writing-the-story prayer requests

June 30, 2007

As the students descend upon the BEXCO (see pictures below), Tom (the photographer traveling with me from Worldwide Challenge to do the feature story) and I are asking God for wisdom as we try to capture the story here.Please just me in praying:

  • For divine appointments regarding interviews and photographs. Up until this morning I was feeling pretty overwhelmed about finding “the right” 3-5 students to tell their story, and in doing so, tell the story of the conference. Thankfully, God reminded me that He’s God and I’m not. It’s not my job to worry or to try to work in my own strength; it’s my job to trust and step out in faith.
  • That God would incline the hearts of the students toward Him and His word. That they would experience God’s love for them in a fresh way and they would walk away from the days here different. The best program, the best logistic team and the best band can’t produce heart change in life — only God can.
  • A praise: I feel completely on the right time zone. I don’t take that for granted and realize that’s a gift from God to be alert when it’d be bedtime at home in Orlando.
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the first taste of Heaven

June 30, 2007

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The BEXCO arena is this week’s home for 10,000 Korean students and 6,000 of every other tribe, tongue and nation. Can I tell you that walking down the hall is like what I picture taking a stroll in Heaven will be?

So, things are almost underway and it’s more and more clear to me that God has got to move for anything of value to happen here. I mean, just the logistics for a conference this size are staggering.

Students are spread out, living in 10 different sites around the city: hotels, universities and everything in between…6-12 to a room. That’s bonding, I’d say!

Stay tuned for a link to watch the sessions live or archived. Truly, this is a historic event.

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Real-time translation of 10 languages besides English are offered. Yes, this advertising major can count…I realize there’s only 7 here. I guess that means the other ones are secret languages. Ooooh, I’ve always wanted to speak a secret language. But I digress…

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Let’s just say you’d have to pay me a significant wage of won per hour for me to agree to don florescent green Shrek ears on my head.

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It’s like a skateboard…only not. I’d say that’s good for balance, coordination and impressing the young Korean girls.

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They teach ’em early here. I was outside the BEXCO reading Hebrews and journaling when I spotted Dale Earnhardt, Jr.’s Korean counterpart.


playing a tourist in busan

June 29, 2007

Thanks to my best friend, Melatonin, I slept straight through from 1 a.m. to 8 a.m. And except for hitting the wall a bit at 5 p.m. while on a bus tour, I felt great!

I met up with friends for sightseeing today. It’s a free day before the storm of 15,000 Campus Crusade students and staff members descend upon Busan for the conference. It was also a great way to get a lay of the land, watch people and learn some basics about the culture and the city.

First stop? Lunch.

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Thanks to Scott for his recommendation to try Korean short ribs while I’m here. And where else but at Outback Steak House. I know…my first meal here and it’s Aussie. It’s the Aussie version of Korean food so it counts. Good stuff! Had 2 bites of kimche (side dish that looks red) and then I decided that I’d had enough pickled, spicy cabbage to make a sufficient memory.

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One of the many signs we saw where the English was just off enough that it made you wonder, “Is this really what they meant to say?”

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Me outside the Busan train station before Tom (the photographer with me here) and his wife and I took a bus tour of the city.

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The bus tour. High tech. Pick your language, plug in your earbuds and listen to the GPS-based tour guide.

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One of the many markets….and silver taxis. Is it me or does everyone drive a white or silver car here?

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Nothing says “Buy underwear here” than a sultry look from a wigged, shirtless, plastic man.

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Busan is known for their raw fish markets. Yum…um…haven’t tried that yet.

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Who says you can’t buy friends? Or just one, I guess, in this case.

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So, if I need new tires, do I have to roll them down to my car if the Tire & Tech store is on the 3rd floor?

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It’s 9:30 p.m. and the city is hopping! Even with the amount of cars, it’s still amazing how many people we saw milling around. Last night at 11 p.m., on the way to the hotel from the Busan airport there are people out and about. These are my people, night owls!

