#youmatter Movement

Author: sethskim  |  Category: Values, Viewpoint, Vision

You Matter

 

Throughout history, whenever a need arises, the people who take action are the ones who transform the world. Instead of idly standing by, they decide to do something. Their actions, often times, stem from a conviction or a burden. They count the cost and take steps of faith in order to make a difference. Martin Luther King, Jr. once said, “The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.”

The challenge that people from HMCC of Hong Kong faced was the suicide crisis on university campuses. Within a short period of time, news of students committing suicide became a frequent occurrence in HK. As the number of suicides began to rise, we realized that something was happening and we needed to do something about it. Therefore, with our limited resources, we decided to bring awareness and spread hope by letting students know that they matter. It was a small gesture, but it had a big impact on people’s lives.

We began to meet people and hear their stories. Some people personally knew those who passed away. As our hearts began to break, we asked God to show us what our next steps should be. This is when a South China Morning Post article brought greater clarity to the suicide crisis in HK. We know that the problem has many factors, therefore, even topics such as mental health must be considered. But for now, we are going to continue to bring awareness and link up with other organizations that are involved in suicide prevention.

As we move forward, we are praying for wisdom and God’s favor to open up doors of opportunity to bring the message of hope and love to every student on the university campuses of HK. We are going to do this by 3 specific steps: Be aware. Act. Advocate.

  • Be AWARE. There are close to 100,000 students in the 8 major universities here in HK. We want to bring awareness of the realities of suicide to 100% of the university students. We are hoping that we can engage every incoming 1st year student with the message that they matter and that they are not defined by their grades, situation or brokenness.

 

  • ACT. Our desire to bring awareness is just the first step. We want to then provide various avenues for students to take action. We are hoping that we can network with other organizations that provide professional counseling and other resources. We want to equip the students with various classes to learn life skills, which will prepare them for difficulties in life. We want to also provide various community/support groups for the students. This can provide the needed relationships and mentorship to help guide the students with encouragement and hope.

 

  • ADVOCATE. We want to also empower the students and university staff to help spread hope to others around them. If students can take the responsibility of helping one another, then we believe a difference can be made. There are many barriers that hinder those who struggle with suicidal thoughts from seeking help; therefore, when students are committed to helping each other, relational connections can be made and support can come from their peers.

 

So much of what is going on can seem so daunting, but we are confident that for such a time as this, people are rising up to speak hope and love to this generation. Every conversation and every prayer that is spoken can have an incredible impact on someone’s life. It is our sincere desire that we will not shy away from this situation, but rather, speak the truth and offer hope to anyone who is struggling to believe that they matter to God and to others.

Mother Teresa once said, “We ourselves feel that what we are doing is just a drop in the ocean. But the ocean would be less because of that missing drop.”

Let’s do our part!

#youmatter on website, Instagramand Facebook

 

 

The Hearts of Men

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

 
Coming back from my recent trip to Cambodia, I was reminded once again about the evils of human slavery. As I looked at the issue, I couldn’t help but to conclude that everything starts from the heart. Since we live in a broken world, we try so hard to “fix” ourselves from the pain and hurt in our lives. This is where many of us turn to various things to numb our pain; but instead of getting better, things get worse.

It is discovered that a lot of the sexual exploitation has its roots in pornography. If pornography is one of the roots to human slavery, then we need to do everything possible to cut it off. We cannot allow pornography to be the fuel for human trafficking. Therefore, in order to fight human slavery, we have to invest in winning the hearts of men. In particular, we have to invest in the next generation.

The real fix can only be found in the Gospel.

It is the Gospel that can set us free. It is the Gospel that heals our hearts. This video is a good reminder of the fact that we need to win the hearts of men with the Gospel.
 
 

World Shakers. History Makers.

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

 

 
 
 
I remember when our kids were younger and they all went to the same school. It was so much easier driving them to one location; but now, they all go to different schools. I miss those younger years when we were all together in one car.

Everyday, as we got closer to school, I had one of them pray on behalf of all of us. Of course, we rotated the person who would pray because if we did the “can someone pray for us” method, there would be silence.

