L'Abri Newsletter, August 2009
Dear Praying Family,
I wish you all have had a great summer! We just finished our summer work to realize the hot and humid summer is almost gone. Come to think of it, it has been this way all the time. Despite my best effort to work efficiently from day break till night, the time just slips through my grasp. This summer was really tough for us but very fruitful. It was tough because two families had to completely devote themselves to serve meals and to do laundry, lectures, and tutoring; the load was simply too much for us to handle appropriately, but we found when we were weak we were strong in the Lord.
It was some experience that fits well with the Apostle Paul's confession, “Therefore I am well content with weaknesses, with insults, with distresses, with persecutions, with difficulties, for Christ's sake; for when I am weak then I am strong.”(2 Corinthians 12:10)
In this summer we had mostly male college students. Everyone studied real hard to find answers to their diverse questions: struggles from the conflict between faith and college studies; sorting out their career path; wrestling with dualism; studying Francis Schaeffer, etc. And non-college students and people with various purposes such as taking a break from one's work and family stayed with us. There were two study groups, including the basic worldview studies. We revived the term exam to see the students' progress.
4 Students from America & New Zealand stayed with us for 3 weeks. They might have had tough time due to food & English; however, I wish this kind of multi-cultural experience was of value to them. We owe our prayer for them so that they may live according to what they have learned.
Dr. JongChul Ahn, Board member of Korean L’Abri and Prof. of InCheon Universty, gave us an enlightening lecture on “the modern Korean history.” We learned that Christianity has had much bigger role in Korean history that we thought. Dr. GyaeWon Bang, the head of local Psychiatric Clinic, gave us an open lecture on “suicide”; his talk caught the attention of everyone in the class; many people including pastors from local churches requested him to arrange more frequent talks. JongChul and GyaeWon visits with us two or three times a year to give us a talk which always has a good feedback. We praise our Lord who sent us good speakers to nourish His people in this back country.
During the summer term, we celebrated 80th birthday of PhilBang Sung (InKyung's dad). 17 family members joined the party. He is still very strong and active. Though we can't look after them closely, we desire to see InKyung's parents living a healthy and blessed life. Around that time, DaeWook "SoBong", Kang, one of the officially recognized traditional Korean calligraphers, presented us his handmade hanging board inscribing “L'Abri”. It is such an artistic piece of work that you will notice when you visit us. During the summer term, the rocks in the front yard were cleared up by heavy machinery for a day. So many things happened during the summer term that we are amazed how we could have handled them. It can only be explained by the grace of God.
The fall term is rescheduled to Oct 9~Dec 3 (8 weeks). Please pray that our Lord may send us those who need L'Abri's special help. Please pray for InKyung. He has many speaking engagement around country before open the fall term. Pray for MoKyung Choi, a perspective helper this fall that she may have a fruitful time during the term. EunChul and EunHa's the older one, GaHee, is getting along with her classmates since she transferred from China; yet she needs your prayer. The younger one, HanHee, has to skip the kindergarten from time to time due to lack of energy. Please pray for the kids that they may get used to the fact that students would suddenly disappear at the end of each term.
KiJin and HaeJin in Canada are doing well owing to your love and God's grace. Please pray for KiJin as he prepares his dissertation that he may press on with the provision of the Holy Spirit's guidance and wisdom. Since last fall, HaeJin has been suffering from back pain; so far she managed herself to live with it. Now, she is starting her junior year, though she started her freshman year with the decision that she will stop whenever a fund stops for her. We are grateful of those who supported HaeJin's tuition; she needs additional $5,000 by the year end; please pray for God's provision. Please pray for EuiJin as well, as he is trying to figure out his career path. As any parent would do, as I think of my children, there is no way but to pray to our Lord.
As you may know, L'Abri staffs virtually don't have room look after ourselves; we have to just shrug off manageable sickness; at times, we have to do without our daily necessaries. As we solely focus on students, sometimes, we overlook our exhausted spirit. During this break between terms, please pray for us that we may find ourselves on the Way of the Cross and continue to adhere to our walk with our Lord.
We are grateful for those who have been supporting L'Abri through prayer and gift. Yet, there is a special prayer request for the perspective staff couple - ChunSung Lee & his wife SuYeon. They'll start working with us next January as workers. They got a boy, JiHo (4) and a girl, JiMin (5). We are looking for a residence for them; if we can't make rooms for them in L'Abri, we will have to find one in the village. Please remember Lee's family that our Lord would send us money to build a house or to renovate one.
This is the time when people in every corner are suffering and when all of God's people needs be awakened. It is also a tough challenge for us working with the young generation, as well.
Standing on the tail of summer of 2009,
Translated by Oh-Ig Kwoun