Asia Trip Update #1 – 9.29.11

Author: sethskim  |  Category: Various, Visits

It is always a joy to visit Singapore. Not only do I get to see first-hand what God is doing in HMCC-SGP, but I get to spend time with Jackson and Rachel. They have become very dear to me, as I have seen them grow up in our ministry every since they were freshmen at the University of Michigan. It is great to have people who are partners in the ministry – people who are just as passionate about things as you are and people who laying down their lives for the Gospel.

Here is a video update on things that they have been experiencing.

I asked them to answer two questions: 1) What are some things that you are thankful for? 2) What are you looking forward to this coming weekend?

The Ripple Logo

Author: sethskim  |  Category: Values, Various, Viewpoint, Vision


Photo by HMCC-AA Publication Team
Over the years, people have asked me about our church logo. The genesis of this logo goes back to 1990 when I was a student at the University of Illinois in Champaign-Urbana. It was my senior year and it was a difficult year. I felt completely overwhelmed with all the responsibilities of church, as well as my responsibilities as a student, a son, brother and friend. There was so much going on that I felt as if I was about to implode.

It was in this moment where I got in my car and drove out to a park that was about 40 minutes away from campus. I wanted to get away from everything and just spend some personal time reconnecting with God. Allerton Park was the former estate of Robert Henry Allerton who donated his property and turned it into a beautiful park. There is about 1,500 acres of some incredible landscape and artifacts collected from different parts of the world.

It was in this beautiful scenery, when I came across a reflecting pond. The birds were chirping and there was this sense of peace that came over that pond. In the stillness of the moment, I remember taking a deep breath and asking God to show me that He was still with me. Then I picked up a small rock from the ground and threw it in the calm pond.

As the pebble hit the water, I heard the sound of the waterdrop and then, the ripples started to expand outwardly in an increasing magnitude until it hit the edges of the pond.

This is when the revelation came.

I felt as if God was saying that I was like the pebble and that if I would just trust Him, He would use me to send ripples out to the nations. It was hard to believe what I was experiencing especially because of the emotional state that I was in at that time. But for some reason, there was this incredible sense of peace and trust that filled my heart.

As I pondered upon what just happened, I realized that from one single, seemingly insignificant pebble, there was a powerful rippling effect that literally invaded the whole pond.

Then I thought to myself: What would happen if a life can be transformed with the power of the Gospel in this way? What would happen if a transformed life then can send out ripples to reach the nations?

I remember after this epiphany, I made it my mission to make a different for Christ as long as I lived. I treasured this in my heart and shared it with only a handful of people.

Fast forward six years.

During the summer of 1996, as we were getting ready to plant the church, we had to come up with a logo for publication purposes. It was at this moment, when God brought me back to the experience I had at Allerton Park. From there, I just knew that God wanted our logo to be the water ripple. As lives are experiencing transformation, we were confident that God would use us to transform the world; hence our mission tag line: Transforming Lives. Transforming the World.

Solia Deo Gloria (glory to God alone or for God’s glory alone)!

A Constant Heart Check

Author: sethskim  |  Category: Values, Various, Viewpoint


Photo on
It is always good to do a regular check up on our spiritual health. It is easy to go weeks, months and even years without a spiritual heart check. It is not until we go through a trial or even face some difficult situation where we are jolted from our apathy and spiritual complacency.

I read an article by Joe McKeever not too long ago titled, “10 Ways to Tell You’re Slipping.” He addresses how effortless it is to fall away from our intimacy with God and how we slip into the hardness of our hearts. McKeever gives 10 tests to see spot signs of slippage. The signs and symptoms are usually there (sometimes for a long time) but we fail to catch them.

I thought it was a good and quick way to check our own hearts. The 10 signs are:

1) You know you’re slipping when the big thing you look forward to on a Sunday is a football game (or a Saturday football game under the lights in our context).

2) You know you’re slipping when reading the Bible no longer excites you, angers you, or challenges you.

