What an incredible time of fellowship we had on February 18 as we launched LEGENDS! It was certainly a treat to hear Paul Leon’s and Paul Cho’s respective stories and how they come from different worlds. Yet, through God, they came together with a unified heart to do the Lord’s work and advance his Kingdom through the Illumination Foundation. They each had an incredible journey of self-discovery as they encountered God which led them to understand what their own identities were in Him. We then began this exploration of who we are made to be through our sharing time with each other.
As a fellowship, this is an important first step in this journey that we are embarking on. We all need to recognize that it is a process and we will need to rely on each other to share the load and to lift each other up. As Proverbs 27:17 reads “As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.”
On this journey we will be challenged and tested…as I was recently. It’s been 8 years since I’ve come back to the Lord and I thought I had matured in my faith journey. I was confident I had found my identity in Christ. Turns out, I still have a lot to learn! Many of you know my wife and her story. A friend of ours, Tim Lee, is a filmmaker and wanted to document her story to share God’s grace and His power of redemption. I was interviewed, and at the time, I recall feeling very confident that I could openly share my story without shame or embarrassment. I even said that on camera! After all, Maribel and I have told our story hundreds of times in different settings. Well, last week, the trailer was released and I freaked out! I realized that I was confident about sharing our story because we were only sharing with believers. There was already common ground and Christians are used to hearing about lives being transformed. We also shared with mostly smaller groups and when in large groups, we had many friends around for support. This, however, was going out to the world! It’s on the Internet! I have non-Christian friends who may see this on social media. There are people who I work with that may see the trailer without the full context of the story. What does this mean for my image with the community and people I work with? Are they going to judge me or my wife without seeing the full documentary? Will this damage some of my relationships? My identity was called into question.
As I meditate on my thoughts the week after the trailer was released, I realized I was like Peter. “You aren’t one of his disciples too, are you?” He denied it saying “I am not.” (John 18:25) Peter denied Christ three times that night. It made me question my own faith. If my identity was in Christ, should I not have faith that he has a plan? Would He not use what we have for good? Should I care what people think? Would my part of the story make an impact somehow? I really don’t know. What I do know though is that I’ve prayed about it more. I’ve talked to God more, asking Him for answers. I’ve asked Him to take away my insecurities. I’ve asked Him for his blessings and protection. Maybe that is what it’s about.
I am privileged to be able to embark on this journey with some incredible men of Newsong! We’ll face our personal trials and tribulations that will test our faith but we will stand together to pull each other through it. God never promised our lives would be smooth sailing. If it was, we would never need Him or acknowledge his existence. Let us call out to Him together and in doing so we will find our own identity.
As I am typing this, I see a devotional card by my computer screen that my wife gave me a few years ago. It reads, “Lord, I invite you to be enthroned in every area of my life today and every day – Amen.”
I hope you will join us again on March 25th to hear and share stories for “LEGENDS Among Us!”