Called to Love

As Christians, we are called to love. Always. Not when we feel like it. Not when it’s convenient for us. Not when we can get something out of it. Not when it will impress others. Not when we feel obligated. Always.

Inevitably, some people won’t appreciate it. Some people will take advantage of it. Some people will use it against us. But none of that changes God’s Commandment.

Even when it hurts. Even when I am mocked. Even when I am rejected. Even when it feels like it’s all in vain. In God’s Strength… I will love.

“Jesus replied: ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest comandment. And the second is this: ‘Love your neighbour as yourself.'” Matthew 22:37-39

Sex Trafficked

“Please!” I begged in frantic desperation, “Please don’t do this. You can’t do this to me!” I had been taken against my will by two of my colleagues; a middle-aged woman and a man in his late twenties. They dragged me to a deserted building and shoved me into a small, concrete room. Terror like I had never known paralyzed me to the core of my being. I knew exactly what was happening; I had been sold into sex trafficking. I would be systematically assaulted and sexually abused dozens of times a day for profit.

This couldn’t be happening. Not to me. I was too good to be abused. Too young to die. Too innocent to be assaulted. Sheer panic ravaged me, burning me alive from the inside out. “You only have to work here for 2 months, then you’ll be free to go,” the woman replied as the door to my cell was slammed shut. But, I knew I would be dead, in the only way it really mattered, long before then. Hysteria began to overtake me; a thick, heavy darkness filled the room. Then, I woke up.

* * *

I remember thanking God over and over again that it was just a dream; nothing more than a nightmare. But soon, a different kind of horror reared its ugly head; the realization that what was merely a nightmare for me is a horrific reality for the millions of people enslaved in sex trafficking today. As I dream in my comfortable bed, these captives (mainly women and children) are caged like animals awaiting a slaughter that repeats itself again and again, every single night.

I have prayed on more than one occasion that God would give me His pain for the lost, His compassion for the broken and His love for the oppressed. I believe that God allowed me to feel such a vivid sense of panic and terror in my dream so that I would experience a minute fraction of the emotions these women face on a daily basis. Because now, more than ever, my heart is truly broken for the oppressed and the enslaved. It is impossible for me to turn a blind eye to this horrific injustice. I will never be able to walk away, feigning ignorance, after tasting the terror of this reality in my nightmare.

God’s mandate in this regard is undeniable, we must use the blessings we have been given to proclaim freedom for those in captivity. We must act on our convictions; we can no longer remain apathetic and complacent in the face of injustice and oppression. We must pray intentionally, give generously, love sacrificially, obey faithfully and fight wholeheartedly against the evil of sex trafficking until it has been completely and utterly defeated. Until every captive’s chains are broken.

“You may choose to look the other way,
but you can never say again that you did not know”
William Wilberforce

help me
Photo From Here

Thailand Mission Trip

Ten days in Chiang Mai, Thailand.
Seven hearts surrendered to God’s Will.
Dozens of songs sung in worship unto the Lord.
Hundreds of people served with joy.
Countless prayers lifted up for those to whom we ministered.

One purpose – to Glorify God and demonstrate His Relentless Love for His people.

Here is the video.

Video by: P Joel Yoon

Plastic Surgery in Korea

plastic surgery Korea

Photo from Here

Today, I was in line behind a girl who looked about 27 years old and what I saw broke my heart.

It appeared obvious that she had recently undergone various forms of plastic surgery. There were bandages on both sides of her mouth and above her eyebrows. Her entire face looked very swollen and there were large bruises and bandages all over her upper thighs (she was wearing extremely short shorts).

Tears came to my eyes as I waited to order my coffee; I felt so much sadness for that girl. I can’t imagine how desperate she must have felt in order to believe that she needed all of that plastic surgery. I am positive that society drove this girl to feel unbeautiful, unworthy and unaccepted.

Everywhere you look in Korea there are ads pressuring young girls to surgically change their appearance in order to meet the cultural standards of beauty and be accepted by society. Make your nose bridge higher, make your jawline slimmer, make your eyes larger, make your calves smaller. Street billboards, subway car ads, mall posters, coffee shop brochures, it never ends.

I wonder if that girl feels worthy of love and acceptance now that her thighs are narrower and her mouth is wider. Sadly, I doubt it. For true self-worth comes only from knowing the Unconditional Love and Acceptance of the Father.

I wanted to tell her that she was loved, that she was precious, that God longed to be her identity. But, I said nothing. With tears still stinging my eyes, I ordered my coffee and walked home.

Dear Merciful Lord, forgive and restore this country. Open their eyes to the pain they are causing and the oppression they are inflicting in this nation. Heal the hearts of these young women so that they know without a doubt that they were created in Your Image; that they are beautiful and loved and accepted by You just the way they are. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

The Perfect Plan

For most of us, it’s not easy to really trust God. You’d think it would be. He created the universe. He promised to provide for us our every need. He declared that He would give us the strength to accomplish incredible tasks. He vowed that He would never leave nor forsake us. So, why is it often so hard to submit to His Will and not insist on doing things our own way?