3) You know you’re slipping when you finally get up off the couch and get involved in some ministry the Lord has been laying on your heart and the first thing you do is start criticizing all the other couch potatoes who are only doing the same thing you have been doing all this time.

4) You know you’re slipping when, after slacking off in your tithing over the past year, instead of feeling guilty, you find yourself criticizing the regular tithers for their self-righteous and legalistic attitudes.

5) You know you’re slipping when you can read the Ten Commandments and give yourself a passing grade on all of them.

6) You know you’re slipping when you can go a whole day without praying and it not bother you one bit.

7) You know you’re slipping when you can have a dirty thought and justify it as ‘what normal humans do.’

8) You know you’re slipping when you feel a nudging from the Holy Spirit to speak to that person or give to this one or make a phone call to another and you squelch it.

9) You know you’re slipping when you decide to reward yourself for doing well by skipping your Bible reading and prayer for that day.

10) You know you’re really, really slipping when the problem of slipping doesn’t cause you great concern.

It’s All About the Team

Author: sethskim  |  Category: Values, Various, Viewpoint


Photo by
Bo Schembechler coached the University of Michigan football for 21 seasons from 1969 to 1989. In Michigan, he had an impressive record of 194 wins, 48 losses and 5 ties. With his coaching tenure at Miami University (1963-1968), Schembechler’s total career record was a remarkable 234-65-8.

Schembechler was by far the best football coach the University of Michigan has had ever since they played their first season in 1879.

His famous speech about “The Team” still is replayed to remind everyone that it is not about one individual player, but rather it is about the team. Brady Hoke, the new football coach is starting a new era with the start of this season, but yet, he is bringing back some of the glory days of Schembechler.

There are some great lessons from Schembechler’s “The Team” speech that we can apply to the Church. If we are serious about winning the lost this year, then we have to work as a team. No one person can do everything by themselves. We need everyone in HMCC to do their part. This is how winning is done. We are expecting a great season of ministry and we cannot accomplish anything without Christ and each other.

Here is part of the transcript of “The Team” speech that was given on Thursday night, November 16th, 2006. It was before the big Ohio State game.

Schembechler said,

“We want the Big Ten championship and we’re gonna win it as a Team. They can throw out all those great backs, and great quarterbacks, and great defensive players, throughout the country and in this conference, but there’s gonna be one Team that’s gonna play solely as a Team.

No man is more important than The Team. No coach is more important than The Team. The Team, The Team, The Team, and if we think that way, all of us, everything that you do, you take into consideration what effect does it have on my Team? Because you can go into professional football, you can go anywhere you want to play after you leave here. You will never play for a Team again. You’ll play for a contract. You’ll play for this. You’ll play for that. You’ll play for everything except the team, and think what a great thing it is to be a part of something that is, The Team.

We’re gonna win it. We’re gonna win the championship again because we’re gonna play as team, better than anybody else in this conference, we’re gonna play together as a team. We’re gonna believe in each other, we’re not gonna criticize each other, we’re not gonna talk about each other, we’re gonna encourage each other. And when we play as a team, when the old season is over, you and I know, it’s gonna be Michigan again, Michigan.”

We are looking forward to the start of a new season and a new era.

Hail! to the victors valiant
Hail! to the conqu’ring heroes
Hail! Hail! to Michigan
The leaders and best!

Hail! to the victors valiant
Hail! to the conqu’ring heroes
Hail! Hail! to Michigan,
The champions of the West!
Go Blue!

If this video doesn’t excite you for this coming season, then I don’t know what will. Let’s do this!

New Encounter 2011

Author: sethskim  |  Category: Various, Viewpoint


From HMCC Publication Team
We are starting another season of ministry to the college students at University of Michigan. God is doing some amazing things and we are just joining Him for the ride.

With this new crop of students, we are praying that they will experience God in a powerful way. It is our hope and prayer that many students will experience the transformative power of the Gospel; and as their lives are flipped upside down, we will see a generation of Christ-followers who will transform the world.

This is something worth giving my life to and something worth living for.

We are expecting great things from a Great God this coming year!