Eugene Cho

i messed up today…

It’s 12:36am right now.

I’m doing a little work and getting ready to hit the sack but also taking some time to reflect on the past day. It wasn’t one of my better days…

Today, I messed up.

As much as I don’t want to admit it, I sucked as a father today. Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: family

how the spelling bee made me afraid of death

spellingbee

In honer of the 2008 2009 2010 Scripps National Spelling Bee witch is going on wright now [June 2-4] in Washington DC, I give you two heelarious videose.

How did this simple contest that began in 1925 turn out to be a global phenomenon?  Just check out the TV coverage on the event including live prime time coverage on ABC and ESPN.

Truthe be told, I’m a goode speler myselfe.  Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: entertainment, family, , ,

best parenting advice

This is the most hilarious and visual parenting advice for you new parents.

For the first year of our new church, the only children were our two daughters [then 2-years-old and 1 month].  We’ve since been privileged with another kid [son] but the early years were difficult for our children because they really didn’t have anyone to hang out with at church.  I still remember preaching with my baby daughter on my back during the early months.

The children’s ministry has since grown immensely as we average about 70 infants and children spread between the 9.15am and 11am services [no children’s ministry at the 5pm].  Since the beginning of the year, we’ve had numerous births with more babies coming.  So, I thought it would be pastorally wise to give these new and expectant parents [and blog visitors] some heartfelt parenting advice.

View these visual instructions carefully: Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: entertainment, family, , ,

12 years and counting

anniversary2

On February 1, 1997, Minhee and I exchanged vows and committed ourselves to Christ, one another, our family and community –  the journey of loving, serving, and growing as husband and wife.  Today, we celebrate our 12th anniversary.  I know that it is customary [and wise] to speak well of your spouse on your anniversary but Minhee truly is an expression and embodiment of God’s grace and beauty to my life. Our marriage – while clearly not perfect – remains focused on the three pillars I often share with others:  Passion.  Vision.  Mission. [another blogpost]

We met in Korea and dated for a week before I returned to the States. We engaged in many phone calls and probably exchanged over a thousand letters since we both weren’t using this technology called ‘electronic mail.’  

And while people boast of their marriage proposal stories, I’m pretty sure mine is the most romantic and unique:  

The summer before our wedding [while I was still a student in seminary in New Jersey], I put on my best suit, got on my knees, picked up the phone to call Minhee in Korea, and in my best Korean drama voice…asked her to marry me.:)

Here’s our wedding photo that still continues to amaze people. Minhee looks her usual photogenic self and I’ve been told I look “very different.” Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: family,

happy new year!

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I want to take this opportunity to wish all of my friends, family, church community, blog readers, and the larger community a very Happy New Year!

As some of you know, today [Monday, January 26] is the celebration of the Lunar New Year.  As we begin Year 4707 today  – the Year of the Ox, Minhee and I extend heartfelt blessings to you and yours not simply so that we languish in our own blessedness but are compelled to live lives of blessing unto others and the glory of Christ.

Lunar New Year isn’t just Chinese New Year.  Many of the Asian nations including Korea Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: family, , , , ,

middle school!?!

Yesterday, Minhee and I took our oldest daughter for a tour of our local middle school in preparation for the inevitable…she’s growing up. She’s now 10 years old, asks adultish questions, and will be entering middle school in the Fall. This might be another reason why I’m going through my extended mid-life reflection right now.

Question:  What was your middle school experience like?

It’s been so long since the middle school years that I forgot what it was like until I toured the school and classes with our daughter yesterday.  There are over Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: family

humbled by seattle’s snowpocalypse and tubing with our kimchee bowl

leochensnow3

leochensnow2

Seriously, when I made my “Farewell Video” last week mocking Seattlites’ winter ineptitude and “the world is ending” local news, I really had no idea what we had in store. I’ve braved two memorable winter storms: one in Princeton, New Jersey where it snowed so much we couldn’t open our front door and the other being a Chicago wind/snowstorm that was so cold that it made me cry…literally.

This wasn’t the worst I’ve experienced but let me just say that I’ve been humbled by Seattle’s Snowpocalypse. I’m not making any more sarcastic videos for a while. And I think I can speak for the entire city and while I’m at it, for the entire Western Washington that this has been humbling.

