This summer in East Asia was the best summer and will probably have one of the most lasting influences in my life—all because I decided to trust God with my plans.
Typically I work at a day camp and hangout but I wanted to take a break and see how God could use me and my heart for sharing the Gospel. Even though I was unsure about exactly what the summer looked like besides sharing the Gospel and taking classes, I eagerly awaited for the adventure to come. The six weeks were not defined by just one event, but multiple events. Although only 1 person accepted Christ, there were 360 initiated conversations, 131 spiritual conversations, 60 Gospel presentations, and most importantly limitless potential. This limitless potential didn’t have anything to do with what we did or could do, but with what God revealed to us while in country.
We met a young boy who spent his summer roaming around the school because his parents were cooks in the dining hall. We met a girl who volunteers for a group that helps international students adjust to the university life there. Her outgoing, friendly and genuine personality and desire to get to know us better afforded a deeper insight into her life as a college student, and opened the doors to befriending other students there. We had language teachers that were passionate about imparting to us all the knowledge they could in the short span of a month and gave us some of the funniest and interesting learning experiences– we were even able to have lunch both on and off campus and share our lives with them.
Success was and is not defined by the number of people that say ‘yes’ to Jesus Christ but by taking the steps of faith to initiate such conversations. Meeting people where they were at in their lives, and engaging with them as people and not numbers was what allowed us to build these epic relationships; as well as paving the way for the future students and staff to minister to them. Though the people described above don’t know Christ yet, the idea that if they did and how they could radically transform their schools, friends, family and nation is something to be desired– limitless potential.
Naturally, I got to know my teammates pretty well over the course of the project and I can say it was one of the best community experiences I’ve ever had. When 22 different people come together for a singular common goal, its pretty amazing what God can do. From late night pillow talks, to trying new exotic foods, to scrambling around trying to catch trains, we bonded even though we came from all over the country and different walks of life. Of course, our backgrounds did bring some elbow-rubbing at times but overall we sought to build one another up, encouraging one another through prayer, community times, waking each other up in class, among other moments. This was truly a time that God blessed and worked in me, my teammates, and the students there, and I can’t wait to go back in the future.
Norman Joeng, Senior, Queens College – New York