Friday, October 19, 2012

Update

QUICK UPDATE: Thanks to everyone who prayed for us. Will have to wait a week for the biopsy results but the doc was very happy to report that he saw no signs of cancer. He did find a polyp which he suspects was causing the PET scan to light up but is confident it's harmlessly benign. God is good.

Peter & Kim

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Prayer Request

If you would be so kind please lift us up in prayer. Kim goes in for some more tests today to see whether the last PET scan was just "noise" or is something more serious. We probably won't get the results until next week. 

I woke up around 5am this morning and came across this passage and it really ministered to me - and so I share it with you. God does not waste affliction or suffering. Thank you again praying friends!  

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. For as we share abundantly in Christ's sufferings, so through Christ we share abundantly in comfort too. If we are afflicted, it is for your comfort and salvation; and if we are comforted, it is for your comfort, which you experience when you patiently endure the same sufferings that we suffer. Our hope for you is unshaken, for we know that as you share in our sufferings, you will also share in our comfort. For we do not want you to be unaware, brothers, of the affliction we experienced in Asia. For we were so utterly burdened beyond our strength that we despaired of life itself. Indeed, we felt that we had received the sentence of death. But that was to make us rely not on ourselves but on God who raises the dead. He delivered us from such a deadly peril, and he will deliver us. On him we have set our hope that he will deliver us again. You also must help us by prayer, so that many will give thanks on our behalf for the blessing granted us through the prayers of many. -2 Corinthians 1:3-11

In His Grace,

Peter & Kim

Monday, October 8, 2012

Hearing God in the Voice of a Child...

Thanks so much for your prayers. Right now, we have no idea what is going on in Kim's body. The doctors don't even know. But God knows. God knows all things and all we can do is wait on Him.

I find it difficult to sleep these days and in those dark moments when I let my mind wander it's easy for my heart to feel so heavy under the weight of all my fears. But God is good and He provides new mercies to get through each day.

Tonight while getting ready to put the kids down I could hear Selah my 4 yo girl singing in her room. Her name comes from the Psalms so it's no surprise that she is always singing...and I mean always. But tonight was different. She was singing a song that she was making up as she sang and it went like this:

God is strong....He's so strong He can lift up a car....He made the sun and the blue skies...and when the sun sets it goes to sleep but God doesn't sleep...God gives peace....God gives peace. 

I stood at a distance watching Selah sing this to Kim in her pajamas and tears welled up in my eyes.  She had no idea how much I needed to hear those words. I've never felt God speaking to me through the voice of a child like I did right then and there.

Yes, God is strong. He's stronger than cancer.
Yes, God doesn't sleep. His eyes are always on His children.
Yes, God gives peace. I feel that peace tonight.

Thank you Selah. Thank you Jesus.

Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. -John 14:27

In His Grace,

Peter & Kim

Friday, October 5, 2012

Prayer Request

"Be joyful always. Pray continuously. Give thanks in all circumstances for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus." -1 Thess 5:16

We just got back from the doctor's and the doctor said the PET scan looked "good" but there were some things that showed up that he wanted to do further testing on. There was one small spot that lit up in the chest and there was some activity in the stomach region. He didn't want to alarm us since this can occur for various reasons but he wants to be sure and so we are scheduling Kim to go in for an endoscopy and some biopsies and likely won't know for certain if the lymphomas has returned until a couple weeks.

It was obviously not the news I was hoping for but God still sits on His throne and our faith is in Him. Frankly, Kim is taking the news better than me. So thankful to God to be married to such a beautiful woman.

We would appreciate your prayers for strength and courage. I can't tell you how much love and encouragement we feel in knowing that we have so many wonderful friends that have been such faithful prayer warriors for us. Honestly, we are so humbled. We love you all.

In His Grace,

Peter & Kim

Friday, September 28, 2012

A Tale of Three Kings

PRAYER REQUEST: Kim goes in for her PET scan today to see if she is still in remission. If you would please remember to lift up a prayer for her we'd appreciate it! We'll find out the results next week.
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I read through a short little book this past summer called "A Tale of Three Kings" by Gene Edwards. If you've ever felt broken or lonely than this book is for you. It's amazing how the Psalms can bring such comfort when you are being crushed under the weight of your circumstances. When we walked through the darkest moments of our cancer trial more people quoted the Psalms to us than from any other book...by far. The Psalms were written by someone who not only understood brokenness but who endured it. I've pulled an excerpt from the book below which spoke to me. Suffering is difficult but it does serve a purpose in God's grand design. We need look no further than the Son of David who was the Suffering Servant and who can sympathize with those who suffer...

Caves are not the ideal place for morale building. There is a certain sameness to them all, no matter how many you have lived in. Dark. Wet. Cold. Stale. A cave becomes even worse when you are its sole inhabitant...and in the distance you can hear the dogs baying.

But sometimes, when the dogs and hunters were not near, the hunted sang. He started low, then lifted his voice and sang the song the little lamb had taught him. The cavern walls echoed each note just as the mountains had once done. The music rolled down into deep cavern darkness that soon became an echoing choir singing back to him. 

He had less not hen when he was a shepherd, for now he had no lyre, no sun, not even the company of sheep. The memories of the court had faded. David's greatest ambition now reached no higher than a shepherd's staff. Everything was being crushed out of him. 

He sang a great deal. 
And matched each note with a tear.
How strange, is it not, what suffering begets? 

There in those caves, drowned in the sorrow of his song and in the song of his sorrow, David became the greatest hymn writer and the greatest comforter of broken hearts this world shall ever know.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Seeing Jesus in the Proverbs

If any of you would like to donate to Joe's "Light the Night Walk" for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society in memory of his son Andrew Park please click HERE and read about it HERE. There are so many out there, like Connor, who still need your help and so any prayers and support you could offer would be much appreciated! Thanks.
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Who has ascended to heaven and come down? Who has gathered the wind in his fists? Who has wrapped up the waters in a garment? Who has established all the ends of the earth? What is his name, and what is his son’s name? Surely you know! -Proverbs 30:4

This incredible verse is straight from the book of Proverbs in the Old Testament and written many centuries before the New Testament. The rhetorical questions penned by the wise man Agur find their unequivocal answer in the Gospels:

No one has ascended into heaven except he who descended from heaven, the Son of Man. -John 3:13

He who descended is the very one who ascended higher than all the heavens, in order to fill the whole universe. -Ephesians 4:10

They were terrified and asked each other, "Who is this? Even the wind and the waves obey him!" -Mark 4:41

For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him. -Colossians 1:16

She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins." -Matthew 1:21

In this election season we can debate ad nauseum about who is the better presidential candidate but our longing for a true, just and perfect leader will not ultimately be satisfied until Jesus returns. He is the fulfillment of the Proverbs. He is the wisest king and the King of Kings. He is greater than Solomon and everything Solomon was not.

