Eugene Cho

celebrating martin luther king, jr…and acknowledging the Giver of such dreams…

mlk

Martin Luther King Jr. was an extraordinary person.  Not perfect but nevertheless, extraordinary.  While we remember his legacy again on this day…let’s not make the mistake of forgetting the God behind this extraordinary man.

It’s way too easy to talk about MLK because so many people and groups of people want to own him as their own.  But they often don’t want to take or acknowledge all of him.  At the core of his life, Martin Luther King Jr. was a follower of Jesus Christ. His faith in Christ informed all that he sought to do as a civil rights leader.

And that is precisely why his dream did not die upon his assassination. Because Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: justice, , ,

Palm Sunday: He’s Jesus. He’s Lord. We’re not. We’re just the donkey (or ass). Remember, it’s not about us.

Palm Sunday.

I’m very fond of this season in the Christian calendar because I can mention the word “ass” during my blog post and sermon and still keep all the fundamentalists off my back.😉

But seriously, the message of Palm Sunday is very significant. True, this fulfills the prophecy of the Old Testament and that’s very significant but there’s more:

The image of Jesus riding on a donkey – aka “an ass” – during Palm Sunday is a great paradox.

In some ways, it’s when things go downhill really fast for Jesus and for anyone and everyone associated with Jesus that had a different agenda about “the Kingdom” than Jesus. Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: christianity, church, Jesus, justice, leadership, ministry, , ,

visionaries are crazy

charitywater2

If you’ve got a crazy idea, please do not dismiss it and please do not dismiss the crazy vision and ideas of others.  Read the whole entry.

Take a few minutes to consider the difference between the concept or difference between a million and a billion. How would you explain that? Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: justice, non-profit, seattle, social media, , ,

double tall vanilla latte and a goat?

Q Cafe

Let’s first get the coffee espresso snob question out of the way:

What’s “your” espresso drink? Or are you a tea person?

In the face of some incredibly shocking statistics about extreme global poverty, it’s easy and understandable to feel paralyzed. I’ve often felt this way but instead of feeling the burden to change the world, just think about making an impact on one person, or one family, or one small village.

As some of you know, I also serve as the executive director of a non-profit community cafe called Q Cafe. I’m joined on the Advisory Board by Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: justice, non-profit, Q Cafe, , , , , , ,

27 million reasons

call-response-banner

There are 27 million reasons why you should give a frack about Human Trafficking. I want to invite you to join us for a special film screening of Call + Response.  And if you’ve seen it, see it again and bring someone along.  If you’ve already seen the film, can you share some of your reflections so that others might be encouraged to watch this film or screen it on their own?

We’re not here to bait and switch, ask for your money, or get you to come to our church or buy more cups of coffee.  We simply want to partner together to love mercy and seek justice.  

Join Quest Church and Q Cafe for a screening of the landmark film on human trafficking in our world. Following the film screening, join us next door at Q Cafe for an advocacy fair with local and global partners in the fight against human trafficking to learn how you can be involved. All profits go to World Concern and Break the Chains/International Justice Mission to support their work against human trafficking.

Human trafficking is considered the third largest industry in the world and despite our advances as a human society, there are more slaves today than any point in human history.  That – folks – is the essence of human depravity.  Tickets are only $5 and all proceeds go to benefit the fight and cause.  Seats are limited so purchase your tix now.  Help us spread the word by sharing this post or share the Facebook Event.

Two articles I want to share with you.  The first is a recent article from the NY Times/blogpost

Anyone who thinks it is hyperbole to describe sex trafficking as slavery should look at the maimed face of a teenage girl, Long Pross. Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: justice, seattle, , , , ,

blind versus discerning submission

photo by cbc.ca

I received this comment last week regarding my supposed slandering of soon to be former President George W. Bush.  The funny thing was I was trying to defend him in that post about an Iraqi journalist throwing a shoe at him.  Okay, I know he’s not the greatest president and many can’t wait to see him out of office but we should give him some props.  Why?  His work and advocacy for Africa was signifcant and secondly, the reality of extremist terrorists is legit and he navigated the country through uncharted territories especially through post 9/11.  But I still don’t support the war in Iraq.

Anyway, read the comment below.  Good thoughts for rumination by the commenter who I don’t know.  I appreciate the respectful tone in which he communicated his concerns.  But honestly, I get very concerned about Christians quoting Scriptures instructing people to “respect our governing authorities and fall in submission to them.”  