My favorite part was a phrase that they always included in their prayers. They said, “Lord, help us to be world shakers and history makers!”

I pray that this would be true of us.

We are part of the greatest movement in history. It is unstoppable.

God, may Your Kingdom come and Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven!

HMCC-HK Call-Out Meeting

Author: sethskim  |  Category: Various, Viewpoint, Vision

 

Design by HMCC-AA Publications Team
 
 
 
It has been almost four weeks since the official announcement of starting HMCC of Hong Kong in 2015. There has been a great response. I’m encouraged and excited to see the 2020 Vision become a reality.

I am looking forward to this call-out meeting because I believe God is stirring some of us to respond in faith and to be a part of this future church plant. In this call-out meeting, I will recast the vision for making disciples in Hong Kong and the strategic significance of reaching China with the Gospel.

Whether you will be a part of church plant team or just a supporter or even if you are just curious, I pray that this call-out meeting with be informational and helpful to you. Please keep this in prayer.

Hope to see many of you there.

A Big God. A Big Announcement

Author: sethskim  |  Category: Values, Vision

 

 
 
 
Here is the text of the video:
 

Hi church, I hope all of you are doing well.

It’s hard to believe that everything got started right here in Ann Arbor back in 1996. God has been transforming lives and transforming the world since then. From that point on we have seen churches planted in Chicago, Austin, Jakarta, and Singapore. The reason why I wanted to take this time to share with you, is because my family and I, through a lot of prayer and discernment, have decided that we are going to indefinitely move out to Hong Kong in the summer of 2015. We will be moving out to start HMCC of Hong Kong.

I realize that God used several experiences in my life to help me have a heart for His mission. My first experience was back in college when I went to Kenya, Africa. That was the first time God opened my eyes, literally, to the whole world.

My second experience was back in 2002 when I had the opportunity to go to China. While we were in China, we were working with the underground church. It was at that moment when God put a burden on my heart for the harvest field. There were so many people who were lost and without the Gospel, while the workers remained few. That’s when I began to pray and ask God to send out workers into the harvest field.

The third experience was a bit more recent. As you know, my family and I went to Indonesia to start the international church there. While we were there, we saw God do some amazing things. It was from that experience that God gave me a greater heart for the nations.

The motivation for us to go to Hong Kong specifically, is due to the things that we have noticed in our churches. A lot of Hong Kong and Chinese students have been coming out. As they have been coming out, many have come to know Jesus Christ and have started to get discipled. It was then that we realized that God was bringing these people to us for a purpose.

The second thing that He revealed to me was that of the nine universities in Hong Kong, close to eighteen to twenty percent of those students are from mainland China. I started to think to myself: what would it be like to target some of these mainland Chinese students to do the same thing that we are doing here in Ann Arbor?

The third thing that was revealed to me happened while I was on my writing sabbatical to finish off my doctorate degree. During this time, my writing was focused on the Student Volunteer Movement and how God used students to reach the nations and the world. As I was writing, I found a greater sense of purpose and confirmation about everything that we have been doing the last seventeen to eighteen years.

There are so many people in China who have yet to hear the Gospel message; and there are many unreached people groups who have yet to hear the Gospel as well. It is our heart’s desire that as we reach out to Hong Kong, the “gateway city”, that we would be able to reach out to many people from China and who have yet to hear the Gospel message.

We believe that the best is yet to come. We’re asking you to continue in your prayers and support for us. More information about this church plan will be released, but in the meantime, please continue to pray for us. Thank you so much once again, and God bless you. We hope to talk to you soon.

 
 
I know that this is a big announcement and I am sure that you have a lot of questions; therefore here is a FAQ.

The best is yet to come.
It is all for His glory!

Global Band Missions Project 2013

Author: sethskim  |  Category: Values, Various, Vision

 

Photo by HMCC-AA Docs Team
 
 
 
I am excited to go to Cambodia and Hong Kong with some of our HMCC worship leaders in late December. Music is a universal language that everyone understands. This is why when worship happens in Spirit and in Truth (Jn 4:24), Jesus is exalted and great things transpire.