...and now one greater than Solomon is here. -Matthew 12:42b

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Seeing Jesus in the Arts

The BBC video below is one of the most thought-provoking commentaries on art that I've ever seen with a great soundtrack to boot. It's an hour long but if you have any interest in the arts I think it's well worth your time.

Introduction: "Philosopher Roger Scruton presents a provocative essay on the importance of beauty in the arts and in our lives. In the 20th century, Scruton argues, art, architecture and music turned their backs on beauty, making a cult of ugliness and leading us into a spiritual desert. Using the thoughts of philosophers from Plato to Kant, and by talking to artists Michael Craig-Martin and Alexander Stoddart, Scruton analyses where art went wrong and presents his own impassioned case for restoring beauty to its traditional position at the centre of our civilisation." 

I kept thinking of a quote from Cheryl Forbes as I watched this video: 
"God gave each of us a desire for beauty; it is part of our desire for him, who is loveliness incarnate."

I'm not sure if the narrator is a Christian but I think he hits the nail on the head. One of my favorite quotes in the entire video is found at 43:30: "Art has the ability to redeem life by finding beauty even in the worst aspect of things." 
 He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the hearts of men; yet they cannot fathom what God has done from beginning to end.  -Ecclesiastes 3:11

Monday, August 27, 2012

Seeing Jesus in the Furnace

As shown in the video of last week's post Jesus is all over the Old Testament. And it's not just in the fulfillment of prophecies. While I understand that there may not be universal agreement on this, I'm convinced that there are numerous occasions throughout the Old Testament in which Jesus appeared in a pre-incarnate form (i.e. Christophany) - often under the title "angel of the Lord". Now this doesn't mean every time this figure appears it is Jesus but there are certain clues it is the pre-incarnate Christ in that this angel does not reveal his name (Ge 32:39), receives worship without prohibition (Nu 22:31), speaks in the first person as if he is God (Ge 22:12), and those who see him actually believed they were seeing God (Jg 13:22)

Perhaps what is most encouraging about these unique appearances is that these encounters nearly always occurred the during the darkest and loneliest moments of a broken person's life. What is also notable is that these sacred moments were often a pivotal inflection point which propelled forward God's redemptive plan. From this we can also conclude that our pain and suffering is never wasted. It is in life's darkest and loneliest moments when we often see Jesus face to face and it is often through that intense trial God carries out His greater purpose in and through our lives. I'll go over several examples of this over the next few weeks but I want to focus on one of the more obvious ones today.

When Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego refused to bow to King Nebuchadnezzar's golden image they were cast into the fiery furnace (Dan 3). They weren't even certain if God would save them, but they were certain they were not going to compromise their faith. God then does something amazing. He does not save them from the furnace - He saves them through it - they were not singed nor did their hair smell of smoke. But what is most remarkable is that a fourth person appeared in the midst of the flames. Who was this person and why was he there?
He answered and said, "But I see four men unbound, walking in the midst of the fire, and they are not hurt; and the appearance of the fourth is like a son of the gods."
Do you ever wonder what was going through the minds of those three young men as they were being bound and thrown into the furnace? No one knows for certain but in my "sanctified imagination" I think the words of the prophet Isaiah, written about 200 years earlier, came to their young Hebrew minds:
Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze. -Isaiah 43:1-2
I believe Isaiah's powerful promise was literally fulfilled for them in that fiery furnace. Jesus was with them. They did walk through the fire. They were not burned.

We all have or will endure fiery furnaces of our own. The heat may be incredibly intense but we are told not to fear, not because God will make the flames absent but because God will make His Son present. As Psalms 23 says, "though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death I will fear no evil..."  Why? "...for you...are...with...me" (Ps 23:4). Thank you for being there Jesus...even when I don't see you. 
The angel of the Lord is ever watching over those who have fear of Him, to keep them safe. -Psalm 34:7

Friday, August 24, 2012

Seeing Jesus in the NBA

Ran across this recently. Further proof that we are all "groaning for redemption" (Rom 8:23) - whether it's in a basketball star or a superhero or some type of fusion like this video. Brokenness. Sacrifice. Redemption. There is a universal longing for the gospel that is often expressed without knowledge and misdirected upon the wrong hero.

What some seek to find in Derrick Rose or Batman can only be found in Jesus.
He isn't a "dark knight".
He isn't a Chicago Bull.
But he will be riding a white horse. (Rev 19:11)
He will be victorious.
And it will be glorious.
Redemption is coming and I can't wait....

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Seeing Jesus in the Old Testament

Perhaps the most compelling argument that anyone can make about the the Bible being God's Word is that despite being written by 40 different authors over thousands of years there is only one central figure..one luminous hero..one perfect savior. Only God could have fashioned that kind of unity in the midst of all that diversity. When Jesus encounters two disciples on the road to Emmaus after his resurrection he gives one of the most amazing Bible lessons of all time...

And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he [Jesus] explained to them what was said in all the Scriptures [Old Testament] concerning himself. -Luke 24:25-27

What a conversation that must have been. When I heard Tim Keller give the snippet below it reminded me of what it might have been like:
   
Jesus is the true and better Adam who passed the test in the garden and whose obedience is imputed to us.

Jesus is the true and better Abel who, though innocently slain, has blood now that cries out, not for our condemnation, but for acquittal.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Prayers for Glo

I recently became aware of a young mother named Glo who is about to pass away due to a debilitating lung disease. Her story will break your heart. I don't know her or her husband personally but we share many mutual friends. She has one young daughter and was 25 weeks pregnant with her second when she was diagnosed. (the 2nd child was delivered prematurely but appears to be doing well). She is too weak for a lung transplant and the family is saying their good-byes. Please lift up a prayer for them. If you wish to be blessed by their story you can find it HERE (email registration required).

Reading through some of the journal entries last night really hit close to home. It was a powerful reminder of some of the darkest nights we walked through and the reality that Kim's cancer is only in remission (not cured) and the need to walk in daily dependence with God.