Really?  Yes, let’s respect our leaders.  I agree that it’s important but please don’t blindly submit to your leaders.  Please don’t tell this Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: bible, christianity, church, justice, , ,

racism sucks

Racism sucks.  Most of us can agree on that.  The bad news is that many of us are racists.  We just are.  I fear that I may be a racist on some level or another.  It’ll help our conversation dramatically if we can all start from the presumption that we’re all racists in some way.  This way, we don’t have to all be so defensive.  And if we aren’t, we can all agree that we’re all racialized…meaning, we can’t help but see the world and others via the lens of race.

I know that dialogue isn’t sufficient in itself but conversation and knowledge can become foundations to action.  If you’re in the Seattle area, join us for our church’s 4th annual Faith and Race Depth Class.  Register HERE.  I can assure you that you’ll be disappointed by the class but that’s ok.  It’s still good a good discussion to have…

For five weeks in October and November [5 consecutive Mondays beginning Oct. 22] we will be hosting our fourth annual faith and race conference. We hope to learn more about racism in America, deepen our understanding of what it means to call ourselves a “multiethnic church,” and continue the dialog that began in 2003. We will be working through a reader using excerpts from the articles and books below as well as video clips from the Color of Fear documentary. The format will be both small group discussions and lectures led/taught by members of Quest. The charge is $10 to cover the cost of materials. 

By now, many of you have heard about the situation known as Jena 6.  But how many of you have heard about the rape and beating of Megan Williams on September 7, 2007?  Seriously, how many of you knew about this? Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: justice, religion

free burma…


Free Burma!

Less than a year ago, I was crossing a river from Thailand to Burma.  Less than a year ago, I was preaching at a church in a Karen village in Burma.  Less than a year ago, I was playing and laughing with kids in a small village in Burma…Laughing and playing must be strangers to that land right now.  By now, many of you [hopefully] are aware of what’s going on with the anti-government protests in Burma or Myanmar.  The painful reality is that such grave injustices have been going on in Burma for years.  In recent days, the situation has turned for the worse.  The larger global community and governments must hold this regime and those that support the Burma/Myanmar government accountable… Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: justice, , ,

“gracious as all f*#k”

I’m amazed how many people are tracking with the “gay conversation.”  Many folks have emailed asking if Dan Savage has responded to my email.  He said that he would a day or two after he received mine but no response yet.  Let’s not forget…he’s a big shot.  He’s an editor of the popular Stranger and has his own syndicated column that’s published in who knows how many places.  He’s got people to see, places to go, and blah blah blah so I’m not surprised or disappointed.  No biggie.

On the Slog [the Stranger’s blog], he did mention that some of the Slog posters did such a great job responding to my doozies that he didn’t really feel the need to respond.  Truth be told, there really were some incredible comments and dialogue.  Several people have shared with me that they actually printed out ALL the comments, went off somewhere, and just read through them and in some cases, discussed them with friends.  [That’s a lot of wasted paper…]

I feel somewhat obliged to Dan.  He has written, in my opinion, the best press about Quest through his “church review” and indirectly, given me one of the best compliments [I think] I have received.  In responding to my concerns about posting what I intended to be a personal email on the Slog, he apologized for the misunderstanding and wrote [there]:

We’re not in conflict about the misunderstanding. Cho’s not upset with me; the man is gracious as all fuck. Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: emerging church, justice, religion, seattle

caring for the environment

It’s sweltering hot here in Seattle this week.  It’s also hot in many places.  How did Al Gore manipulate the weather to get more support for his cause behind Inconvenient Truth?

When I became a Christian at 18, I never heard anything about the moral dilemma of environmentalism until seminary.  I still wrestle with how to more organically speak of environmentalism and care of God’s creation within the context of a larger framework of ministry.  I’m constantly challenged by individuals at Quest that not only talk the talk but walk the walk.  Individuals that bike regularly to work, go hybrid and biodiesel, compost galore, and even taking steps to utilize solar energy.  Very cool.  I have much to learn.  I’ve always felt like I’ve done my part and even converted my wife who is becoming the recycling Nazi.  She recycles everything…