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The view to the north of our hotel.

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The beach on the south side of the hotel. Families were out. Couples were out, hand in hand. Vendors were out. All of a sudden I realized: it’s Friday night! Sadly, this man is not so happy it’s Friday night.



i’m here!

June 28, 2007

Thirteen hours ahead of home in Orlando, it’s 1 a.m. here and a little bit of every other hour, according to my body. I’m heading to bed but wanted to say I’m safe and sound in the land of kimche.


struggling to rest, piles for Korea everywhere

June 26, 2007

Let’s just say that today is a good day to take God up on resting amidst the piles.

Literal piles.

I’m going to Korea tomorrow. My passport is flapping its pages in excitement. Wanderlust is a very real thing in my life.

I love going. I really, really, really don’t like preparing.

Here’s what is happening: I’m trying to time the laundry and the last of the work e-mails I’m launching out like hopeful ships. In getting ready I remember other 4 errands I need to run. I’m starting to worry how I find the right students in Korea to interview. I mean, there are 15,000! How will I know who? And, oh, time reading Hebrews seems like a mirage right now.

And I’m not yet in Korea, but I’m already thinking about my return: writing the feature article (I’m feeling rusty; it’s been 18 months since I’ve worked for the magazine), preparing to go to Ft. Collins for Campus Crusade’s take-over-the-Colorado-State-campus conference and having my boyfriend, Scott, drive out from Omaha to meet me for it.

So this, from Preston Gillham, comes at a good time:

The result? What Germans call angst — a tumult in my stomach, a preoccupation within my mind; my emotions are tense and my sleep is disrupted. I’m distracted…and let’s cut to the bottom line: Spiritually, I am sinning.

That’s a drag. When I am attempting to be diligent and responsible across the breadth of my life, God considers my effort to be sinful. What’s this about?

My struggle is rooted in self-belief, self-sufficiency and self-indulgence. Therein lies the source of my sin: self.

I am supposed to rest in Christ. Nevertheless, the struggling to rest is disconcertingly familiar to me. More often than not, my struggle is to control people and circumstances, which is to say, I harbor the deceptive belief that if I can gain control of all that affects me, I will achieve rest.

So, like a child looking through 3-D glasses for the first time, I’m seeing that rest doesn’t come in the form of Old Testament Sabbaths or in me getting all my piles organized. Rather, my rest comes in a Person — Jesus. And He’s pretty much never asked me to clean up my act before He provides what I need.


on my nightstand — demon: a memoir

June 22, 2007

My dear friend, Tosca Lee, got picked up by NavPress and they just published her first book, Demon: a Memoir.

Read the first chapter.

Um…WOW.

The title will draw you in and the storyline will keep you. It’s fresh paint on the canvas of the gospel story–but told in the most unlikely way.

I consumed it and found myself with a hunger and love for Jesus deeper than before I opened the cover.

My a-ha?…Jesus didn’t die for angels, he died for people — unlikely, made-from-dirt people. I don’t ever want to get over that.

Here’s the overview:

“One night changes everything.

Recently divorced and mired in a meaningless existence, Clay drifts from his drab apartment to his equally lusterless job as an editor for a small Boston press—until the night Lucian finds him and everything changes with the simple words: ‘I’m going to tell you my story… and you’re going to write it down and publish it.’

What begins as a mystery soon spirals into chaotic obsession as Clay struggles to piece together Lucian’s dark tale of love, ambition, and grace…only to discover that the demon’s story has become his own. And then only one thing matters: learning how the story ends.”


in my ear: jeff deyo’s “bless the Lord”

June 15, 2007

This song burrowed into corner of my heart and has become my words these past few days.

Jeff’s videos are listed on his site: choose the video for “Bless the Lord.”

Thanks, iTunes, for your surprisingly godly recommendation. That’s the best $.99 I’ve spent all week.