While it is heart-breaking to witness a family going through something this horrible, it is also uplifting to see how their faith has risen above it all. A child of God may feel helpless, but never hopeless. And that hope is found in Philippians 1:21:
"For me to live is Christ, and to die is gain."
Like the apostle Paul we have hope because LIFE=CHRIST and DEATH=MORE OF CHRIST. It's the ultimate "win-win". For the believer, grief and mourning are perfectly normal and appropriate, but it is under-girded with a living hope that the one in whom we believed in our hearts, will now be seen with our eyes and nothing on earth can compare with that joyful moment which will last for an eternity.

In His Grace,
Peter & Kim

Friday, August 17, 2012

Blessings and Curses

BONE MARROW UPDATE: New Community Covenant Church in Logan Square will be hosting a bone marrow drive this Sunday from noon to 2pm. If you're in the area please stop by and register. Thanks. 
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One of the most profound things I've learned through our cancer journey is that God is sovereign and God is good and you cannot put God and His ways in a box. So much of our lives are wasted trying to evaluate whether something is "good" or "bad" or a "blessing" or a "curse" when all the Lord desires is that we trust that He is in control, trust that He is good and trust that He is always working for the good (Rom 8:28). Always.

I must admit that I got caught up in trying to define what is "good" and "bad". We were so quick to define Kim's remission as a great blessing, and yet in my flesh it was hard for me to see how Andrew's death and Connor's failed bone marrow transplant was a blessing. As I wrote recently, I was reminded through my friends Tim and Agnes and their blessed hardships that we aren't privy to God's master plan. We see life in snapshots - God sees the whole picture. We try to evaluate the puzzle based on a few pieces - God created the grand design. He alone knows the end from the beginning.

I ran across this short story that illustrates the futility of trying to define blessings and curses in our lives. It hit home for me and I hope it speaks to you.

Max Lucado (In the Eye of the Storm)
The Old Man and the White Horse

Once there was an old man who lived in a tiny village.  Although poor, he was envied by all, for he owned a beautiful white horse.  Even the king coveted his treasure.  A horse like this had never been seen before – such was its splendor, its majesty, its strength.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Seeing Jesus in Birthdays

Well, I turned a year older today. Yippee! It's funny how when you're a child the things you despised most (e.g. eating and sleeping) become the things you most enjoy as an adult. Conversely, what you could not wait for as a kid (e.g. BIRTHDAYS!) you'd rather do without as a grown-up. As you can see below even if you are an Asian woman who is genetically predisposed to withstand the effects of aging - the inevitable still awaits you.


The truth is we run from any and every reminder that we are getting older. And yet I've come to realize that this aging process is a actually a great gift from God. It reminds us that with each passing year we are all moving inexorably towards not just death - but towards the eternal. And these sober reminders often force us to ask ourselves the all-important question that we'd rather avoid. Brennan Manning says it so well in The Ragamuffin Gospel:
"It is only the reality of death that is powerful enough to quicken people out of the sluggishness of everyday life and into an active search for what life is really about."
If our wrinkles, body aches, and gray hair, did not serve as constant visible reminders that there will be an end to this life and world I wonder if we'd EVER even stop and ponder what might possibly exist after this life and beyond this world. Would we dare to ever peer beyond this life into the eternal in search for the one who is eternal? I doubt it.
famous pic of "sisters aging"
On my head alone I have hair thinning in all the places I don't want it to thin and thickening in all the places I don't want it to thicken. But I'm learning to be thankful for it. Because God is reminding me that this body is not eternal and this world is not my home. God is eternal and heaven is my home. And I want to live my life on earth in a way that is consistent with that truth.

So thank you unwanted birthdays. Thank you unwanted cancer. Thank you unwanted funerals. While none are desired in and of themselves they are gifts because they set us off on a quest for the eternal - they provoke us to begin an active search for what life is really about and in the end that is what really matters. If you find yourself on that journey I hope you find the answer. I pray you do.
I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. -John 14:6
 In His Grace,

Peter & Kim

Monday, August 13, 2012

Seeing Jesus in Our Trials

A few weeks ago Kim and I attended the wedding of an old friend and while there we came across another couple named Tim and Agnes that we had not seen or talked to in years as they had moved from Chicago to DC five years ago. Apparently, they had found out about Kim's cancer via Facebook and were following along and praying for us from the beginning. It was obvious that they shed many tears on our behalf as they flowed freely when we saw them.  So humbling.

What came next simply blew us away.  They knew all about our story but then they began to share with us their story. Around the same time they moved to DC and lost touch with us five years earlier their firstborn son was diagnosed with Phelan-McDermid Syndrome - a rare genetic form of autism. It's so severe that even to this day he has great difficulty with basic communication. This completely blindsided them. Tim was building a career in investment banking and Agnes' dermatology practice was taking off and this young family's future was so bright and suddenly they were looking at a parent's worst nightmare. Agnes shared with Kim how she slipped into depression and couldn't even get herself to go to work for nearly a year. Just as they began to grapple with their son's condition and things began to resemble some form of normalcy Tim was struck by a car. He was out for a jog and someone ran through a stoplight and ran over his leg basically shattering it. On top of that, he had a blood clot after surgery near his heart and for a while Agnes thought that she had lost him for good. After about 18 months of rehab Tim was finally starting to run again. But what was most amazing was seeing how much they had grown in their love for God and others not despite their trials but because of their trials.

Their son still has autism and Tim still has a steel rod in his leg. But I can tell you this - they looked so happy. It was so obvious that despite their hardships God has done an amazing work in their lives. While initially they were much more private about their personal struggles they no longer hesitate to share with anyone who will listen what God has done and is doing - they want Him to receive all the glory and that's why they've given me permission to share it on this blog.  Please pray for this family and their son

The song below is one that ministered to this family as they asked the question:"Why us God?" What a powerful witness it is to choose to worship God not when things go your way but when things don't. The world cannot understand this kind of joy and peace and yet it's what everyone longs for.

Sometimes you struggle with understanding why God does things. Why He sometimes chooses not to heal a courageous teenager as in the case of Andrew. Why He sometimes allows a young boy like Connor to continue on his quest for a bone marrow match. I've asked Him at times why in our journey Kim has experienced healing and these young boys have not - though it looked that way for a while. But when I ran across our friends Tim and Agnes I was reminded once again. God has a plan and a purpose for all of us and He is always working for the good of those who love Him. Always. I'm sure Agnes had difficulty seeing this when her son was diagnosed with autism. I'm sure Tim had difficulty seeing this when he was hit by a car. But they see it more clearly now - or perhaps I should say that they see Jesus more clearly now - and that has made all the difference in the world.

