I’m Glad

I’m glad it was you and no one else.

I’m glad God used you
to shine a warm light
to a very dank, dark space in my heart.

I’m glad that through you,
I saw empathy personified
and experienced loving patience.

I’m glad I’m glad about you
yet not dependent nor reliant
upon you doing things “right”
in order for me to love you.

I’m glad to realize that loving you
doesn’t need to play itself out
into any result or measurable goal;
nor that you need to reciprocate in any way
for this statement to be true.

I’m glad for this whole experience;
as confusing as it got at times…
…because this has been
and is…
one Big-Milestone-Epiphany kind of Epiphany
about how good and faithful God is;
about how much I love and need Him.

God is. (Ontology!)
Therefore, I am.
And so are you.

I’m so glad we met when we did.

Perhaps our meeting was like that of ‘La Jonction’ in Geneva: where the Rhone, with its blue waters, and the Arve, with brown waters, meet temporarily to bring about a different color into each other’s distinctly colored waters. (Photo archive from July 2018)
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More Dependent on You <3

Letter I wrote to God back in August 15, 2013.

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Dearest God,

I don’t know how to date. I wanted to spend the whole day in special quality time with You, but I am at a loss of how to do so. I woke up sort of late, ate yummy lunch thanks to 정읍 tios(aunt and uncle), read The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, slept, went out for a walk, and prepared for E’s care package. But God, I don’t feel as though I spent time with You directly. Quiero enamorarme de Ti pero nose como. Guia mis preguntas y mis pensamientos para que este sea un sabatico dentro de Ti, mi Dios. (I want to fall in love with You, but I don’t know how to. Guide my questions and thoughts so that this may be a Sabbath I spend in You, my God.)

아버지(Abba). I love you. I’m amazed at how You created me and others and how we are so different yet similar and how You understand each of us completely. God, do not allow me to become blind/deaf to Your voice. Awaken me to Your endless love and mercy every day. Never let me have things my way but Your way, Abba. I praise You and thank You for your goodness to me and my family. I pray You’d pour out your favor upon us so that we may glorify You by blessing others and by running on Your love.

God, Paul’s earnest desire to have his fellow Jews know Jesus was to the point that he could say, “I’d rather be cursed so that they may be saved” and I realize I cannot honestly say that… God, may I die to the point that I’ll be able to say what Paul said… May you take over all of me to such a point that I’ll be consumed by You thoughts, Your love, Your anguish. I’m the weakest of all. And that’s why I’m confident that as I let go of my “independence” and become more and more dependent on You, You will shine through me in great ways. God, use me according to Your will.

Thanks for You and I love you.

Your daughter Eli

In the “May” of My Life

When we say “May,” people who live in the Northern hemisphere and have a large influence on current media and culture contents, think of upcoming summer… the perfect season for weddings. Growing up in South America, May has always been very much autumn going into winter. Trees shed their leaves not in pretty oranges, yellows, and reds, but from green to brown—moldy black, straight out brown-going-on-black.

This paradox of being told at school (I went to an American school) and media (I was more into Hollywood movies, where May is summer) and college (went to college in Korea where May is summer) that May is young and budding with new life was very different from the May I grew up in.

Now, eight years later, I am experiencing a cold May, a May where things are dying; not budding with new life. In this, I cannot help but reflect myself in the playing of the seasons.

In the “May” of my youth, where I am supposed to be enhancing or building my career, skills, and relationships, I see myself instead in a cold, dying “May,” where I am isolated—without friends nearby, without direction, and without strength. I feel like the winter southern hemisphere May befits me more than the summer May I see portrayed by the West.

In winter May, I turn on my electric blanket and heater to keep me warm. I need artificial help to keep me warm. In my soul’s May, I also need outer, artificial help. What help? I don’t know. I believe that the paradox of seasons is also a paradox in my heart. It is a season of both the death of something and the sprouting of something new in my heart. What’s uprooted, what’s dying, and what’s planted is only up to the Gardener of my life. May the winter and summer of my life end and begin in Christ.

 

(Journal entry from May 27, 2017)

 


I wrote this meditation on May of 2017 during a time of great loneliness and difficulty. Now, two years later, I can say God has given me that outer, artificial help in too many ways to count. 😊

 

First Impressions of L’Abri

Before I lose track of time and forget the first thoughts I had on L’Abri, I want to leave a record of what this place has come to mean to me.

In 2018, I was admitting my loneliness and overall depressive mood as I found it hard to adapt to life in Argentina. I had come back to Argentina in 2017 after eight years of living abroad, and fitting in with the family and the Korean Argentinean community proved to be extremely difficult. I felt awkward and unlikable overall and this seeped into my self-esteem—causing it to hit rock bottom. My mom, who saw all of this and yet couldn’t do much to help, suggested I take some kind of long vacation. She mentioned L’Abri, and I remembered having heard of it in Korea as well. The name had never stuck with me, so throughout the first half of 2018, I kept forgetting about L’Abri until I read a book by Francis Chan, where he mentioned it. After this, I decided to Google it and see if times matched up, and when I saw that everything would line up so that I could go to the Swiss L’Abri on a summer term, I decided to give it a go.

Fast forward to a journal entry I wrote back during my student days at L’Abri in 2018 to explain my initial thoughts of this fascinating place:

When I came here, I didn’t have any expectations of the “institution” itself, but had expectations on what God could and would do through it. And after three weeks here, I can say that I like L’Abri in a subtle, profound way.