After my trip to Asia in March 2013, I came away with several observations:
 

1) The Cambodian people love music. I was blown away when we visited a remote village in Phnom Penh and all the kids knew Psy’s “Gangnam Style” song. Out of all the places in the world, I witnessed the power of music on the lives of people (even though we might have to introduce them to other songs).

2) Worship can prepare the way for the fight in human slavery. The battle for freedom is really a spiritual battle, as many people are in bondage and enslaved by evil forces. As we declare God’s greatness and goodness through worship, strongholds can be broken and a standard of righteousness will be lifted up.

3) God is transforming the entertainment business in Hong Kong. I was shocked to hear many stories of entertainers and music pop stars putting their faith in Jesus. Through the tireless work of Christ-followers who are in the industry, people are coming to experience God’s grace and mercy. Glorious transformation is happening in a sphere where Satan has had a stronghold for many years.

 
 
These are some of the reasons why we are going to Cambodia and Hong Kong to participate in God’s mission. We will be using the avenue of worship and music to spread the Gospel.

This is just the beginning. My hope and prayer is that we will open up many more opportunities for people in HMCC churches to use their passion and gifts with music to bring the transformative message of the Gospel to the nations.

Would you prayerfully consider supporting our first-ever Global Band Missions Project through prayer and financial giving?

It will be an investment that will have a huge impact for God’s Kingdom.

Please click here to help support financially.

There will be more updates along the way. Thanks for the partnership.

HMCC-AA 2013-2014 Theme

Author: sethskim  |  Category: Values, Vision

 

Design by HMCC-AA Publications Team
 
 
 
Every September, as we start a new season of ministry, I would lay out the theme for the year. The purpose behind this is to help us, as a church to focus on what God is calling us to do for that particular year. It becomes our compass as we try to move towards the direction that God has revealed to us.

In some seasons, the focus was on spiritual growth; and in other seasons, the emphasis was on evangelism. But every year, God does something different. He knows exactly what we need as a church in that particular time. For this, I am truly thankful.

This year, God has revealed to us that the theme for the 2013-2014 year will be: Forward in Faith.

All throughout the Bible, we see stories after stories about people moving forward in faith in order to experience the fullness of life that God has promised. But sadly, many of us choose to live a subpar life because we are crippled by fear, doubt and apathy. Sometimes our desire for comfort, safety and security cause us to become complacent. We become too easily satisfied with lesser things.

But this is not the life that God has for us.

God promises us a life that is full and abundant (Jn 10:10). But in order to experience this type of life, we will have to take some risks and step out of the boat (Mt 14:22-33). Yes, there is always a cost, but the reward always outweighs anything we give up.

Therefore, if we are to move Forward in Faith, we will have to actively pray for God to work. Then we will have to respond by aggressively participating and going through the doors of opportunity that God will open.

In order for us to practically take some steps forward, we need to:

1) LISTEN to the Holy Spirit (Jn 14:25-26). Jesus promised us the Holy Spirit, who will be our Helper (Counselor) and He will teach us all things. The Holy Spirit is at work. He longs to speak to us and reveal truth to us. But the problem is that many of us are not listening. If we would listen to the small, still voice of God, then we will get more understanding in regards to God’s heart and His purposes. Spend time with God and guard your intimacy with Him. This coming year, God might reveal a lot of things to you.

2) LIVE by faith and not by sight (2 Co 5:7). Too often we live by sight and not by faith. We allow circumstances and different situations to affect us. In essence, the way we respond to things, really show our theology (what we believe of God). In our heads, we know that God is big, strong and powerful but in our hearts, we wonder if God can be trusted. Sometimes God does not show us any more than what we already know until, we take the first step of faith. Then, He reveals more things to us, as we move forward in faith.

3) LOVE the things that God loves (Mt 22:37-40). Part of moving forward in faith is to obey God in the greatest commandments. Succinctly, it is all about loving God and loving people. The Message translation of Mt 22:40 says, “These two commands are pegs; everything in God’s Law and the Prophets hangs from them.” What a thought! Everything that we do and everything that we aspire to become hang on these “two pegs.” As we try to live obediently to God’s commands, may all our actions and steps of faith enable us to make Jesus our priority and loving people our passion.