In His Grace,
Peter & Kim

Monday, August 6, 2012

Thankful

My New Favorite Family Pic
My apologies as I know it's been a while since my last post. We just drove back from Toronto last night and spent a good part of this summer traveling, seeing friends and family and just making up for lost time after Kim spent 43 nights in the hospital earlier this year. I'm so grateful that I work for a company that was kind enough to give me leave through the summer to make these memories possible. Some highlights of this summer include enjoying fireworks at Disney World's Magic Kingdom, watching the sun set over the Grand Canyon, seeing dolphins on a California beach, and getting sprayed by the mist of Niagara Falls. But honestly, the best part of it all was just spending time with so many people that we love and who have loved us in amazing ways especially through our cancer journey this year. As we've visited various churches and cities it's been so humbling to meet and personally thank the people who have cried with us and prayed for us (many of whom did not even know us). Thank you Jesus.

Please continue to lift up Andrew's family, with his recent passing, and Connor's family as they continue their search for a bone marrow donor match. Over 400 people registered at the GKYM Conference in Wheaton a couple weeks ago and of the 10 million people on the bone marrow registry only 70,000 are Korean - so 400 is a significant number. If you haven't registered and would like to please go to www.marrow.org and request a cheek swab kit to see if you might have the privilege of saving someone's life.

p.s. I've posted a few pics below for those of you who have lifted up our travels this summer. Wish we could have seen ALL of you. Thanks.


Niagara Falls
Superhero-themed Birthday Party in Canada
True Identities Revealed

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Seeing Jesus in Disney Princesses

After starting our family with two boys I have to admit, I thought there was little chance my daughter would have any desire to be feminine and so I was pleasantly surprised when she developed a love for dresses and princesses. That said, it's starting to get out of control. When we were at Disney World last month I told each of the kids they could buy one thing as a souvenir. Selah carefully chose a new princess doll to add to her collection - the latest Disney Princess....Merida. Kim and I told her she could open the box when we got home but we should have known better. Here was my conversation with her in Orlando:

S: Can I open the box now? 

Me: No, not now. 

S: But I love her!

Me: Do you love her more than daddy?

S: Yes. 

Me: But she's not real. 

S: I know.

Me: She can't talk. 

S:  I know...but I love her. 

Me: She can't love you back. 

S: I know.  

Me: Do you really love her more than daddy? 

S: (long pause) Okay. No. So can I open the box now?!?

From this conversation I came to two conclusions. One: females do have a higher emotional intelligence than males. (at least in my family) Two: Idolatry begins at a very young age. I also realized there if very little difference between a four year old girl and full-grown adults when it comes to loving things that are not real, that don't love us, and that cannot love us back. These little idols come in all shapes and size from a successful career, money, cars, homes, children, finding the perfect partner, etc. The great tragedy is that in loving created things we fail to recognize the love of the Creator - God Himself. May we discover the one true love our hearts are longing for. May we come to love the God who loves us and who is love (1 Jn 4:8).

"God nowhere tells us to give things up for the sake of giving them up. He tells us to give them up for the sake of the only thing worth having - life with Himself." -Oswald Chambers

Monday, July 23, 2012

Seeing Jesus in Superheroes

BONE MARROW UPDATE: Praise God we were able to get approval to set up a booth at the GKYM and KWMC Conference at Wheaton College this week. That said, we are looking for volunteers to fill certain slots. (4-7pm on Wed, Jul 25th, and any time on Thur or Fri, Jul 26 & 27th). If you are able to help man the booth please contact Danielle at 847-226-4829 or email her at DVickers@itxm.org. Thanks!! 
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For we know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now. And not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. -Romans 8:22-23

It's difficult to fathom what recently occurred in a movie theater in Aurora, Colorado. I can't imagine the profound sense of loss to something so senseless that many families are now dealing with. Our thoughts and prayers go out to them. Despite the horrific violence of one deranged man, stories are emerging of sacrificial love that is of the highest order...the giving of your life for another. Here's a LINK to a story of three men who did just that for the women they loved. It deserves a read.

How do you explain this kind of evil and suffering? It's impossible on this side of heaven. But one thing is clear. This is an utterly broken and fallen world and we are living in some crazy times. Economic uncertainty, social unrest, political upheaval, random acts of senseless violence - everything seems to be in disarray - even the natural world; from earthquakes, to hurricanes, to tsunamis - the frequency is dizzying and intensity is frightening.

Not to get all "doomsday" on you, but even the general public seems to recognize that we may be approaching a final climax in which mankind will find a way to destroy themselves if some higher power does not intervene. Just look at all the movies Hollywood is churning out with that same dark apocalyptic theme whether it's about superheroes, natural disasters, a contagious disease, terrorist attack, or a war to end all wars. We are living in fear that something big and bad is going to happen and we are searching for a superhero that will save us from ourselves and until we find that hero the Batman, Spiderman, Superman, and Ironman movies are sure to continue. G.K. Chesterton once said:
"Fairy tales are more than true; not because they tell us that dragons exist, but because they tell us that dragons can be beaten."
Given that comic book hero movies are essentially fairy tales for men, I think Chesterton's quote applies to this genre as well. These movies are more than true; not because they tell us that these comic book heroes exist, but because they tell us that a superhero does exist and justice will one day prevail and evil one day will be conquered and there will be a "happily ever after". This is why Bonnie Tyler's song "I Need a Hero" later parodied by Shrek in the video below was such a big hit. We are all searching for a hero. We all seek salvation even if we have to settle for a big green monster to fill that role - be it Shrek or the Incredible Hulk. 



But the world searches in vain because the real superhero is not found in a fictitious person who is part mutant and part man trying to reconcile his vast mutant powers for good or for evil. He is a real person who is fully God and fully man who has come to reconcile the world to himself from evil. And with each passing day in which more lives are lost and more heinous crimes are committed we are left groaning for redemption and longing for justice. We are left waiting for a superhero to end all superheros. But he has already come and he has already demonstrated a love of the absolute highest order in giving his life for those who refused his love - and best of all he has promised to return. Therefore, no matter how hopeless things are in this world, hope still lives. Hope is alive and well and his name is Jesus Christ.

Maranatha.
Peter & Kim

Monday, July 16, 2012

Seeing Jesus in the Grand Canyon

"Who is like you, O LORD, among the gods? Who is like you, majestic in holiness, awesome in glorious deeds, doing wonders?" -Exodus 15:11

Is it just me or is the word "awesome" becoming a tad overused? Does a dessert really inspire awe? Does a roller-coaster really deserve this title? Can it be defined in a humorous poster?

