When we finished the Sabbath worship according to the worship order, our joy was beyond expression. Thus, Pakistan church started; and attendance book began to be recorded, and so did the contents of offering and tithes. Before long, branch churches will be implanted in other cities, too.
Once an elder, who had thrown himself into overseas mission, said to me, “Overseas mission cannot be carried out without being ready to be of ‘a great multitude’.” When he said so I heard him carelessly. Not until I flied to Los Angeles and kept the Sabbath, did I know the overseas gospel workers’ efforts.
One week’s stay in L.A. church was enough for me to know their efforts. I shed tears because I regretted having not known fellow workers’ troubles, and because I was moved by their earnestness; though nobody acknowledged them, they worked hard, fixing their eyes only on God.
My loving brothers and sisters were not afraid of death, by which I was consoled and encouraged. I returned to Korea, as making up my mind to participate in the overseas mission fearlessly.
It was not long since I came back from L.A. that I heard about Pakistan. The news from Pakistan was very amazing.
Relying on God only, I and Pastor Noah Park got on a plane for Pakistan via Bangkok on January 8. Though not familiar with Pakistan, we were filled with the Spirit. The thought of evangelists, who would go out to find the lost heavenly family in freezing weather about -10℃, supported us and brothers and sisters’ prayers gave us strength.
When we passed through Bangkok, we tried to get some materials for Pakistan. But we couldn’t get any. What we knew about Pakistan was only that its population is one hundred and twenty million, its land is four times as large as Korea, its religion is Islam, the city we were going to visit is one of big cities in Pakistan, and the family of Lawrence who attended our church in Seoul would meet our plane.
After over 10 hours’ flight, we arrived at the airport. The night view the city from the plane was like that of Korea 30 years ago. There was no neon signs, no street lamps, no headlights, no other airplanes on the runway, but only some soldiers. On the rummage table, there was no fluoroscope, that we had to open all our bags one by one. “Ah, we’ve arrived in Pakistan at last.”
Lawrence’s family came to greet us; they were his mother Mrs. George, his youngest brother Shezard, his sister Nina and her husband. They looked broad-minded, gentle and noble. Though they didn’t know well about the truths, they were kind to us and we could feel they were also our spiritual family. It took us about 30 minutes by car to get to their house.
Stores by the street were small, the road was not well paved and the pick up car was old. But the sight was not strange to me; it reminded me of my childhood for it was like Korea 30 years ago. Especially, the generosity of Mrs. George’ family compensated for their country’s bad economic conditions. That night we could sleep as if at home.
Pakistan was likely to be blessed much. People were warmhearted and kind. They listened to our message sincerely. In Pakistan there were more Christians than we thought. But they were disappointed at the priests and didn’t trust the existing churches. Many of them did not belong to the churches, and only studied the Bible in groups. Especially there were many Bible study groups for youths.
We had chance to share God’s words of truth with over 100 persons of four groups. We might be able to share the words with hundreds of persons if we intended to do. Needless to say, it would take them more time and efforts to acknowledge the truth. Anyway, we could preach the truth to the Pakistani Christians without difficulty; a certain church invited us to preach a sermon.
While we stayed in Pakistan, we came to understand why God sent us to this strange land. God made Mrs. George’s family ready for the mission of Pakistan. Mrs. George was like Lydia, a dealer in purple cloth from the city of Thyatira; she was faithful to God and respected by her relatives and neighbors.
Everyday we were busy meeting new faces. There were many places to visit and many people to teach. But, what was the most urgent matter was to help George’s family to stand firm in the truth. In the first several days we concentrated our efforts on Mrs. George and then taught other family and close relatives who showed interest in the Bible.
Among them, seven persons were baptized; they understood the words about the Spirit and the Bride and converted to Church of God. Our God led us to spread the words into good soil for the gospel work in Pakistan. All the seven were highly-educated, that they could speak English and settled down, having their own jobs. Unless God prepared these people, how could we plan to preach the gospel in Pakistan? God opened the way to the overseas mission like this. God made the water of life flow into this land of desert. An old history of King Cyrus came up into our minds; didn’t King Cyrus dry up the Euphrates River and entered Babylon as if he walked on high way? ‘How easily it’s done, if God plans something!’