Sure, we trust God with certain parts of our lives. Does this sound familiar? ‘Okay, God, you can have the control of my schooling… I surrender my employment to you… Lord, I will serve you with my heart, mind, soul and strength!

…But, I’ll choose how I live/who I love/when I forgive.’

If we trust God for our eternal salvation, can we not trust Him with every other aspect of our existence? I have learned that the only way we will ever really believe that God’s Plans for us are Perfect is when we truly KNOW His Unwavering Character and His Unconditional Love. It’s not knowing the ‘Sunday school answer, Jesus’ that enables us to entrust our lives to God. It’s knowing the ‘Saviour that died in my place, Jesus’.

When we finally understand the enormity of His Sacrifice and His Grace, it will be easy to surrender every part of our lives to Him with willing obedience. Don’t waste another day trying to live life in your own strength. God has the Perfect Plan.

“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future… you will seek me and you will find me, when you seek me with all your heart.” Jeremiah 29:11,13

Batteries Not Included

Didn’t you hate it when you were a kid and you got an AWESOME new present that you’d always wanted and you opened it up and couldn’t wait to play with it when you realized something awful… “Batteries Not Included”??? What a disappointment!

The good news is that you never have to worry about God holding out on you or giving you second best! He will never disappoint you. God has a unique and wonderful purpose for your life and what’s more, He has given you everything you need in order to live abundantly in Him 🙂

“God will equip you with all you need for doing his will… and produce in you, through the power of Jesus Christ, every good thing that is pleasing to him” Hebrews 13:21

God loves you and wants to bless you immensely. You are lacking nothing in Christ! “And my God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus” Philippians 4:19. God is Good! We are blessed, indeed!

Jesus Batteries

Another Friday Night in Seoul’s Red Light District

Sometimes, just knowing there is somebody out there who cares, is enough to inspire the will to live another day.

This past Friday, I was blessed to be part of another outreach with my church to Seoul’s Red Light District. This time, we delivered roses to over 400 girls trapped in sexual enslavement. Our goal was to show these girls that even though society has discarded them, God still pursues them with a Relentless Love.

It was absolutely heartbreaking to see these young (12-22 year old), beautiful, innocent girls in these elaborate “show rooms”, dressed up in sparkly princess gowns, sitting there waiting… to be sold, bought, used, and discarded, over and over and over again. Make no mistake, these girls have not CHOSEN this lifestyle, they were forced into it; they are slaves, raped repeatedly each day for profit. These girls have absolutely NO worth to those who enslave them, other than the income they generate through the forced sale of their bodies.

You may be wondering: What will a rose do for these girls? Don’t they need more than flowers? The answer is yes. They need much more than flowers. What they NEED is the knowledge of God’s Unfailing Love for them. What they NEED is people who won’t give up fighting for their freedom and their honour.

The flowers that we gave out were meant to be a representation of God’s Love for them. And of the fact that somebody out there cares. We prayed over each flower… that just by looking at them, holding them and smelling them, the girls would have a Divine revelation of Jesus’ Relentless Love.

The Bible records miracles of people being healed just by stepping into the shadows of the apostles and by touching the handkerchiefs of God’s servants. We believe in faith that we have access to the same Power of God today. For it is written, “Anyone who has faith in me will do the same works I have done, and even greater works than these will he do…” (John 14:12).

Many of the young girls who are enslaved have no family whatsoever; nobody who cares about their well being. They are continually abused and mistreated. These girls never receive presents. For some of them, the flower we gave them may have been the first they have ever received. The simple rose was so much more than fragrant pink petals on a green stem. It represented HOPE. It represented the fact that there is SOMEBODY out there who knows they’re alive. There is somebody out there who knows where they are being held captive. There is somebody out there who actually CARES about them.

It doesn’t end with the flower. There is MUCH to be done for these victims of sexual enslavement. God is clear in the Bible about our mandate, “Seek justice, encourage the oppressed. Defend the cause of the fatherless, plead the case of the widow” – Isaiah 1:17

How can YOU help?

1. You can pray for these red light districts and the ones in YOUR home town to be shut down permanently.

2. You can pray for the full physical, spiritual and psychological restoration of these young girls who have been enslaved for so many years.

3. You can pray that the pimps and madams repent and turn from oppressors into abolitionists.

4. You can volunteer your time, energy, finances and resources in some capacity to help girls who are enslaved as well as those who have been rescued from sexual enslavement.

We must use our freedom to fight for the freedom of those who are enslaved and oppressed. We must be a Light in the darkness. We must be the hands and feet of Jesus. We must never give up.

Because, sometimes, just knowing there is somebody out there who cares, is enough to inspire the will to live another day.