We recently made a trip to see the Grand Canyon and I must say, that is probably the closest thing to "awesome" on this earth. It's sheer size and grandeur will drop your jaw. As we were driving there I kept telling my kids what a privilege this was and we would be seeing it for the first time together (Kim saw it as a child, but I never have). I was able to capture their memorable reaction on video:

Yes...my children were more enamored with some nearby rocks and dirt over one of the "seven natural wonders of the world". How sad. Isn't this true for all of us in some sense? We often find ourselves distracted by things so unworthy of our attention, worshiping created things over the Creator, and in so doing we fail to appreciate the beauty and wonder of God Himself. 

As awesome as the Grand Canyon is only God truly deserves that title. Have you ever noticed that anytime a person enters the presence of God in Scripture their immediate response is to fall on their face? That's "shock and awe". Notice it's not a holy God scurrying away from sinful man. It's sinful man falling down and hiding his face from an awesome and holy God.

In our man-centeredness many of us tend to think that sin somehow has power over God - as if God is Superman and sin is his kryptonite. We have it backwards. It's not so much that a holy God cannot dwell with sin - but rather it's sin that cannot dwell with a holy God. When Uzzah touched the Ark of the Covenant (2 Sa 6:7) the Ark was not destroyed....he was. Sin and anything sinful is simply vaporized when it comes into contact with the awesome holiness of God. It's as simple as that.

Seeing the Canyon reminded me of the great chasm that separates us from God. We have been separated by our sin and that separation is vast. It is humanly impossible to bridge that gap. But in the Gospel we learn that God, in His goodness, has bridged that gap. He bridged it through His Son Jesus Christ and it is only in him that we find the true "stairway to heaven" (Jn 1:51).


























And so God did not send His Son as a panacea to His greatest weakness - He sent His Son as a panacea to our greatest weakness. This was not God's solution to His greatest problem - it was God's solution to our greatest problem. Thank you Lord.

In His Grace,

Peter & Kim

Friday, July 13, 2012

Answered Prayer! (Help Needed!)

Dear Friends, 

It looks like we have received approval to host a bone marrow drive at the GKYM (Global Korean Missions Conference) - praise the Lord! There will be approximately 5,000 people attending the conference and we hope to get 1/2 of them registered.  Here is how you might be able to help:

We need help pre-labeling swab kits!  If you have a group of people (friends/family/co-workers/etc) that can get together sometime next week and pre-label swab kits, a kind volunteer named Danielle Vickers (from Be the Match) can come out and show you how to do it and give you all the supplies.  Or if you’d like to take a box of 100, Be the Match can send them directly to you and speak with you by phone to explain how to label. They can also pick them up from you upon completion.

We need help during the drive! The drive will take place at Wheaton College Tuesday, July 24th through Thursday, July 26th.  We are waiting on an exact timeframe, however it will most likely be during the day.  We may possibly have an evening timeframe but that is not confirmed yet. If you cannot make it, do you know someone that can?  Or do you know someone that needs volunteer hours?  We might have two booths and we will need all the help we can get.
 
Please  contact Danielle Vickers at DVickers@itxm.org or 847-226-4829 if you think you can help by doing any of the above. If you cannot please consider passing this request on to family/friends. 

Connor is desperately looking for a match and I recently was introduced to the parents of another 4 year old girl named Victoria (same age as my little girl) who is desperately searching for a match to saver her life and is running out of time. Please help them and so many others. Thanks so much!

In His Grace,

Peter & Kim

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Seeing Jesus in Andrew Park

For those interested in attending Andrew's memorial service tomorrow night please see Joe's blog HERE for details.  Thanks to many of you who reached out after my last post about getting a bone marrow drive set up at the Global Missions Conference in Wheaton later this month. I was able to get in touch with some of the leaders and the ball is rolling. Please pray for a favorable result and for Connor and so many others that are searching desperately for a match.
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Andrew at age 4 in his Sunday School class
Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die. -John 11:25

I've been reflecting a lot this past week or two on Andrew's passing and the emotions have been so mixed. We are grieving for a family that misses him so much, and yet we are joyful in knowing that Andrew is free from pain and in the presence of Jesus. 

As many of you know, Andrew wasn't just another boy with cancer to us. Kim had the privilege of being Andrew's Sunday School teacher since he was about four years old and so she has watched him grow over the years in every way a boy can grow.

Not only that, Andrew was also diagnosed with a rare form of leukemia the day after we found out that Kim had cancer and so from the onset we all knew that we were fighting this battle together. Both Kim and Andrew fought through their respective cancers and despite very different outcomes they both fought a good fight and they fought with the Lord's strength. I am sure of it.

This was Andrew's second bout with cancer. His first was over three years ago and so Kim and I not only looked to the Lord but to Andrew, his father Joe and their family to help us walk through this darkest of valleys. Despite their own pain and suffering they were happy to serve us in this way. The student was now leading the teacher and we had never been more proud to follow.

I'll be honest. In my flesh, sometimes it's hard not to struggle with the fact that Kim is in remission, while Andrew has passed and Connor continues to recover from a failed BMT. Sometimes it's difficult to make sense of God's plan as it unfolds. But the truth still stands: God is good. God is sovereign. God is glorious.  Sometimes those truths are all you have to cling to...but it's enough.

These past few days I've been meditating upon two deaths in the Gospels - Lazarus and Jesus. Lazarus was raised from the dead but the truth is he eventually died. The Gospels do not record the exact day or when it happened but it's true - he passed away. Jesus' resurrection was different. He has risen and he still lives.

Jesus' raising of Lazarus from the dead was just a picture of the greater resurrection that was soon to come. His own.  And therein lies our living hope. If Lazarus' empty tomb was but a shadow, then Jesus' empty tomb is the Sun. One a dim reflection and the other a blaze of glory.

And what we learn is that even in death or life, God's goodness cannot be diminished, God's purpose cannot thwarted, and God's glory cannot be frustrated. Jesus' death and resurrection has paved the way for ours and when we receive Jesus by faith as our Lord and Savior we become participants of his death and resurrection (Gal 2:20) and that is exactly what the baptism (being submerged underwater and brought to new life) was meant to picture. And so we mourn but we do not mourn like the world who has no hope. We mourn death with a living hope. Because our hope is in the One who is the "resurrection and the life"(Jn 11:25).

I believe with all my heart that Andrew is now in the presence of Jesus and he has never been happier. Ever. His eyes now see what his heart already knew and he is in the arms of the One who sustains the universe and who spoke it into being.

God's goodness has not been diminished, God's purpose has not been thwarted, and God's glory has not been frustrated. Blessed be His name.

