Wednesday, December 30, 2009

What makes U.S. missionary activist Robert Park tick?

More insights on Robert Park, as written by PSALT, a New Jersey-based organization that assists North Koreans:

Please pray for our brother Robert Park who is currently detained in North Korea. …Many are wondering how to digest the situation. We know that Robert's faith is genuine, passionate and wholehearted. He loves the Lord, and that God has stirred his heart deeply for North Korea. He was never one to be shackled by conventions, norms or others' schedules.

Robert made the dangerous journey because of his passion and obedience in faith to what he understood his calling to be. As friends and co-laborers of Robert we may, of course, find ourselves shocked and pray urgently for his safe return. But we must try also to avoid being distracted by Robert's unusual act and see past the confusion, debate and sensationalism. If Robert was going into North Korea out of curiosity, or for celebrity, we might indeed see his actions as reckless.

Instead, it was Robert's searing heart for North Korea (people, leadership, as a nation) and his vision to share the Gospel with his last breath that moved him across that frozen river knowing full well the consequences of his actions. Instead of engaging in debate, we need to intercede in prayer -- for Robert, for God's hand to move through his action, for God's divine purpose to be realized.

Many folks working in North Korea-related ministry or human rights movements not only want to help make a difference but would really like to witness a successful outcome -- this is natural. Everyone has a different calling and the degree of 'safety' in ones work does not necessarily make one's actions more noble and another's ignoble.

So, as we pray for Robert, we should focus on the reason why Robert made this journey, and the hope we share in for the people of North Korea. Perhaps we will never fully know, nor may we ever comprehend the full impact of his act of obedience -- however, we do know that His ways are not our ways; and each of us have a calling to follow faithfully, though the paths may be vastly different.

No comments: