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Deferring Trust August 7, 2006

Posted by peterong in Ministry Update, Rants.
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“Commit your way to the LORD; trust in him and he will do this: He will make your righteousness shine like the dawn, the justice of your cause like the noonday sun.” Psalm 37:5-6

This week has been a tough one, I still have not found a part-time position in Syracuse and I just found out that my start up time for the Asian American Laity Project is now almost one year later than what I had hoped to start. The initiation of the project is being pushed back for another season. This could be the beginning of a temporary pause of my involvement in ministry. I am filled with a mosaic of emotions because on one hand, my prevalent passion and desire is to serve and be used by God for kingdom work but on the hand I have peace because I know this is a time of pause until provision arrives. I am also put into a different gear of pursuing and sharing this vision of my minstry more diligently . Part of me wants to challenge, part of me wants to wait, part of me wants to go out to share this burden and in the darkest reality, part of me wants to quit.

Quit and surrender to God.

As Jamie and I went to Eastern Hills Bible Church this Sunday, the sermon series is on Summer Psalms and it was a time of remembering that a year ago, Jamie and I were ready to get married. I had friends to say good-bye to, boxes to pack, a U-Haul to rent and so many major changes in my life. I had just finished up my role as director of the Herald Youth Center.

As Pastor Doug preached on Psalm 37 about worrying and trusting (you can download the sermon here) and Jamie and prayed with our hands cupped and trusting in Him despite what seems to be difficult time. We are making time for us to regard it with a sense of purpose in the midst of this apparent absence. It reminded me of the paradox of absence, I once preached that the greatest moment of history was the act of absence. That the moment when Mary came to the tomb and found that it was empty…it was moment of continued brokenness for Mary as she didn’t realize the blessing of this moment…it was an act of freedom. That in what seems like a moment of nuanced beauty that we find ourselves and it is in this moment that I will continue to lean on Him during this period.

A year ago I was developing and pioneering a part-time project called the Asian American Laity project as an Associate Director at Pastoral and Laity Ministries to start a ministry to build, equip, advance and renew the lay leaders of the Asian American Church. I believe that this is an important ministry in developing content and nourishment to the those who serve in the Asian American church. This came from years of serving at the Herald Youth Center and was heard countless stories of lay leaders who are serving faithfully but are so famished for a sense of community, vision, and direction. I was hoping to network and develop a partnership with seminaries and prominent leaders and pastors to provide valuable content to the lay leadership.
But now I stand and look over this past year and having so many opportunities to speak at churches, conferences, rallies and coffeehouses. It was a good year to focus on developing my ministry of teaching and evangelism and yet, found that it has also been a time of deep pause for me to challenge myself to trust. To believe that this vision for the ministry is to developing in His time. But how do I ask for help?
So I am going to be in a new push for funding in this month and I have this gospel confidence that God’s timing is perfect. I have enjoyed a sense of a sabbatical from NYC ministry and focusing on my own identity. Jamie and I are moving ahead in our next season in Syracuse to serve at a church where we can develop our common vision for evangelism, missions work and building authentic communities.

Lastly, I wanted to take this moment to thank many of you who have been so faithful in sacrificially giving of your finances, your time and most of all your friendship to me. It is something that I realized is an act of grace. An act of such resemblance of God’s grace in my life. I realize that I don’t deserve your friendship yet, I am blessed and I want to thank you for this.

I am going to refrain from my specific ministry updates till Wednesday. Because I want to be more sensitive to your time.

Thank you again.

Remaining in Him,

Peter O

To Financially Support the ministry please send checks (make payable to PaLM) to:
PaLM
48-19 196th Street
Fresh Meadows, New York
11365-1316
please mark memo: Asian American Laity Ministries or Peter Ong
All donations are tax-deductible

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