In His Hope,

Peter & Kim

Monday, July 9, 2012

Saving Connor

With Steph's permission I wanted to copy over a recent post on her blog. If you felt your heart wrench reading Joe's post about his son Andrew passing, your heart will also be wrenched by a mother crying out for her son. As many of you know Connor's BMT did not take and so he is back at square one looking for another match. They have been patiently waiting for years now for a match and found one late last year that backed out and one this year that did not take. They are depending on the kindness of strangers to help save their son. Please embody the gospel by serving them and register at marrow.org. All it takes is a simple cheek swab to see if you can save a life. Also, if there is anyone out there that has connections with Global Korean Young Adult Mission (GYKM) and/or the Korean World Council for Christ (KWMC) - they are holding their annual Korean World Mission Conference at the Billy Graham Center at Wheaton College on July 23-27 and they're expecting 5,000 young Korean Christians. We're trying hard to get a bone marrow drive at the conference and so any help or contacts anyone can provide to get that ball moving would be greatly appreciated. Please leave a comment or shoot me an email at seeingjesusineverything@gmail.com if you can help. Thanks!
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We went for more labwork and his counts have dropped to very low levels again.  We stopped administering G-csf on Sunday and in 5 days time his numbers have dropped dramatically. He needed another blood transfusion today and will most likely need platelets on Tues.  The doctors have decided to continue G-csf again until our next appointment and then based on those numbers will need to determine if we will need a bone marrow biopsy to see what is truly going on in there.  They all seem a bit concerned that his body is not able to sustain production of his immune system but at the same time keep encouraging us that his counts are not at 0, close to it, and that there is some production- but who knows if it is due to all the blood and platelets that he gets on a weekly basis now?  It is difficult to stay optimistic especially since Connor is only the 2nd patient undergoing RIC at Children's whose bmt failed so they just don't have a lot of data for us to review.  Can you believe he is only the 2nd child??? SO FRUSTRATING!!! Please don't get me wrong, we accept what has happened, what choice do we have after all, and we generally have very good days BUT I do have these moments where I just look to the universe and say UGHHHHH!!!

What is really scary is the decision that we have to make about a second transplant. I ran into a mother of a 12 year old son who is suffering from acute GVHD on his skin.  I have read about that being a possibility but until you talk to someone you don't really understand what GVHD of the skin means...she described it as the entire skin suffered from burns and her son is in excruciating pain and so much of his skin peels off his body that she has to clean the floor of his room at least 3 times a day.  He underwent full myloblative bmt- the preconditioning treatment that Connor will have to endure if or when  he has to do this again.  How do we make this choice and when?  We are still seeking guidance on all of this and trying to review all of our bmt research again but for now we still need to find another donor!  Please encourage everyone to register- most of them will never be called to donate and a lucky few may have the opportunity to save a life!

Connor is still doing well, we are keeping occupied by re-decorating his room and making it everything Star Wars! And he finally got a big boy desk and takes so much pride in keeping it organized and lining things up. I actually got him to let go of a few of his toys from when he was 2 or 3 so I am thrilled!    We are slowly getting into some sort of schedule but some days he is just really tired. 

Thank you all for your prayers for our family and for Andrew's family.  God has heard your prayers and our friend Nancy is out of intensive care, she still has a long road ahead of her but she is off of most of her machines and we are so grateful!

Have a great weekend! 
Steph

Saving Connor from Saving Connor on Vimeo.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Good Bye My Son

Below is a post I copied from Joe's blog reflecting upon Andrew's last hours and funeral. You can see original post, pictures and leave a comment for Joe HERE. Please continue to lift up Joe and his family in prayer. Thanks.
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I have been putting off writing this post for over 24 hours.  My heart is aching horribly as I miss my Andrew so much, it's unbearable at times. I can't breathe at times, but I know he is jumping in joy, singing and dancing, eating whatever he wants and fellowshipping with believers gone to heaven earlier.  Worshiping and being eternally joyful in the audience of Jesus.  Nonetheless, it's so hard.  But I am constantly reminded by whispers from Andrew and God, there is a time for mourning and a time for laughing:

A TIME TO WEEP AND A TIME TO DANCE,  
A TIME TO MOURN AND A TIME TO DANCE...
Ecclesiastes 3:4

So, I have divergent feelings.  On one hand, I have been laughing and celebrating his life by myself and with family and on the other hand I have felt so alone and sad without my son, my only son.  I have felt numb and I have felt happiness and joy, but I sit here and write about Andrew's passing, his life and legacy and how I feel about my son.  Please be patient with me.  This is very difficult to do.  So  as I sit here alone, take a seat with me and read and listen.  It may be lengthy, but I know you all would like to know the details and the beauty of his passing.  

This is to my champ, my hero, my son....my beloved.
     
     The last time I wrote, It was this past Friday night after we had told Andrew there was nothing left we could do for him and that he was dying.  The family that meant the most to Andrew rushed by plane and auto to get to Andrew's bedside, some coming right before his passing.  We knew as of Friday, Andrew's health was deteriorating rapidly and would not last long.  But it was just Saturday morning Jennifer, Yun and I decided to stop treatment and not have Andrew suffer further.  It was one of the more difficult things we had to do, but it was the right thing to do and the Lord was right behind us.  Andrew's pain was increasing and we had to go up on the pain meds and sedatives to keep him comfortable.  Our goal was to keep our boy "comfortable" as possible.  We called the healthcare team in the morning Saturday and made sure everyone was gathered to make sure we all knew what we were going to do, to make sure Andrew passed without any pain.  They assured us they would make Andrew feel as comfortable as possible and he most likely not feel anything.  With that said, we called all our relatives into the hospital to gather and to say our last goodbyes and make sure he had a gathering of loved ones who meant the most, to send him off to eternal glory and to a perfect and healthy body which will last forever.  

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Seeing Jesus in Every Season

A friend introduced this song to me a while back and we played it while we watched fireworks with the family last night. What a great reminder that we can see God in each of the seasons He created - serving as a regular reminder of who He is and how He works.

Please continue to lift up Andrew's family as they grieve their loss and celebrate God's goodness in His life. Andrew is now celebrating freedom in a way that we on earth can only imagine. Please continue to lift up Connor and family as well as he is still recovering from his BMT at home.

Happy 4th of July everyone.

It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery. -Galatians 5:1

Saturday, June 30, 2012

Seeing Jesus...

Per Joe on FB: Rest in peace my beautiful son! He is in eternal glory resting with his lord and savior:-). He passes away in no pain and in such a peaceful way.