I say subtle because there hasn’t been any dramatic “wow” factor happening, but in the midst of the daily work, study, fellowship, solitude, and meals, there’s something slowly shifting gears in me. I can’t pinpoint it and say, “AHA! This is what’s transforming and nourishing me!” But I feel something solid building deep down in me as I meet His nature, His Word, His people. And this is how it’s profound.

I feel like God had been telling me for some time that if I truly wanted to be a Kingdom of God agent, I first needed to receive love from Him. I thought I had been doing that, but seeing how badly my broken relationship with family affected my self-esteem and identity proved I was receiving His love theoretically and not practically. Thus, I’m learning to delight in the Lord every day… to be mesmerized by His beauty and glory and honor and majesty.

 

After writing this journal and having many subtle epiphanies, I came to trust God in a deeper way, so that even though I didn’t know how I was going to afford my trip to Korea, what kind of jobs I would find, or how my friends were going to welcome me, I knew on a deep level that this was a trip I had to make. And God gave me just what I needed for that trip. He provided the exact amount of money I needed, the exact jobs I could work, the exact communities I needed. Most importantly, I learned and experienced a deep joy in all that God kept pouring into me.

 

To be continued….

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When I Am Not Satisfied

When I can’t sleep, grumpy.

When I oversleep, guilty.

 

When I overthink, overwhelmed.

When I simplify, stereotype.

 

When I am disciplined, legalistic.

When I am flexible, people-pleaser.

 

When I am hungry, greedy.

When I am full, ungrateful.

 

When will I be satisfied?

When will this pendulum of extremes stop?

 

When I accept the Lord’s joy and His joy becomes mine.

 

That’s when…

Joy becomes the lead

to guide my thoughts and will

to become one with Abba.

 

So, when will I be satisfied?

When I am me in God.

When God is in me.

When we are one.

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설렘

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감정이랑 친해지며 설렘을 느끼고 있는 엘리. ㅎㅎ

하나님은 나를 설레게 한다.

나도 모르게 감정을 무시하며 살았었고
하나님을 감정적으로 오해했던 게 한두가지가 아니다.
하나님께서는 내가 설레는 것에 대해 기뻐하시는데…
그래서 실컷 설레고 있다.

요즘에 영상으로 설렌다.
특히. 나는 영상 편집에 설레고
의미.의도.스토리텔링을
고민하고 풀어가는 걸 좋아한다.
생각만 해도 설렌다.

요즘에 자연을 볼때마다 설렌다.
색상.아름다움.다양함.
다 안 그래도 되는데
하나님은 모든 것을 섬세하면서도
장대하게 만드셨다.
우리가 보며 설레라고.

요즘에 관계를 맺는 것에 대해 설렌다.
오래 된 친구들과 관계가 더 깊어져 가는 게 설렌다.
사실 새로운 사람을 만나고 싶어 하지 않지만
새로운 사람을 만나는 것에 대해서도 설렌다.

인생이 이렇게 설렐 수 있구나.
30살에 설렘을 가득 느끼고 있는 오늘. 감사하다.

오늘의 신기반기 김치찌개 (feat. 돼지고기)

오늘은 돼지고기가 들어간 김치찌개가 당기는 날

 

집에 도착하니, 오! 김치찌개 냄새

오빠가 끓이는 김치찌개 냄새가 좋음

 

잠깐! 밥은 있나?

밥 솟을 열어보니 오! 충분히 있네

오빠 나도 먹어도 돼지?

오빠한테 말 한다: 나 오늘 김치찌개 엄청 먹고 싶었음

 

오빠가 살짝 웃으며 고백한다:

귀찮아서 음식 시켜먹을까 하다가

오늘 인생 처음으로 김치찌개 만들어봄

오늘 밥 1인분 하던 내가 2인분을 하기로 함

오늘 돼지고기가 마침 냉장고에 있었음

그래서 만들었음.

 

내가 말한다:

위에 누군가가 나를 생각해 준건가?

오빠도 살짝 웃은 듯 끄덕 끄덕

 

엄마가 집에 온다.

김치찌개의 이야기를 들려준다.

엄마도 이 김치찌개에 관련이 있다고 한다.

엄마가 돼지고기를 샀고

대부분 냉동 칸에 넣은 고기를

귀찮아서

냉장고에 보관 했음.

 

엄마가 냉동 보관 했으면

오빠는 고기를 발견 못 할 수도 있었고

김치찌개를 포기 할 수 있었고

 

오빠가 처음부터 귀찮아서

음식을 시켜 먹을 수도 있었다.

 

그런데 딱 오늘은 그러지 않았다.

너무나도 신기한 오늘의 맛 있는 김치찌개였다.

(그래서 점심.저녁. 두 끼를 김치찌개로 냠냠)

 

하나님이 섬세하게 생각지도 못한

김치찌개의 선물을 주셨다.

 

이렇게 섬세하신 하나님을

성령 충만함으로 더욱 더 체험 하고 싶다.

내가 좋아하는 음식으로만 말고

사랑하기 힘든 사람들을

하나님의 섬세함으로

배려하고

용서하고

섬기는

내가 되고 싶다.

 

고마워요 하나님.

 

Your kindness always leads me to repentance.

Today’s kimchi chigae just spoke deeply to my heart.

I eat this physical and spiritual food and ask You to fill me with Your Spirit.