Some humbling stuff: Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: family, travel, , , ,

going to jail for adultery

I’m not sharing this to propagate gossip.  There’s enough of it – both in the secular and sadly, christian community as well.  But, when I read this news of a famous Korean actress and her lover being “sentenced” this morning, it really intrigued me because even after living in Korea for several years as an adult and doing pastoral ministry for couple years in my birthplace referred to some as the Land of the Morning Calm, I had absolutely no idea that adultery was “illegal” and a crime.  I enjoy following Korean films when and IF they’re available here in the States but I don’t follow pop culture in Korea especially since my reading capacity is elementary.

In addition, you know that I’ve been posting thoughts and stories about government, politics, religion, morality and how they all engage together.  Simply, the question I keep coming to is,

“What is the government’s role in legislating morality?”

I vacillate back and forth regarding the government’s role and constantly feel conflicted.  I agree that adultery is “damaging to the social order” in addition to the clear damage to the SOUL.  For the record, I acknowledge that your assessment and/or criticism that I have inconsistent views about the government’s role have weight.  And there are days when I just think we should run everything by LAW all over again.  Why?  Because all of us have such an undeserving and under appreciated entitlement to freedom and grace. 

What do you think of the above and below?  Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: christianity, culture, family, , , , , , , ,

why aren’t we drawn to dong yun yoon?

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As some of you know, I posted the story yesterday about the unfathomable and tragic story of Dong Yun Yoon and his family  [English name: Don Yoon] who were killed when an F/A-18 jet crashed into his home.  Don, 37, was at work at his cafe when he heard the crash.  His wife, two young babies [15 months and 2 months], and his mother-in-law were killed.  Unfathomable.

But throughout the day yesterday, I kept wondering to myself why Don’s tragedy and story wasn’t picked up more by the media and the larger blogosphere – especially the Christian blogosphere.   Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: faith, family, , , ,

dong yun yoon: the man who lost his family in the san diego jet crash

Dong Yun Yoon cries while talking about losing his wife, two daughters, and mother-in law after an F/A-18D fighter jet crashed into his house in the University City neighborhood of San Diego, California December 9, 2008. The victims were identified as Dong Yun Yoon's wife Young M. Yoon, and their daughters 15-month-old Grace and 12-month-old Rachel. Young Yoon's mother, Suk Kim, who was visiting from South Korea also perished in the crash. The family had moved to the neighborhood a month ago. Dong Yun Yoon was at work at the time of the accident.

Part II:  Why aren’ t we drawn to Don Yun Yoon?

The story is brutally painful.  As a husband and father, I can not imagine a more painful thing.  Dong Yun Yoon [English name is Don Yoon], 37, was at work at his cafe when he discovered the horrible news of a F/A-18 jet crashing into a residential home – his home.  His wife, two young babies, and his mother-in-law who had recently arrived from Korea to help take care of the babies [a Korean custom] all were killed in this tragedy.  But in the midst of such deep anguish and pain, Dong Yun Yoon asked people to pray for the surviving pilot of the crashed jet and shared:

“I know he’s one of our treasures, for the country, and I … don’t blame him. I don’t have any hard feelings. I know he did everything he could.”

I listen to the Dong Yun Yoon’s video interview on CNNand couldn’t stop crying.  Regardless who’s involved, it’s an utterly painful tragedy but looking at him is like looking at a familiar face.  As a Korean immigrant myself, his story his familiar.  His voice and broken English is familiar.  His comments and words are familiar.  The people standing around him all are familiar.  In many ways, I feel like he’s my younger brother or cousin.  He was doing what many Korean immigrants do – work their tails off to provide for their family.  He was working at his coffee shop nearby.  Yoon immigrated to the United States in 1989 with his brother and sister while his parents remained in Korea [something all too familiar with many Korean immigrants] all in hopes and pursuit of the great American dream.  Dong Yun later became a U.S. citizen.

He married his wife, Young Mi Yoon [a nurse], four years ago and had two children: Grace [15 months] and Rachel [2 months].   They had just moved into this house one month ago.

“My wife — it was God’s blessing that I met her about four years ago, and we got married,” he said quietly. “She’s just such a lovely wife and mother, who always loves me, and (the) babies. I just miss her so much.” Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: christianity, church, faith, family, , , , , , ,

stuff, connect, info

one day’s wages | video

My Instagram

People often ask, "How does one stand all that rain in Seattle?" Actually, it doesn't rain that much. I like the rain. Keeps everything "evergreen" and clean. Keeps our air fresh. What's challenging is the gray weather. Give me a few more sunny days. 99 more days to be specific. 
Regardless, still love this city. Checking out Canada in case I need to move up North after the presidential election. Just saying, eh.

