July 2009

Incarnation or Isolation

  Yesterday, Christina and I had a great lunch with a couple who have been coming out to our informal gatherings. They are Chinese-Americans who are working for the U.S. Embassy (expatriates). It was great just hanging out and getting to know each other a little bit better. One topic of conversation that came up was with the U.S. policy about people working for the embassy. The U.S. only allows people to work at a...

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“We Are the Foreigners”

  Photo from Empire and Sleep       I have found myself constantly repeating the phrase, “we are the foreigners, not the Indonesians.” When it comes to doing cross-cultural missions, it is easy to see everything from a self-centered perspective. Christina and I have been feeling some of the frustrations of not being able to communicate fully in Bahasa and wondering why people cannot understand simple English. But this is when we have to...

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Missing the Simple Things

  Photo by Telegraph News       The phrase, “you don’t know what you have, unless it is gone” constantly rings out to me as I try to go through daily life in Indonesia. There are a lot of things that we are still trying to get set up for the house that we are renting. It has been a slow and arduous process but we are slowly seeing the light at the end...

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Start of LIFE Groups in JKT

  The small group ministry has always been our church’s “bread and butter” (colloquialism for describing our basic function for our church’s livelihood). Throughout the history of our church, people have said that various aspects of the church helped them grow spiritually, but hands down, the small group ministry is always in first place. We have been calling our small group ministry as LIFE Groups because we believe in the words of Jesus when He...

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First Day of School in Indonesia

  Do you remember the first day of school? Whether it was at a new school that you were going to or you were returning to the same school, there is something exciting about starting school. But in the midst of the excitement there is some level of anxiety. I think our kids were experiencing a little bit of it as the school’s starting date was approaching quickly. So last night before they went to...

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Another Sunday

  Sundays are turning out to be our longest days so far. We started off early this morning at 8:40AM because we had to drive out to Jakarta. Our team was visiting another church to get a better feel of the spiritual climate in Indonesia. This church was highly recommended by many people as one of the top churches to visit. One thing that people told us was to get there early because there might...

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Basics of Relationship Building

  In many ways starting a church from scratch is completely different than being in a church that is already established. But there are also a lot of similarities as well. In the last few days, I have been pondering on what are the basics of doing church and what are some of the peripheral things that we can do without. One thing that keeps on coming back as an essential is relationships. Ministry cannot...

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Kids’ School Orientation

  The whole family and I went to the kids’ school because of the new students and parents orientation. It was a great opportunity for our kids to meet other fellow students who were also new to the school. It was also good for Christina and me to meet other parents. It was great to see a multi-national group. Some of the students were national Indonesians and others were from Korea, Australia, States, and other...

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Week Two in Indonesia

  It is hard to believe that we have been in Indonesia for about a week and a half. On one hand, it seems like we have been here for months and then on the other hand, it seems as if we just got here. With all the busyness in getting the house ready and the preparations for the church plant, it seems as if we have been here for awhile. With all the new...

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Every Opportunity

  The Apostle Paul said to the people of Colosse, “Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity. Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone” (Col 4:5-6). Apostle Paul is speaking to believers and reminding them of the outsider’s perspective. When you are in the “inside” it is easy to forget about what the outsider...

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Jakarta Bombing Reflections

  Within the first hour (as soon as the bombing hit), we received texts and phone calls from people letting us know of the situation and checking up on us. We are grateful for people who are looking out after us here in Indonesia. We have also received a lot of e-mails from people in the States asking us how we have been doing. We are grateful for all the prayer support. The team and...

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Flexibility is the Key

  We are planning on getting our cell phones and SIM cards this Saturday (FINALLY). It is hard to believe that it has been about a week without a cell phone. I have been temporarily using someone else’s cell phone and another alumnus has given us another phone for our team to use. After dropping Christina off, I was thinking how crazy it has been without a cell phone. With just two cell phones for...

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Ministry is about Relationships

  Yesterday I played basketball with our guys and some college students who are back for summer vacation. The guys we played against played for the Sekolah Pelita Harapan (SPH) high school team (SPH is the international school that our kids will be going to at the end of July), therefore they were pretty good. I don’t think I have played basketball for months so this morning when I woke up, my whole body was...

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Driving in Indonesia

        Getting things done in Indonesia require “connections” – some are divine connections (sovereignly meeting people) and some are connections through people that we got introduced to through our alumni. I am thankful for our alumni because they know a lot of key people. They have been helpful in getting us connected with various people who have opened doors for us. Today, Christina and I ventured out in our car to run...

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