Thanks everyone for praying for this precious family. Andrew now sees with his eyes what his heart had already known and our grief is dwarfed by his joy.

I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Now there is in store for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day--and not only to me, but also to all who have longed for his appearing. -2 Timothy 4:7-8

In His Grace,

Peter & Kim

GOODBYES

For those of you praying for Andrew and his family. I cut and pasted below Joe's latest update on his blog. You can visit it HERE and leave an encouraging comment if you wish.  May the peace of God guard their hearts.
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FRIDAY JUNE 29 (9:30PM)
I hope you can understand why I haven't blogged in the last few days.  I am sitting here in the room alone with Andrew as he is heavily sedated and on his last leg of his journey here on earth.  The past few days have been an extremely emotional and physically draining.  Relatives have started coming in from all over the country.  Yesterday, Uncle Chan Soo, Aunties Jeannie and Cindy came in from the west coast.  And of course my brother and Andrew's favorite, Uncle Albert and Auntie Jennifer and cousin Margot came in as well.  Many tears were shed as they said there final hellos and goodbyes.

Today, was the toughest day.  This morning Jennifer and I had the difficult task, that no parent should have to say to their children, to tell Andrew there is nothing else the doctors can do and that he is dying.
Andrew was semi lucid and opened his eyes ever so slowly to hear us.  We asked if he understood the situation and whether he knew he would go into the arms of Jesus as passes from this ever so temporary earth and go into eternal glory with God.  He nodded yes.  We knew going into transplant that Andrew had given his life to Jesus Christ and understood what John 3:16 says in the Bible:

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son (Jesus Christ), that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.    

Andrew understood where he was going.  He may not have had a lifetime to grow in his faith, but he acted out his faith in so many ways!  I will elude to this later.
We later asked if he was scared and he nodded and told him to not be.  We told him Jesus is waiting with open arms and he would be smiling in his perfect body glorifying God in eternity!  We told him not to hold on for us and that his family would be okay.  We told him we didn't want him to suffer and that it was okay to goto Jesus.  He nodded!


Andrew was being so brave as he tried to hold off more pain meds to stay somewhat lucid to "see" his friends and family.  That's what kind of strong boy he is!  Jenn and I believe he has hung on so far because of others!  With that being said, he had his Hinsdale Central boys come by: Ryan, Cameron, Andy, Marc,  Jonathon and Ritchie.  The next thing that happened blew me away!!!  We told Andrew his friend from Central were here and from his eyes being closed, HIS EYES FLEW WIDE OPEN AND HE SMILED!!!  HE HASN'T SHOWN ANY EMOTIONS BUT PAIN ON HIS FACE THE PAST MONTH IN ICU AND HE SMILED TODAY!!!!!  
Andrew smiling at his friends!

The emotion was palpable and real.  The tears shed for Andrew were of sadness because they were losing a selfless and wonderful friend.  I eluded to Andrew's faith played out in his actions, well we heard the stories of Andrew helping others and making people smile.  As a father, I am so happy to hear the impact he had on others!  It's been unbelievable the testimonies about Andrew making others smile, feel comfortable and just helping others out!  If you look closely at Andrew's chest in the picture, it is the medal Ryan (his best friend and part of the Park Family) won in his huge regional soccer tournament, which was dedicated to Andrew before the tournament!  The energy required to keep his eyes open and smile for the guys, considering he is heavily sedated and medicated, is incredible.  He also tried lifting his head to greet them!  I explained to the boys, although they are sad for Andrew's imminent passing, that Andrew knows where he is going, into the arms of Jesus.  I told them regardless of their religious beliefs, my hope would they would find the peace and grace that comes from knowing Jesus Christ.  It was wonderful as we joined hands and prayed in Jesus Name Andrew would be at peace and comfort, void of fear and worry.  
The next surprise came when Andrew woke back up after the boys left and looked at me.  I asked Andrew for a kiss and he puckered up, I kissed him and he SMILED AT ME!!!!!!  I will never forget that kiss and smile.  It was as if Andrew was saying Dad, it's okay, I will be okay.  He proceeded to pucker up for Grandma and Grandpa, Jennifer, Yun and his sisters.  He was so cute as he lied  there with his lips all ready to smooch.  He made everyone's day!  The Park side of the family all showed up: Auntie Sunny, cousin Sophia, Auntie Tina, Uncle Dom, Baby D, Uncle Richard and Auntie Jeannie and baby Anderson.  Andrew so loves his Aunts and Uncles!  He loved Baby D and the little cousins! But the Uncle and Aunt he loves the most is Uncle Albert and Auntie Jennifer.  The blessing of what those two have done for the kids over the years cannot be repaid!!!

There was some levity as well during the day.  We talked about Andrew's taste for Cheetoes and how he always had a stash of chips, mints, gum, candy and gatorade always at the ready in his back pack. We spoke of how Andrew would have as much Hooter's wings in heaven without he fear of pancreatitis.  Most of the family's funny and heartwarming stories were always associated with food!  We talked of how Andrew and his Grandfather (ha-bah-ghee) would be able to play unlimited golf in heaven and have as many 10th hole foot long hotdogs;-)  We tried to laugh and celebrate his life today as well.  But I know it was particularly tough for my mom and dad.  I have never seen my dad cry like he did!  You just don't see first generation Korean men do that.  It showed how much my dad loves Andrew!

More visitors came and left and Jennifer and I are exhausted!  But with the help of my best friends Dan, Don and Pastor Michael, I made it through this incredibly difficult yet joyous day.  These men understand that you need not speak to a person that is grieving, but  just be there for them.  Just be.  

Again, no one should have to tell their kids they are dying, but on the other hand, I have the honor to pass my son to his Heavenly Father who has and always will love him more than I could ever have.  So with that reality, I have a modicum of piece in my heart.  Again the peace that Philippians 4:6-7 speaks of:

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.  And the peace of God, which transcends all understandingwill guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

As I am looking at my sick child, I have divergent feelings.  On one hand I am sad that Andrew is suffering and broken, but on the other hand, I am glad he will be in eternal peace.  I know there will be many day ahead after Andrew is gone where it will be painful for our family, but I know God will not forsake us or leave us.  Hebrews 13:5:

“...Never will I leave you  never will I forsake you.”
One of Andrew's friends asked why Andrew?  And I replied why not.  Andrew lived a "full" life in his 17 years here on earth.  I believe he was put here to bless others.  I don't know if you remember, but one constant prayer I have had for the kids throughout their lives is that they would bless others!  Well, Andrew did that.  


Prayer Request:

-Pray Andrew would be at peace as he goes to Jesus.  Pray he would feel no pain!

