OTR Testimony - Esther Park

September 1, 2017 by David An

The only thing I can think of how to start this is to say how incredibly thankful I am to have gone on this trip. I’m so glad that I had such a great experience as my first missions trip. All the relationships formed, worships/morning devotions attended, and every second of prayer have impacted me.

One thing that I think God was really trying to teach me was to have confidence in the Gospel. I think one of the main reasons I was so nervous to do street evangelism at first was because I felt like I had to say all the right things in order to change people. What I didn’t know at the time is how much power the Gospel has and it was not by my own strength or skills that would change lives, but God’s.

If you know me, you probably know that I’m not usually the most outgoing person, so the idea of talking about God to strangers on the street seemed daunting. Despite my initial fear, I found that people were generally very open to speak with me and in result, I was able to have some great conversations with people.

One specific person that I talked to was on my mind for nearly the whole trip. Her name was Michelle. Awkwardly and nervously walking towards her, all I could think about was how I didn’t want to talk to her. I automatically judged her by what her outward appearance and mentally “gave up” thinking she was not going to be accepting of my message. All I can say is that God definitely knows how to prove me wrong.

I was really able to get to know her more as she honestly and vulnerably told her story. The more she shared, the more I realized how spoiled and privileged I was. She was a mother of five with a bed-ridden mother in law. She was struggling to work as much as she could, but had to come home 3 times a day just to take care of her mother in law. Not only that, but she was struggling with her own health problems, and every step she had to take hurt her immensely.

I can’t even begin to imagine how hard life must be for her. And even through all her hardships, she was trying to fight through her doubts about God and what he was doing in her life. I was glad to be able to pray for her and to receive her contact information.

That night I invited her to the church service we were having the next day and was excited when it seemed like she would come. I was later discouraged when I found out she didn’t come. I still had the same selfish attitude where I thought that God wasn’t working just because things weren’t going the way I pictured. So, I learned that we can only plant the seeds and let God do the rest. I have to understand that there is a higher power in charge and we can’t expect things to happen by our own power.

This trip really encouraged me to not be ashamed of the Gospel, but instead want to share the great news! I hope that the lessons learned will still be clear to me as they were a few weeks ago, and that I can carry them out into my life.

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