For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future (Jeremiah 29:11).
When a trapeze artist jumps to catch the next trapeze bar, he cannot hang on to the old bar while trying to grab the new one. This would result with him having one hand clinging to each bar. He would be trapped in the middle, unable to move. Instead, he lets go of the old bar and with both hands free, flies through the air, ready catch the new bar. In the same manner, we can’t jump into the future by holding to the past.
Alice and I have had to learn how to lovingly let go of the past. While we cannot cling to the past, we can genuinely cherish the wonderful memories. We have always tried to be fully prepared to live in the present, to God’s glory. This is what we have tried to do during our past six months at International Lutheran Church. Now, it is time for us to say farewell and reach toward the future.
As we walk the future steps of our life’s journey through prayer, we ask God to help us to do it with courage, excellence, poise, and perseverance. What do we mean?
Courage: Living with courage is resistance to fear. Courage recognizes fear but proceeds in the face of it with calmness and firmness. Such courage is possible when we realize that God is our singular source of security. Armed with this God-given courage, we are empowered to boldly pursue our God-given potential.
Excellence: Self-discipline helps us to pursue our Godgiven potential by using all of our abilities of body, mind and spirit to the ultimate, for His glory and honor. We want the quality of our character to be one of excellence no matter what the situation.
Poise: We want our lives to demonstrate confidence, selfesteem, composure, and self-control in any situation. Poise keeps us true to God and to ourselves. We won’t try to be someone we are not. We choose to be authentic as we project Godly integrity, calmness and stability. Poise is a choice. We want to choose to be poised in every situation.
Perseverance: Baptism gives us hope. Our Christian hope fuels the strength to bear the pressures of daily living, resulting in a life of significance.
Courage + Excellence + Poise + Perseverance = Significant Godly Life
The short summary below explains how we, as Christians, can remember to have a lifetime of significance. We need to remember:
1. Our baptism. (Romans 6:4) 2. All of our sins are forgiven through Christ. (Romans 5:1) 3. We want to obey God’s will in our daily living. (2 Corinthians 9:13) 4. We will bear fruit by the Holy Spirit’s power. (John 15:5) 5. We will aim to pray without ceasing. (1 Thessalonians 5:17)
God has demonstrated to us that He truly answers prayer. It would be foolish for us not to pray. God’ Word has taught us many principles about prayer. The key now is to act on them. We envision a radical way of living and a radical way of praying. Our job as God’s children is to be a mirror of Jesus. Each time we fail or sin the mirror becomes clouded over and God’s reflection is less clear. Our heart’s desire is for our lives to clearly reflect Jesus and His love.
We hope our lives have been a gift from God to you at ILC. All of us have His promise to share a positive future. Our life in Jesus Christ is the source of significance. As we grasp this unconditional love of God, then serving Him becomes our passion.
Gradually in our lives, we have learned to take attention off ourselves and place it on Him. We are still learning and we know you are, too.
Thank you for the blessings we have received through Jesus Christ and each one of you here at the International Lutheran Church in Seoul, Korea.
In His service,
Pastor Bob and Alice