March 2013


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Today, we stopped at the ceramic store to pick up this watering jar that my daughter and wife made together. When I saw it, I immediately fell in love with it. For it has so much significance to my belief that our God is intimately involved in my daughter’s life. Some of you have heard the story already but it is worth repeating.

When Joelle was only four I believe, we started practicing listening prayer. It was a simple exercise in which after reading scripture and talking to God in response to the text, we would stop and give God a chance to speak to us.then we would record whatever happened. Sometimes a simple words like be compassionate or He loves me she would hear. Other times an image would come to mind, like stars in the sky. We would keep a journal of these things.

One day Joelle told me these words God told her, I water you with my love for you are my flower. I still believe that was a spiritual landmark for the future of my daughter’s journey. The picture you see is of a water pitcher that my wife and Joelle designed. It is a great reminder for our family that God reaches in to speak, to move, to strengthen, to shape our lives.

Illuminating grace brings light to us in our darkness and provides hope. Such grace is given through creation, through the written word, through people and through the still small voice we hear in prayer. It is not always easy to hope, be it you are nine or ninety. We look back on His manifestations in our lives and that gives us a boost in our ability to trust His working in us today. My hope is that these words is exactly that for Joelle in whatever she faces ahead.

It is all a part of His working grace within us.

Has there been those moments you look back on to strengthen you trust?

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So it has been a few days now since my first trip having a book table to promote my book. As I am unpacking my dirty laundry, I will attempt to unpack what the experience meant to me.

It was awkward. Going to a conference where I only new a few folks and not being a speaker of workshop leader, which I am more accustomed to, I felt out of place. The first one was a last minute opportunity and my book table was a last minute attachment at best. They were kind to let me set it up and I made a few sales but I didn’t know what to do with myself for the most part. The second conference I had a set up and a place for the books but it was definitely different. I was the only one promoting a book. Other displays were colleges and types of ministries. So initially I felt a bit square peg.

It was bonding. The few folks I did know I had the chance to make strong connections with. We caught up and talked about ways I can come to their part of the woods and speak about my book. Some talked of struggles and others talked of glory. New folks I got to talk with about the book were very interested in Grace and had writing ideas of their own. One gentleman, James Choung, spoke and led prayer in ways I thought only I did in the circle of Asian American churches. We shared a meal and found a kindred spirit between us.

It was weird. I reconnected with an acquaintance I haven’t seen in ten years names Stan Inouye who has a wife named Mary Jane and an adopted daughter named Joelle. His sister’s name is Arlene. MJ’s sister’s name is Eileen. I am stunned. I think I found my twin. Stan is about 5’4″. I am 6’2″.

It was fruitful. I didn’t sell as many books as I would have liked but as I said before, made good connections and strong possibilities for future partnership. Every person who took a book I asked to give me feedback. I hope to receive thoughtful and challenging (and encouraging) words from them.

Doing this thing of getting the book there is teaching me much, stretching me. I am learning to be bold and ask for opportunities. I am finding confidence in the Divine script that I and Resisting Grace are a part of.

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Last Sunday we dedicated Resisting Grace at my home church for God’s glory and His Kingdom growth. As the pastor prayed, I was so moved and reminded that it is a object I am to steward. He prayed that the book would minister to those in need of grace (isn’t that everyone?) and that God would be honored. Sometimes I get too worried about results or the success of the book. It was a good place for me to place myself in surrender again as a living sacrifice.

Next week I will be in LA at the Asian American Intervarsity Staff conference. They will sell my book at the conference and I am looking forward to seeing some old friends there. Then I will have a booth at the Asian AMerican Leadership Conference and seek also to get the word out about Resisting Grace. I will have a video promo and a couple other videos that will be played at the booth.(you can see them on the resisting grace youtube channel-Draw on Me, Define Me, Silence) I am not speaking at these conferences, just representing. That’s a bit different for me.

Please pray that more and more people will get exposed to the book and that it will minister deeply.