Downtown Toronto. Fascinating architecture. Amazed by the diversity of this city. We desperately want our children to not just be captivated by the beauty of creation...but more importantly, to the actual Creator of all that is good and beautiful.

Actually, we want and need this truth for our souls, too. What a privilege. This isn't possible without all those who give, pray, and support the work of @onedayswages. This week, I signed and mailed grants to three partner organizations totaling over $170,000. These grants will empower people by supporting maternal health care, refugee relief efforts, access to clean water, provide education, etc.

Sometimes, the brokenness of the world feel so overwhelming but let's keep running the race with endurance. Let's keep pursuing justice, mercy, and humility. Let's be faithful and may we be spurred on to keep working for God's Kingdom...on earth as it is in heaven.

Again, thank you so much for your support for @onedayswages! My wife, Minhee, and I stand on the shoulders of praying mothers. I'd like to take a moment to honor my mother-in-law. It's hard to put words together to embody her life but she is a very special, anointed person. I'm so blessed to have her as a mother in my life.

She was a devoted wife until she lost her husband to cancer, mother to three daughters, and later became a pastor. She became a follower of Christ as an adult and as such, led her her family to Christ. In her late 50s, she obeyed God's calling to go to seminary and be a leader in the church. She graduated #1 in her class and reminded us that it's never too late to follow a new dream or calling.

As she'll soon celebrate her 80th birthday, I'm especially grateful for the ways that she poured into and prayed over Minhee and her other children.  Even though she's officially retired, I'm inspired that the concept of retirement is not in her vocabulary.  She continues to serve the local church, evangelize and bear witness to Christ, and goes to the early morning prayer meeting at 5am everyday to pray for our family, our church, and for others. 
Jangmonim, we love and honor you. 어머니, 사랑합니다.

Someday, I hope that when my kids speak of Minhee and I...above all, they would say with integrity that their parents prayed for them and kept pointing them to Christ. On this Mother's Day, I want to take a few words to honor mother.

There’s a moment from a few years ago that will stick with me until the day I die. It’s regarding Sung Wha, my mother.

Minhee and I were at a point of transition, between working at an ethnic Korean church in the northern suburbs of Seattle called Lynnwood and launching Quest in urban Seattle. As I shared earlier, I was in desperate need of a job. I had a mortgage to pay. A pregnant wife. A kid at home. 
Then, praise God, after months without work, I finally landed a job.

My mom was in between jobs at this point in her life. She was in her late fifties, but she had such bad knees and degenerative hips that it was, and is, difficult for her to walk. My mom is like a human barometer—when a storm is coming and when it rains, her hips throb. Although my parents lived in San Francisco, she was visiting us in Seattle to encourage us in this difficult season.

As I prepared to go to work one early morning, I walked downstairs to put on my jacket and shoes, and forgot that my mother woke up early every morning to pray. In fact, she had been praying for months that I would find a job. “Eugene, where are you going?” she said when she saw me.

I hadn’t told my mother the news that I had just recently been hired for the janitorial gig at Barnes and Noble. I chose not to because I thought she and my father would be devastated. I didn’t want them to think that after laboring, sacrificing, and doing so much for us over all those years that their son had failed them.

But I couldn’t lie to her, so eventually I told my mom that I got a job and was going to work. “Great! What job? What are you doing?” “Um, I’m working at Barnes and Noble as their custodian,” I said finally.

Without asking another question, my mother got up from the dining table where she had been reading her Bible and praying. She slowly walked slowly toward me.

She approached me, then walked past me without saying a word, and I realized she was headed toward the closet. She opened the closet door, put on her jacket, turned around and said to me (in Korean), “Eugene, let’s go together. I will help you.” This is my mother.

my tweets

  • It's been years since Seattle Sonics "became" the OKC Thunder. Still stings. Seattle deserves a team before OKC gets a title. That is all. || 3 hours ago
  • That time when nearly everyone laughed at @KlayThompson when he said he was the best shooting guard in the NBA. || 4 hours ago
  • The best part of wanting to change the world...is being humbled, learning you're not the savior of the world & being changed in the process. || 15 hours ago
  • Cheer up Toronto & Canada. Great season. Also, you have free health care, toonies and your political candidates are not as crazy as America. || 1 day ago
  • Make friendships more than transactions. There's a huge difference between "I appreciate you" and "I appreciate what you can do for me." || 1 day ago
  • There's much to ponder in this article. Much to repent. Much to grieve. "Seattle's vanishing black community." - seattletimes.com/pacific-nw-mag… || 2 days ago

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