followers of Jesus, the good news is that whether in life or in death, in our mountaintops and valleys, in labor camp or in freedom…we are not alone. Christ is with us. This is not to suggest that our journey through pain, death, or valleys are pleasant. Hardly at all. But to simply convey that God is greater than our circumstances.

For the time being, Kenneth and his family have decided not to do any further interviews but rather to embrace this season of rest, family, and reflection…

But there will come a time when he’ll share his story. I had a meal with him and his family this past week…and it was a true encouragement to hear some of these stories. Rather than anger or bitterness, he has chosen the Christ of hope, love, and reconciliation.

But this isn’t my story to tell but it will happen some day and it will deeply encourage the wider global Church…

My words for Kenneth were very simple:

“Thank you for remaining faithful.”

[photo credits: 1) AP 2) Seattle Times 3) Seattle Times 4) Quest Church 5) Derek Sciba 6) Quest Church]

Filed under:

5 Responses

  1. Thank you Eugene. I appreciate you bringing this part of his story, and God’s story to the table.

    God is good indeed! Praying for His continued mercy and grace all the days of our lives. May we always give God the glory as Kenneth has done here.

    Your Brother in Christ,

    JUSTIN STONE

  2. missyscud says:

    God is good all the time.
    All the time God is good.
    Even in the deepest pain, He is there and with us.

  3. djchuang says:

    #hallelujah – praise to God for this, it’s a good Thanksgiving. Perseverance all around..

  4. […] drawing as much attention to themselves as possible. Instead, Eugene has been busy praying for a recently released prisoner and caring for a family battling childhood […]

  5. Stanley says:

    Just wish to say your article is as astonishing.
    The clearness in your post is just cool and i could assume you are an expert on this subject.

    Fine with your permission let me to grab your feed to keep
    updated with forthcoming post. Thanks a million and please carry on the gratifying
    work.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

stuff, connect, info

One Day’s Wages

My Instagram

Window seat. For the win. As leaders, we must not see ministry and family as competing commitments.  We must not sacrifice our marriage and kids for the sake of "ministry." How can we? Loving our families IS ministry & good leadership.

And on a side note, we took this goofy photo for Mother's Day last Sunday at @seattlequest. I was shocked! What in the world happened to our kids? Our 13 year old son blocked four of my shots on the basketball court yesterday. He's since been grounded... I fear that we ask God to move mountains, forgetting that God also wants to move us.

In fact, it's possible that we are that mountain. Time flies. The eldest is wrapping up her 1st year in college and the college tours have begun for the 2nd child. The youngest enters high school in the Fall. Can't say enough about how proud Minhee and I are of the kids - not just of their accomplishments but the people they are and are becoming.

But...man...we can't wait to party it up when we're emptynesters. Party at our house. It's going to be epic. Humbled. Grateful. Mindful of God's grace and faithfulness in my life. It's all grace... It's an unexpected honor to be invited back - even with some mini-drama - to @princetonseminary to receive the 2017 Distinguished Alumni Award - exactly 25 years after starting my journey there as a student in 1992. Wow.

Princeton isn't necessarily for everyone. And to say that I loved everything about my experience would be misleading but it was very formative. Ir challenged me to examine why I believed in what I believed. It reminded me that God could handle my questions. It prepared me for a post-Christian context where I am not entitled to be heard but I had to earn the right to be heard, and of course, it taught me that all is good with a Philly cheese steak at Hoagie Haven.

No one is an island to themselves and I am certainly an example of that. Many people - women and men, young and old, and of many backgrounds - prayed, encouraged, mentored, and loved me along the way. Grateful for my professors at seminary, my many classmates, and the numerous fellow staff and co-laborers I've had the privilege of serving Christ with past and present. And of course, I'm forever inspired by my parents, my children, and my wife, Minhee. Thank you for your faith, hope, and love...and oh, for your patience. Only your family will know and see both the best and worst of you. They've seen my worst...and keep on believing in me.

Thank you again, PTS and President Barnes, for this honor. Then, today, and tomorrow...by God's grace, just striving to be faithful to my Lord and Savior...to preach and live out the convictions of the whole Gospel. Amen. So humbled and grateful to be with @catalystleader in Cincinnati to encourage leaders from all around the country about the invitation to Uncommon Fellowship.

Preached from John 4. We can talk, preach, sing, philsophize, liturgize, and spit rhymes about Samaria...but we still have to talk through Samaria.

my tweets

  • Heartbroken. Praying for Manchester & the UK. For those mourning loved ones. For those injured and fighting for life. Lord, in your mercy. || 10 hours ago
  • Window seat. For the win. https://t.co/yG66Sm2bvu || 2 days ago
  • As leaders, we must not sacrifice our family for the sake of ministry because loving our family IS good leadership: instagram.com/p/BUVAGVwg-5z/ || 2 days ago
  • We long for a Gospel that comforts but resist the Gospel that disrupts. Having the former without the latter seduces us into complacency. || 2 days ago
  • Love wins in the end but in the meanwhile,it fights for things that matter. Love isn't sentimental. It's both gentle & fierce. Love endures. || 3 days ago
  • This is what we love to do. Empowering local, indigenous leaders to serve their own communities. Thanks for your su… twitter.com/i/web/status/8… || 3 days ago