L'Abri Newsletter, May 2024

Dear praying family,

We are now in a season when flowers across the world are growing and joining together to praise God. Azaleas are in full bloom in L’Abri’s yard. Although each type of flower has a slightly different blooming time depending on the temperature and sunlight, each one does not fail to blossom. When the time comes for honeybees to work, they diligently fly around and do their job. Even this morning, God’s created world is dazzling.

In this way, flowers and bees obey our Creator God and give Him glory by blooming and gathering honey when the time is right. However, we humans who are said to be made in the image of God are busy oppressing and fighting one another to the point of sickness and death. Spring is brilliant, but the hearts of adults are full of greed, unable to discern what is right or wrong, and prone to bruise children’s hearts as a result of self-centeredness. I hold my bitter heart and bow down before the long-suffering God, crying out, “Please don’t abandon them, but take pity on them and breathe the spring of life into their souls.”

We felt that Holy Week was long and Easter was too short, so we put into practice N.T. Wright’s suggestion that “the week after Easter should still be celebrated as if it were Easter Sunday.” He further says: “Why do we wonder why people don’t believe in the resurrection of Jesus when we ourselves don’t have wild parties celebrating it?” (N.T. Wright, Surprised by Hope, 384-385).

In order to taste and experience the good news of the resurrection and its power for a little longer, we continued our Easter celebration until the following week, popping champagne with our guests and reading the Bible and other books related to Easter. We also looked out at the beautiful tree-lined fields natural memorial garden our window, imagining saints standing hand-in-hand on the day of resurrection. How much more beautiful and glorious will the day of Jesus’s return be?

Recently, I reread True Spirituality by Francis Schaeffer, the founder of L’Abri. I have yet to find a better book on the subject of how to live out the death and resurrection of Jesus in our current lives. True spirituality is not an abstract or emotional pursuit of oneness with God; rather it is living out, moment-by-moment, the belief in the death and resurrection of Christ. In the Bible, this is called union.

In Schaeffer’s words: “In other words, we die to everything and live to God at every moment. We step into the present life with faith as if we had been raised from the dead. There is real affirmation after proper denial” (Francis Schaeffer, True Spirituality, volume 3, 338).

This past spring, Gwang-shik and Nam-jeong served as helpers. They provided great support through delicious meals, conversation, gardening, and house maintenance. Though they will have difficulty finding time to help in May, both promised to serve when they can. Another helper who has been quietly helping is Hae-jin. We thank you for your prayers over her health and ask for your continued prayers for her full recovery.

We had a group from Heavenly Church. Back in February, InKyung went to the church. As the saying goes, “Remove the cow’s horn while it’s short.” The pastor’s wife promptly brought a dozen teenagers (ages 16-22). Some of their words still linger in my mind: “I liked the atmosphere, because I didn’t have to pretend to believe and could ask questions without the fear of being regarded as ungodly or unbelieving.” “If someone is watching over me, I can’t just live however I want, right?” When will they learn that Christianity is the truth that gives honest answers to honest questions and that God is a God of love and mercy and not a tyrant who watches us like a CCTV?

Please pray for Javi, a guy from Spain who stayed with us only for one night. He grew up in a Catholic family but is now a pluralist. For a teacher, who has been baptized but has no intention of believing in Jesus. For an artist whose thoughts are complex and intertwined from many religions and theologies. Please pray that the seeds of the Gospel would be sown in their hearts and bear fruit. And please pray that God will send us workers who can serve these guests well.

This summer, we will only open on weekends from May 11 and daily from June 29 to July 30. Tenth grade students from Seed of God’s Will School will come again this month. They requested lectures on the scientific revolution, the Christian paradigm, and the environment and ecology. And we’ll have Bible Reading with pictures. Please pray for the Bible to become alive to the students, and please pray for wisdom for the staff to meet the students’ needs. As well as pray for obedience as we serve these God-sent students. Despite having worked at L’Abri for a long time, I always get nervous when our young guests come.

We have some good news. From June 29 to July 30 (when we will be open daily), several people will be able to serve as helpers: Gwang-shik and Nam-jeong; Tae-yoon and Hyun-ji; Hyun-ji’s younger brother Jun-ho, who returned from Tanzania; Sung-jin, a student from Handong University, and Hae-jin. Taeyoon and Hyunji will be coming with their 7-month-old son, Aru. Please pray for our health through the hot summer months and for us to work well as a team. Please also pray for our financial needs for the summer term.

The worship services held at Jeongdaun Village continue to be a joyful time. When any one of us misses services, the village members ask, “Why didn’t you come?” or “I’ve missed you all week.” If you ever attend our joint services, there is no way you won’t be moved by their character and faith. Please pray for Sangrae, who prepares the Chapel and the worship PowerPoint despite his physical discomforts, and for our Chapel family members with disabilities to be filed with the Holy Spirit.

We know, Korean L’Abri would not have existed without your prayers and gifts. While we live each day relying on the living God to help and meet our needs, you all have also prayed for us and assisted us. This beautiful partnership of giving and receiving by faith is the manifestation of the kingdom of God that the world cannot contain, so words fall short in describing God’s glory and our gratitude. We would be heartbroken if you were not living in the death and resurrection of Jesus every day, because communicating this Good News is the greatest gift L’Abri could offer. I pray that each of you will rejoice in the gift that Jesus gave: Himself. I pray earnestly that you will enjoy the blessing of dying and living with Christ, not in the distant future, but now.



Translated by Ye-Jin Ahn

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