This is going to be a great year. Join us in this journey of moving forward in faith!
I can’t wait to hear all the awesome testimonies that will come forth, as we move Forward in Faith.

2013 !gnite Recap

Author: sethskim  |  Category: Values, Victories, Vision

 
Humbled. Amazed. Energized.
 
Transforming lives, transforming the world!
Campuses. Cities. Countries. Continents.
 
 

Joining the Movement

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

 

Graphics by Katie Chang
 
 
 
My journey started back in 2005 when I went to India. It was the first time where the realities of the sex slavery industry were brought to my attention. After hearing the stories of so many women and children who were enslaved, it broke my heart. Some of the girls were as young as 12 years old and they belonged to brothels in the heart of Mumbai’s redlight district.

The clincher for me was when I was asked to pray for a lady who was dying of AIDS-HIV. I still remember very vividly the room where the lady was lying on her bed in her frail condition. It was hard to pray knowing that this woman was given a few more weeks to live. I had to ask God for greater faith.

I ended up going back to India in 2006 and God kept on putting this issue of human slavery in my heart.

After I came back from India, life got busy and the convictions that God placed on my heart were put on the backburner.

However, God would not let me forget or let me off the hook. More recently, God used the film Nefarious to speak to Christina and me. At the end of the movie, we felt compelled to pray. We asked God to give us (our family and our church) His marching orders.

Since then, lots have happened.

We gathered a handful of people and started a launch team for the Liberty Mission movement. We highlighted the human slavery issue on December 2nd by dedicating a whole Sunday Celebration to bring greater awareness to our church. It was also the International Day for the Abolition of Slavery; therefore it was exciting to know that we were united with other organizations to bring attention to this issue.

In January 2013, we are going to have a call out meeting for everyone in our church who is passionate about getting involved. We will be forming various teams to get things rolling and put things into action. There are also a few immersion and learning trips in the works so that we can give people first-hand exposure to what is going on around the world.

This issue is massive and there is no one person or one church/organization that can tackle this alone. This is why we are going to just be faithful to our small part in the greater movement of God, while at the same time link up with other groups that are united in the common vision. Please join us in making a dent in Satan’s territory.

You can get more information at: libertymission.org

Giving Towards Transformation

Author: sethskim  |  Category: Values, Viewpoint, Vision

 
The last couple of months have been filled with reconnections. Through my international travels, I have been able to meet a lot of alumni who are now in different parts of the world. Also, I have been able to reconnect with some alumni who came back to Ann Arbor to visit.

Every time I talk with the alumni, I am encouraged to hear that many of them are still walking faithfully with the Lord and they are serving diligently in their new churches.

It has always been our vision, “to transform lost people into Christ’s disciples who will then transform the world.” Therefore, when I see many of these old HMCC members who are now making an impact in different spheres of society throughout the world, it is truly inspiring.

In my conversations with former members, three questions usually come up: 1) How are things going in Ann Arbor now? 2) What are some new things that God is doing in HMCC? 3) What are some ways to help continue the work of transformation?

My response has always been the same: God is working in great ways to build up His church in spite of who we are.

We are humbled to see many people experience God for the first time as they profess Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior (we have seen more salvations in the last few years than ever before). There have been many people who have encountered God’s healing through prayer and the power of the Holy Spirit (many incredible testimonies of God’s deliverance). Many people are being challenged to live out the Gospel in radical ways so that they can transform the world (people are taking some huge steps of faith to follow God).

With all this happening in spite of our weaknesses, we excited about all the new ventures that God is opening up for us. God has given us the 2020 Vision to accomplish for His glory. I believe that the best is yet to come.

Over the years, I have learned that besides prayer and God’s anointing, there always needs to be 3 things to make things happen: 1) A clear vision; 2) People to carry out the vision; 3) Resources to fund the vision.

As people have been asking how they can help in continuing the work of transformation, I have told them that we need prayer more than anything else. Then secondly, we need resources to carry out the vision of transformation.

