Kim Jong Un, North Korea’s youthful dictator pushes his nation towards the brink of war. Threatening a “‘preemptive nuclear attack’ on the United States, a ‘final destruction’ of South Korea, and a ‘nuclear attack’ on Tokyo” leaves much of the world holding its collective breath. While we should pray that war does not break out, we should also remember that even bullies and police states cannot keep God from revealing His love in amazing ways.
Colossians 4:3,4—At the same time, pray also for us that God may open a door to us for the message, to speak the mystery of the Messiah, for which I am in prison, so that I may reveal it as I am required to speak.
Dr. James Kim is a businessman with a huge vision for providing education to North Koreans. While interviewed by Sheila Shuller Coleman he stated:
I worked with the communist conflict in China and in North Korea for about 27 years. When I arrived in the communist country of China and North Korea, I declared myself I’m not capitalist, I’m not communist, but I’m a love-ist. When they asked me what is the meaning of a love-ist? I replied, Jesus-ist! I am just demonstrating Jesus’ love, as He shared to others. I give love to the people who never had the kind of love as Jesus Christ’s love.
Kim, a South Korean and now U.S. citizen, traveled to North Korea in 1998 to donate food. His intentions were misunderstood and he was arrested by the secret police and accused of being a spy for the CIA. For six weeks he was imprisoned and threatened with death. Yet as he shares his story he relates being full of joy. When his captors tortured him, he did not feel any pain. When they asked him to prepare his will he bequeathed his body for medical study in Pyongyang and asked that his organs be used for transplants. Then he wrote his relatives that “in the event of my death, don’t seek revenge.” Revenge was unnecessary for “My ‘crime’ was demonstrating God’s love and I was merely misunderstood.”
When Kim Jong Il heard what Dr. Kim wrote in his will he was so amazed that he met personally with him. He asked him what he wanted and learned of his dream to build schools in North Korea to help the people. Amazingly, he was released from prison. Through his fundraising efforts and governmental permission the Pyongyang University of Science and Technology was founded. In 2011, while the colleges and universities across North Korea were closed, his university remained open. Christian faculty members from the United States and Europe model God’s love in a place where worshiping Christ is forbidden.
In a dark dungeon where most perish, God blessed the courage of a man determined at all cost to shine as a light. Dr. Kim is a reminder to us all that what matters is that we give the love of Christ no matter the conditions or cost; for as Paul so nobly noted, “For me, living is Christ and dying is gain” (Php. 1:21). Are you shining?
©2013 Daniel York ARR. Reveration is the weekly devotional ministry of First Cause. If you would like to receive these devotionals go to www.firstcause.org and click on the “Click here to receive weekly devotionals” box. Unlimited permission to copy this devotional without altering text or profiteering is allowed subject to inclusion of this copyright notice.
Ecclesiastes 12:10-The Teacher sought to find delightful sayings and to accurately write words of truth. (Holman CSB)