This leads me to some thoughts about the Live Earth concerts from last weekend.  Anybody watch?  Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: culture, justice

stuff, connect, info

one day’s wages | video

My Instagram

As I soaked in this breathtaking sunrise this morning above the clouds, I felt compelled to pray for so my places in America and around the world that are experiencing such pain, heartache, injustice, and violence. At times, it feels so overwhelming but in prayer, I was reminded of these words from John 16:33. As we keep striving, working, hoping, preaching, loving, truthtelling, reconciling, repenting, forgiving, dismantling, peacemaking, Kingdom building...may we fix our eyes on Christ: “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” - John 16:33 Grateful for a very full weekend of ministry and preaching in Toronto, Canada (GTA). Such a privilege to partner with @worldvisioncan @wvcollective to advocate for the most vulnerable around the world. God is so gracious. A true honor to meet and encourage local pastors, lecture at Tyndale University & Seminary (photo), and preach at Richmond Hills Community Church, Compass Point Bible Church, and New City Church. Thank you, Lord, that you use broken and imperfect people like me to speak of Your love. Today, Minhee and I dropped off our eldest child at her college. We have been thinking and praying about this day for many years. On some days, we hoped it would never come. On other days, we couldn't wait for it to come. On some days, we prayed for time to stop and other days, we prayed with anticipation. 
After an entire summer of laughing it off, it hit us...hard...this week. Seeing all of her stuff laid out on the basement floor was the catalyst to a load of emotions.

After unloading the car and taking her stuff to her new home for this year and mindful that she might never live with us again; helping sort out her stuff, saying hello to her roommates...I wasn't sure what to do or say.

A flood of thoughts rushed my mind.

Is she ready?
Have we done enough?
Have we taught her enough? 
What if this? What if that?

And so we shared what we have shared with her the moment she began to understand words: "Remember who you are. Remember WHO you belong to. Remember what you're about. God loves you so much. Please hold God's Word and His promises close and dear to your heart. We love you so much and we are so proud of you." And with that, we said goodbye. Even if she may not be thousands of miles away, this is a new chapter for her and even for us. I kept it composed. Her roommate was staring at me. I didn't want to be that father. I have street cred to uphold. Another final hug. 
And I came home.
And I wept.
Forget my street cred.
I miss her. I love her.
She will always be my little baby.

I'm no parenting guru. I just laughed as I wrote that line. No, I'm stumbling and bumbling along but I'd love to share an ephiphany I learned not that long ago. Coming to this realization was incredibly painful but simultaneously, liberating. To be honest, it was the ultimate game-changer in my understanding as a parent seeking after the heart of God.

While there are many methods, tools, philosophies, and biblical principles to parenting, there is – in my opinion – only one purpose or destination.

Our purpose as parents is to eventually…release them. Send forth. For His glory. Met a friend and fellow pastor who I haven't seen in over 20 years. In him, I saw a glimpse of my future. While only 10 years older, his kids are married and he's now a grandfather of 3. His love for his wife and family were so evident and his passion for the Gospel has not wavered. It was so good to see someone a bit older still passionately serving the Lord with such joy and faithfulness. Lord, help me to keep running the race for your Glory. Happy wife.
Happy life. - Eugenius 3:16

I still remember that time, many years ago, when Minhee was pregnant with our first child. She had left her family and friends in Korea just two years before. Her morning sickness was horrible and when she finally had an appetite, she craved her favorite Korean food from certain restaurants in her neighborhood in Seoul, Korea. I had no way of getting that food from those restaurants so I actually said, "How about a Whopper? Big Mac?" Sorry honey. Eat away. You deserve it. I don't care if it sounds mushy but sunsets are one of my love languages. Seoul, Korea was amazing but WOW...what a breathtaking welcome back sunset by Seattle. Not ready to let go of summer.

my tweets

  • Life has its share of pain but don't get down and cynical. Stay engaged. Self-care. Keep learning and growing. Remain hopeful. Be steadfast. || 2 hours ago
  • The Gospel, not social justice, is our identity as believers but the Gospel compels us to love God/love people incl. work 4 the common good. || 1 day ago
  • Folks often ask me, "What is social justice?" "Social justice" are fancier words for "Give a Damn". || 2 days ago
  • RT @EugeneCho: Just met Edna, a sister-in-Christ. She's 90 years old. She met Jesus when she was 85. You're never too young or too old to f… || 2 days ago
  • Thank you @fullerfyi @KPowellFYI for this important resource about listening, engaging, and discipling young people: churchesgrowingyoung.com || 2 days ago
  • Just met Edna, a sister-in-Christ. She's 90 years old. She met Jesus when she was 85. You're never too young or too old to follow Christ. || 2 days ago

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