The Sabbath in Pakistan was special, for it was the first worship service to proclaim the beginning of Pakistan church. And next week, nine members worshiped God including the newly-baptized seven brothers and sisters. When the holy name of Father was praised on another part of the earth, how much did our Father and the righteous spirits rejoice? The new song we could sing together was only No.17 ‘The Last Secret’. At the beginning of worship and at the end of it we sang that new song only. I and Pastor Noah prayed in English if God opened our mouth, and if not, in Korean. Our prayers, however, were earnest beyond language barriers. ‘The Prayer of Our Wishes’ was prayed in Korean.
When we finished the Sabbath worship according to the worship order, our joy was beyond expression. Thus, Pakistan church started; an attendance book began to be recorded, and so did the contents of offering and tithes. Before long, branch churches will be implanted in other cities, too. In the time of the Early Church 3,000 men received the truth when the 120 saints made themselves ready. Like this, the overseas mission will be completed when we, who were called in advance, make ourselves ready.
We were invited to several Bible groups. But we didn’t have enough time to lead them all to God; we had to be satisfied just with the fact that we arose the curiosity about the truth and prepared the ground for studying the truth.
One day we visited one of Mrs. George’s relatives. While we were having a cup of tea, 20 villagers came into the yard to hear the truth.
Sitting on the yard, we delivered the truth under the subject of “The secret of forgiveness”. Seeing their eyes, we had compassion on them. Women put on veils like the times of Jesus. Though the stars were the same as in Korea, I felt as if in a fairy land. We had to leave one hour later. They didn’t know yet the secrets of God. Sometimes they nodded and sometimes they discussed in whispers about what was not understood well. I prayed God to bless them: ‘Father, isn’t it possible to find all the rest of 144,000 in Pakistan? Shall I stay here and preach until You come?’ We spent that day with joy for preaching and with concern about their spirits as well.
During a short time, our spiritual brothers and sisters came to know Father and Mother. It was like a desert turned into a good land; it was a miracle of our God. We delivered heavenly Mother’s hope to offer “The Prayer of Our Wishes” in one tongue. Then, every evening they practiced the prayer in Korean. When all our heavenly family gather, we will offer this prayer in one language. They practiced Father’s name again and again to exactly pronounce. We couldn’t see their efforts without tears.
I became eager to stay here and help them if God allowed me. But I had to return to Korea, committing them to Father and Mother who would raise and save them. How many tears would Father and Mother have shed until we could call them clearly, correcting our childlike pronunciation? I called Father and Mother toward starry night of Pakistan.
“Father AHN SAHNG HONG, Mother!”
Then I asked, “Am I right? If wrong, correct my pronunciation.”
17days passed without difficulties. God prepared all thing and we only walked the highway. Different food or customs didn’t matter. Though my shoes were worn out, it was no problem. What we were most concerned about was our brothers and sisters’ spiritual security.
Coming back from Pakistan, Father’s word came into my mind anew, “The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few.” As the accorded faith of 120 saints brought on the work of the Holy Spirit of the former rain, our accorded faith is now important. If our faith doesn’t come up with that of 120 saints of the Early Church, the work of the Holy Spirit will not occur. We are like-minded in finding our lost brothers all over the world. Our one mind must be shown to God by deeds. Our God could bring 3,000 persons to be baptized through Apostle Peter’s one-time sermon. In this age, too, God can gather 144,000 within a few days. Then, why not? I think it’s because of the lack of our faith. Still we do not leave worldly wealth, honor and power. Still we do not practice love for brothers.
‘I must let my brothers and sister know this fact when I arrive in Korea.’
The more our plane was close to Korea, the more I’d like to hear Mother’s voice and see brothers and sisters.