Woke up to a joyful email from a past small group member back when I was at Syracuse. Remembering her as a young freshman, fresh off the boat (Boeing) from Asia, to now is amazing. Fast forward six years and she’s getting baptized! 

Thank you, Lord, for continually revealing Yourself to my friend and dear sister in Christ that she has come to choose You as her Lord and Savior! 

 

Advertisements

I joined Bible Study Fellowship, a year-long, weekly Bible study group going through the book of Matthew.  I’ve always thought of the first chapter as a boring passage with names that I couldn’t pronounce! In this first week, God has taken me so much deeper than just a list of names! God’s been patiently teaching me over and over again about my identity as His child. And not only child, but chosen and adopted into a family of royal heritage! It’s been genuine FUN diving into all parts of the Bible to explore connections with ancestors found in the Bible.

1 This is the genealogy[a] of Jesus the Messiah[b] the son of David, the son of Abraham:

2 Abraham was the father of Isaac,

Isaac the father of Jacob,

Jacob the father of Judah and his brothers,

3 Judah the father of Perez and Zerah, whose mother was Tamar,

Perez the father of Hezron,

Hezron the father of Ram,

4 Ram the father of Amminadab,

Amminadab the father of Nahshon,

Nahshon the father of Salmon,

5 Salmon the father of Boaz, whose mother was Rahab,

Boaz the father of Obed, whose mother was Ruth,

Obed the father of Jesse,

6 and Jesse the father of King David.

David was the father of Solomon, whose mother had been Uriah’s wife,

7 Solomon the father of Rehoboam,

Rehoboam the father of Abijah,

Abijah the father of Asa,

8 Asa the father of Jehoshaphat,

Jehoshaphat the father of Jehoram,

Jehoram the father of Uzziah,

9 Uzziah the father of Jotham,

Jotham the father of Ahaz,

Ahaz the father of Hezekiah,

10 Hezekiah the father of Manasseh,

Manasseh the father of Amon,

Amon the father of Josiah,

11 and Josiah the father of Jeconiah[c] and his brothers at the time of the exile to Babylon.

12 After the exile to Babylon:

Jeconiah was the father of Shealtiel,

Shealtiel the father of Zerubbabel,

13 Zerubbabel the father of Abihud,

Abihud the father of Eliakim,

Eliakim the father of Azor,

14 Azor the father of Zadok,

Zadok the father of Akim,

Akim the father of Elihud,

15 Elihud the father of Eleazar,

Eleazar the father of Matthan,

Matthan the father of Jacob,

16 and Jacob the father of Joseph, the husband of Mary, and Mary was the mother of Jesus who is called the Messiah.

I’ve always thought of Matthew 

Before I begin, here’s a very brief summary of the past year (since September 2012). 

  • (August 7?, 2012) First communication with Peter!
  • (September 6, 2012) First phone call with Peter!
  • (November 3, 2012) First meeting with Peter in NYC!
  • (November 18, 2012) Peter’s ordination service!
  • (April 14, 2013) Peter proposes in Philly!
  • (May 18, 2013) Graduation from Boston University School of Public Health!
  • (June 14-24, 2013) Symphony Church missions trip to Guatemala!
  • (August 24, 2013) Our wedding!

Image

  • (August 25-29, 2013) Honeymoon in Los Angeles, CA!
  • (August 29, 2013) Move to Shanghai, China!

The number of things that I could write about in endless detail here overwhelms me; therefore, I’m going to take it one bit at a time. As things come, I’ll write. So please do pardon the haphazard and disorganized nature of the next couple of posts! I’m going to attribute it to readjusting here. Eventually, I won’t be able to use this excuse but while I still can, I’m going to! 

Our wedding was almost three weeks ago, yet I haven’t truly processed the whole thing yet. All I know is that it was beautiful and perfect!

Friday was made special by doing the Korean paebaek ceremony at the rehearsal dinner. Not growing up seeing this kind of traditional ceremony, I found myself too concerned about what we had to do. Finally, I gave in and told my family (and myself) that we had to just have fun! Once I let everything go, IT WAS FUN! After receiving blessings from our parents, elders and siblings, Peter piggybacked me around the room to show his strength and had to bite a date to determine who would have the power in the relationship (whoever got the side with the seed. Peter did…). We all wore traditional Korean clothes, including my mom in a pretty pink hanbok and Sarah, Maggie and Cindy too! 

Our wedding day was sandwiched in between two hot and humid days weather-wise but thankfully God blessed us with PERFECT weather! The ceremony was absolutely beautiful. Long before meeting Peter, I had decided the day I got married would be a day dedicated to worshipping the Lord. In addition to the joyful praise songs and prayer, P Barry charged us with remembering the work that Christ will bring to completion.  Almost as soon as we got off the plane in Shanghai, Peter dove back into ministry. It’s been so fun seeing the plans and vision for the youth here unfold each week! And to think it’s only week two being here! But I’ll get to this stuff in a bit! 

To be continued…

 

On my way home from work the other night I forgot I was in Boston and not Guatemala after seeing a Hispanic lady walking down the street with a large plastic Goodwill bag balanced on her head. On market day in San Francisco el Alto, ladies would come walking into town from the surrounding towns with bundles on their head full of fabric to sell.  How ironic that this lady’s bag was also filled with fabric. I failed trying to describe to my family how utterly bewildered/reminiscent I was by seeing this and have likely failed again here. Nevertheless, it put a smile on my face seeing these two worlds merge together.

17 This is what the Lord says—
your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel:
“I am the Lord your God,
who teaches you what is best for you,
who directs you in the way you should go.
18 If only you had paid attention to my commands,
your peace would have been like a river,
your righteousness like the waves of the sea.