-Pray for Jennifer, Yun and myself that we would have the strength to be there for Bry and Emily and that we would be able to grieve in a healthy fashion.

-Pray for my parents and family as they grieve and try to process Andrew's imminent passing and ultimately his death.

***As far as funeral arrangements, Jenn, Yun and I will decide on how to celebrate and memorialize this life.  Please respect the decisions of our family.  We will try to have a intimate gathering for family only and then a celebration service for the throng of loved ones of Andrew.  

Love You All!
Joe

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Beauty & the Beast: Seeing Jesus in the Story


I know the final chapter ended with a long-awaited wedding and those of you who followed the long-winded story (read HERE) are left concluding that we have lived "happily ever after" and while that is true to some degree it is also patently untrue. I feel responsible for giving some people out there a false hope - that if you find LOVE you will find ultimate happiness and have fulfilled your purpose in life. This is only partially correct.

French novelist, George Sand once said, “There is only one happiness in life, to love and be loved.”  Amen.  Sand recognized that we all have a profound instinct to love and be loved and I believe God, in His goodness, designed us in this way that we might seek Him - the one who is love (1 Jn 4:8). And when we love Him and when we are loved by Him to echo John Piper – we are most satisfied and the Creator is most glorified. Sadly, most of this world is deceived into thinking that ultimate love can be found in a person instead of God Himself. This view will only result in massive disappointment. No matter how happy the union - no marriage can bear this gigantic burden. The earthly marriage was only meant to picture and project the divine union - not redefine or replace it. (Eph 5:31-32)

I think our universal longing for a transcendent love becomes more obvious when you observe the striking similarities between secular love songs and spiritual worship songs (see video below). You will find there is very little difference between the two – however one is a misplaced hope in a person and the other is a living hope in a loving God. Each recognizes the need for love – but only one holds the ultimate solution.

The Bible tells us that in the beginning we were in a perfect love relationship with God and nothing was lacking. But alas, that perfect love relationship was broken by sin. In essence, Adam and Eve did not believe that God loved them, and they sinned and we have all inherited that sin. Therefore, we are not sinners because we sin. We sin because we are sinners. This is now our very nature - and we are utterly lost and broken and we cannot approach God in our sin. We would be consumed in an instant in the awesome presence of His holiness.

But there is hope. Since that day, God has been on a relentless quest of love. He pursues us. He pursues us with an unbreakable and an eternal love, and His end desire is to restore that perfect union that was lost in the beginning. But unlike my pathetic love story, He did not produce a single amaryllis to prove His love – every plant and planet and all of creation stands as proof of His great love for us. He did not scrounge together a scrapbook over a few years to testify of His enduring love – He provided 66 books spanning thousands of years as a testament of His enduring love. Contrary to popular belief, the Bible is not a book of “do’s” and “don’ts”, it is ultimately a story of love. A story about a divine love for you and me. 

This is why the Bible opens with a marriage (Gen 2) and closes with a wedding (Rev 21). This is why in the prophecies of Jeremiah we see the despair found in the brokenness of a divine marriage and in the poetry of the Song of Solomon we see the unadulterated joy found in an earthly one. This is why in the book of Hosea we see a man and a woman play out a heart-wrenching story of unrequited love, and in the book of Ruth we see a man and a woman play out a heart-warming story of unconditional love. This is why a wedding is the site of Jesus’ first miracle and the setting of his last parables. 

Make no mistake, when Jesus begins his ministry on earth he clearly presents himself as the bridegroom, to pay the bride-price to redeem us by dying for our sins - in order to restore that once perfect union with Him. Marriage literally begins and ends as God's idea. It is God's creation, God's institution, and God’s glory.

And if we enter into his promised covenant of love by faith, then what was lost in a garden on earth, will be fully restored at a wedding in heaven. Our joy will be complete because we will truly understand what it means to “love and be loved” and we shall "know him, as we have been fully known" (1 Cor 13:12), and “God will be most glorified in us, because we will be most satisfied in Him”.

This is why “Beauty” [JESUS} became a “Beast” [lowly man]. (Phil 2) This is why beasts [mankind] can be made beautiful [like JESUS]. This is why the Gospel is the greatest love story ever told.

In His Grace,

Peter & Kim

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Urgent Prayers for Andrew

Dear Friends, below is an update from Joe (Andrew's dad) on the CT scan. Things look very bleak right now for Andrew and they are preparing to say "good-bye". Please pray. We are still praying for a miracle but if the Lord should choose to take His child home please pray for comfort, hope and the peace of Christ for Andrew and his family.
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FROM JOE PARK: It's with an utterly broken, sad and grieving heart that the c.t. scan showed Andrew's lungs are worse than 3 weeks ago.  The scan shows more murkiness and there is a an absence of tissue in the lung that may be indicative of an infection or a healed one.
The team basically said they have done whatever they can to help his lungs.  Dr. Sonali said he has little chance of surviving and we need to focus on his comfort.  I asked if we are at the point of letting him go and there are no other option and she said that if we let go know, it's a acceptable decision.  Basically,
Andrew will need a miracle!  Sonali brought up putting a tube in his neck, so he could be more comfortable than the breathing tube down his throat.  Being on a breathing tube down his throat for such an extended time gets uncomfortable.  It also may allow him to be more lucid and communicate with us.  It will possible allow his loved ones to say goodbye.  It also can give him time to turn around, although unlikely.

I met with Jim the chaplain and we discussed what is best for Andrew and the possible things we will need to do before we say goodbye.  This is all overwhelming to say the least, but these questions and scenarios need to be addressed.

I ask you from the bottom of my heart that Andrew is at peace, comfortable and not scared.  I don't want my boy to be this way.

I have asked my brother and close family members to come as soon as they can.  I will tell you when it is appropriate for people to visit.  Until then, PLEASE DO NOT ASK IF YOU CAN COME.  PLEASE RESPECT OUR FAMILY IN THIS TIME OF GRIEF.  

I can't reconcile what is going on, but I trust Jesus is comforting Andrew as I write this!  If I have to let go, I know he will on to be with the Lord and rest in eternal peace.

I HAVE A SPECIAL PRAYER REQUEST.  PLEASE PRAY ANDREW WILL AT SOME POINT BEFORE HE PASSES, BE ABLE TO SAY SOMETHING AND BE ABLE TO COMMUNICATE WITH HIS FAMILY.  

PLEASE COVER THE PARK FAMILY IN PRAYER IN THIS TURBULENT TIME.

Grieving,
JOE