As one who has been participating in University Bible Fellowship for many years, I’d like to offer my thoughts on some of the points in Joe’s recent open letter to the President of UBF. Continue reading →
In April 2012 I was baptized by full immersion at our local Christian church. It was a wonderful and godly experience. The pastor’s words “You are free from the teachings of one man” still give me much peace and joy. Since then however, I have not returned to church, except for a couple special events. For me, baptism was an end, not a beginning. Baptism was the death of all the undue religious influence on my life. Today I would like to share with our readers a glimpse into my journey back to the church.
Recently someone shared a quote with me
“You own everything that happened to you. Tell your stories. If people wanted you to write warmly about them they should have behaved better.” It is in the same vein as Chesterton’s quote on publication. Chesterton was a journalist first, so this quote carries a lot of authority with it
“In matters of truth the fact that you don’t want to publish something is, nine times out of ten, a proof that you ought to publish it.”
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Love and marriage. A friend from Malaysia made a comment to me yesterday. He said, “In the west people marry who they love. But in the east people love who they marry.” With his latter statement he meant arranged marriages. Last week, my relative from Singapore said to me, “You should not marry the one you love, but marry the one who loves you.” He said this because his dear sister is being very badly hurt by a man she loves after she rejected a prior suitor who dearly loved her. Aren’t such statements interesting? Continue reading →
Scapegoating, Ignatian spiritual practice, and the subversive gospels of Passion Sunday and Good Friday
The recent film Kill the Messenger is based on the true story of a reporter named Gary Webb who worked for a mid-sized newspaper during the 1990’s. By chance, Webb received a document revealing that the federal government supported a trafficker who brought large amounts of drugs into the United States. As Webb investigated the matter, he found evidence that the spread of crack cocaine, an epidemic that blighted American cities during the 1980s, was fueled by operatives of the CIA who sold the drug to support the military operations of the Contra rebels in Nicaragua.
“What did Jesus really mean when He said, ‘Follow Me?’” This is the title of a small pamphlet by David Platt that a friend showed me. I eagerly read it, since “follow me” is repeated at least 17 times by Jesus in the four gospels in the NIV, and implied countless more times. You might not realize it but “Follow me” is the most frequent command Jesus gave. (Incidentally, Jesus did not say even once, “worship me.”)
This pamphlet has three parts:
Part I. The great invitation (Mt 4:19; Mk 1:17).
Part II. The great cost (Lk 9:23).
Part III. The great change (Mt 28:19).
Everyone who does evil hates the light, and will not come into the light for fear that their deeds will be exposed. But whoever lives by the truth comes into the light, so that it may be seen plainly that what they have done has been done in the sight of God. –John 3:20,21
The darkness of UBF is overwhelming. Secrets hide behind nearly every smiling face that offers you so much as a plate of bulgoki. Growing up, every Sunday I went to CBF at the “center.” Even as I child, I always felt like there was something off about UBF people. I never quite felt like I was at home, or that this was my family.
Upon leaving UBF at age 8 with my family, we went to an unnamed evangelical church in the area. It was there that I entered life and finally learned to be a normal human being. For the first time in my young life, I felt like I could fit in with the other boys, the other children, and I learned about God, who Jesus was, and accepted him into my heart as my Lord and savior.
Editorial note: While searching for an old email, I happened to find the first sermon preached at West Loop UBF on Jan 6, 2008. It is over 6 years ago. I feel strange and nostalgic reading it. It reminded me of A Real Testimony by Ben Toh from 1998. UBFers will likely welcome what I wrote and may wonder why I am no longer like that, while exUBFers might suffer from varying degrees of PTSD. The full sermon can be read here. What I copied and pasted below is my personal application, which I preached verbatim. Continue reading →
Here is a somewhat poetical but not completely poetical writing I wrote about what I would tell my Pastor if I thought he would listen. How I want to cry because he shutdown UBF by not listening to his flock because they were younger than him and not telling them the truth about what he really wants them to do and banishing them from the loving presence of the other sheep. UBF Pastors, I am begging you do not close down UBF. I love UBF but I heard UBF facilities are being shutdown on other campuses and maybe my own for which I might weep. I do not think it was because of the sheep trying to become new shepherds. I think……It was you.
The closing testimonies at Campus night last Friday were given by Moses Noah, Jim Rabchuk, and Ron Ward. The title on the program was “Campus mission, my family, and my profession.” The slide presented was the above. I was slightly irritated by this slide, since it ignored family and excluded any mention of Christ. And that was also their point.
Continue reading →