Throughout HMCC’s history, there have always been generous people who gave to the vision so that God’s work of transformation can be experienced by others. We are at a point where the needs are greater because there are more people to be reach with the Gospel. I want to personally invite you to join us in the great journey by prayer and by giving.

If you have been blessed and transformed through HMCC, then play a part in future transformation of lives by giving. We have provided an easy way for you to give online. If Jesus was able to multiply fives loaves and two fish to feed thousands, there is no sacrifice that is too small.

Click below and be a part of the work of transformation.

Sex Slavery Highlight

Author: sethskim  |  Category: Values, Victories, Vision, Visuals

 
I am always encouraged when people in all our HMCC churches are making a difference for Christ around the world, especially when they use their passions and gifts to communicate some aspects of the message of Christ.

God has been putting our church in a journey to address the issue of human slavery. We have to remember that a movement always starts small, but then it picks up momentum when lots of people get involved with the same vision and cause.

One of our students in HMCC of Chicago, where Pastor Jimmy Roh is the lead pastor, did a documentary on the sex slavery issue in Chicago. The problem with sex slavery is not just in Asia, but it is right here in the United States, particularly in the larger cities.

She did a great job of highlighting the issue in her documentary (which by the way has been nominated for College Emmy’s Awards). We need more abolitionists to rise up from our churches and to join the greater movement around the world. God is definitely up to something.

Check it out the video.
 
 
 

Nefarious

Author: sethskim  |  Category: Values, Vision

 

 
 
 
As part of our Missions Week, we are showing the highly acclaimed documentary, “Nefarious” to bring awareness to the human slavery situation around the world. One of the first steps in being part of the solution is to bring awareness and then to take action. The evil of sex slavery has infiltrated into the fabric of society and we cannot stay silent.

This is something that breaks the heart of God. If the Church does not speak against this evil, then we have lost our credibility as a people who are commanded “to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with our God” (Mic 6:8). We want to be a voice for the voiceless.

It is my prayer that through this documentary and other initiatives, we can raise up a generation of abolitionists who will fight for justice and live for God’s glory.

Here is a trailer of the documentary:
 
 

We Cry Out

Author: sethskim  |  Category: Values, Various, Vision

 

Picture by HMCC-AA Publications Team
 
 
 
We are in the middle of our Missions Week. Ever since HMCC got started back in 1996, we always had a vision that our church will participate in God’s mission regardless of the cost. It is too easy to make church about going to a service on Sunday and hanging out with people that we feel comfortable with, but Christ has called us to something greater.

In fact, the command that Jesus gave was, “therefore go and make disciples of all nations” (Mt 28:19). This is the reason why every week we try to remind ourselves the reason why we exist as a church. This is also the reason why every year, we try to out extra focus and attention on the God’s mission.

This year the theme is, “We Cry Out.”

There are billions of people around the world that are crying out because of their pain and hopelessness. We, as the people of God want to hear their cry and cry out for them through intercession. I believe that God will hear our cry as we humble ourselves and pray (2 Chr 7:14).

Join us!

Our Mission Series

Author: sethskim  |  Category: Values, Various, Vision

 

Designed by HMCC Publications Team
 
 
 
One of the hardest things about doing ministry on a university campus is the high turnover rate that we see every year. Students come and go. Sometimes students will graduate and stick around because of the church; but many will move on to different parts of the world. With every new academic year, the pressing need is to reiterate the vision and mission of our church. I am reminded of what the writer of Proverbs said when it comes to vision – “Where there is no vision, the people perish” (Pr 29:18 KJV).

We are starting a 3-part series called, “Our Mission” in order to: 1) REINFORCE the reasons for why we do what we do; 2) RENEW our commitment to God’s calling for our church. I’m looking forward to sharing the mission that our church has had for the last 16+ years with unapologetic and unwavering devotion. Our mission is simply, “to transform lost people into Christ’s disciples who will then transform the world.”

Succinctly, “TRANSFORMING LIVES. TRANSFORMING THE WORLD.”