-Isaiah 48:17-18

I’m always amazed at how much peace is found in reading the Word. And yet, there are so many distractions (facebook, hulu, gchat, useless animal memes, etc.) that are often more appealing to explore. Considering James’ encouragement to not only be hearers but doers of the Word, this is my public self-admonishment and challenge for myself: make sure to hear well so that my doing is grounded in the Lord’s leading, and not just doing for the sake of doing.

Things that I am thankful for (in no particular order):

1. God’s grace and mercy

2. Spirit’s counsel and guidance

3. Jesus’ sacrifice and extended righteousness

4. Living Word

5. promise of eternal life with God

6. calling to be His servant

7. encouraging and faithful sisters

8. adoring family

9. wise and loving brothers

10. able body

11. rain

12. kitchen sink

13. Apple products

14. spices, fruit, tunafish sandwiches, salmon, scallops, ramyun

15. internet

16. cute little sheep^^ (and other small fluffy white animals)

17. Jane Austen novels

18. Shane and Shane

19. freedom to worship

20. running shoes

21. beauty of nature (especially in the spring)

22. Philadelphia museum of art

24. Syracuse Orange men’s basketball team, facebook, google, netflix

25. John Piper

time to catch my plane :]

26. extended family!

It’s strange how quickly one can readjust back to supermarkets, flush toilets, and a fluffy towel so quickly. Whenever I come back from overseas, I always wonder what someone abroad might think of the relatively ridiculous lifestyle to which we are all accustomed to and even take for granted. Anyhow, point of this post: I am back from Kenya! I hate to admit it but before I went, I was a bit more than weary going to Africa. I attribute it to fear of the unknown (language or culture).. but that’s just the hopeful part of me :/

Regardless of where I’ve traveled, I’ve been convinced of the same desire I started having when I was in middle school–my yearning to be abroad. I’m thankful and so blessed to have grown up in the States and been educated and trained in the States, but with that said, P Barry’s “blessed to be a blessing” message keeps ringing in my ears. I have one last semester in school to soak up as much as I can and I’m eager to see what God’s got in store!

“Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation.” Mark 16:15

Being without internet connection for the past couple of days has made me realize how dependent I am on it :/ I might have to purposefully cut down now that it’s back. Anyway, lots of updates to make since it crashed:

1) Happy belated arrival day to my little sister!!! Sorry I wasn’t able to reach you on the big day, but we’ll have a celebrate arrival day as per the Laski custom. :]

2)  As part of a free day/community service trip, I was filing seven years of x-rays at the free and private HIV/AIDS clinic in town. It’s quite incredible. This clinic provides free services to any patient that has HIV or AIDS. And 98% of it is funded by a single private donor. If there was ever a reason for wanting to have oodles of money, this would be a good incentive. Also, for the first time since….sophomore year in high school???? I have been eligible to donate blood! Seeing the patients my blood would be going to (literally in the next room over), I can’t imagine a more ideal first time donating blood. Can’t wait until the next time I can donate again. On a random note, after a pre-drawn screening, I learned my Hb level is 13.6; my blood type is A positive. Maybe the doctor in Seoul was right? Can you have A negative blood type?

3) Data analysis is done!!!!!!!!!! Though it was an intensely stressful time, I feel like I’ve really achieved something by figuring out that stupid, fickle program. If I’ve learned anything here, it’s how to analyze data X)

4) In part because of my frustration with data analysis, I have started running. With the exception of the first day, I’ve ran 2.5 miles each day for the past week. I’m not gonna say much more on this topic for fear of jinxing my running streak.

5) 8 days till I’m back in the States. Enough said. 😀

I’ve been in Kenya now for exactly three weeks. It has been a whirlwind of lectures, data collection and input. I happened to come across the above verse tonight which made me reflect more on everything I’ve seen these past weeks. 

From my work in Guatemala and Nicaragua, I thought I encountered the extent to which poverty could reach. But now that I think about it, it’s really incomparable to anything I’ve seen yet. Oddly enough, my initial reactions from the field were unaffected. I suppose I subconsciously chose not to see the conditions for how they are, or rather, presumptuously thought I had seen it all already and didn’t care to really notice. 

As I approached a compound for an interview the other day, a young girl greeted us in a threadbare red velour dress with green-colored hands caked up to her elbows in what I soon realized was cow dung. The people I’ve been interviewing here live in homes made out of cow dung. They drink water from the cloudy river that they must carry on their backs to their homes in a jerry can for 30 minutes to an hour. 

As a public health student, there are so many things I encounter each day that remind me why I’m in school and why i didn’t just go to the far ends of the world to strictly proclaim the name of Jesus. I’m thankful that I am able to receive this education in hopes that I will have the skills and ability to change and improve the public’s BASIC health. So many interventions of such little scale could make such a big difference in these people’s lives. And learning to do them effectively and sustainably is why i’m here at BU.

When I came across one living situation particularly saddening, I found myself questioning how I could think to proclaim that God is sufficient. How as a girl from the States who takes for granted certain amenities that these people couldn’t even imagine, I didn’t feel like i had any right to even think about telling them about God’s sufficiency. 

At the same time, I’ve thankfully met people and families from the field along the way that have brought me back. God’s faithfulness is true. And it brings me to tears when I remember that these people have the same glorious hope in God. Their God is the very same God who I know to be full of grace–our God who offers His love to us wholly and completely. 

Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 

Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted. 

Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth. 

Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness,  for they will be filled.

Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.

Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called sons of God.

Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven (Matthew 5:3-10).

Got to spend a day on safari at Amboselli National Park the other day. HOW AMAZING. I saw giraffe, zebra, elephants, warthogs, secretary birds, hyenas, and everything in between. Didn’t get to see a lion..but i’ve still got a number of weeks here. I haven’t given up hope of seeing one yet!