Sarah Kim’s Testimony and Brazil Mission Report, Campinas

by WMD   06-17-2011   0 reads

Key verse, Matthew 3:8, “Produce fruit in keeping with repentance. And do not begin to say to yourselves, ‘We have Abraham as our father.’ For I tell you that out of these stones God can raise up children for Abraham.”

I was born in 1959 as the second child out of four (I have one brother and three sisters). My parents dressed me up like a boy because they wanted to have a son. I hated girlishness and suffered from deep fatalism and an inferiority complex because of my outward appearance thinking I was an ugly doll. Moreover, I became shy and lacked self-confidence because of poverty, and my parent’s frequent fights and discord. To escape from this I studied hard. However, I gave up trying to enter a university, which I had wanted, due to fear and anxiety. Instead, I entered Seoul Educational College. With deep sorrow and despair, I could not concentrate on my studies and was almost kicked out of the school. At that time, a senior in my school urged me to come to God by repenting of my sins in order to have a new life.

In 1980, I followed my friend to UBF and had studied the book of Romans. During the Bible study, I was moved by God’s unfailing love through Jesus and repented of my selfishness, pride, and lust. By God’s grace, I re-entered the University of Foreign Language and began participating in a pioneering ministry. I began to teach the Bible to my classmates and family members. During this time, God gave me a great vision to be a powerful Bible teacher and a missionary based on John 12:24. He also gave me a great privilege to serve the ministry as a full time servant enabling me to raise disciples of Jesus. In 1987, God established a house church with Paulo, who was the ancestor of faith at the University of Kookmin. After marriage, we struggled to keep our life of faith absolutely following the seniors’ good examples. God blessed us with spiritual fruits abundantly along with three smart and pretty daughters.

In 1998, by God’s grace, we were sent out to Brazil at the age of 40. When we saw the realities of this country, such as a high unemployment rate, public insecurity, high prices on and so on, we became anxious. In addition, we had to overcome language barriers and become financially self-supporting. Our money ran out after buying our household goods, so our whole family lived together in a single bedroom apartment. Our children were not able to go to school for six months. Matters became unbearable and we were stressed out. In order to solve our problems, Paulo cried out to God. God had mercy on him and granted him a job as a salesman in a wholesale store after he requested a position by faith. God moved big mountains: the language barrier, financial matters, visa problems, and our children’s education.

In 2003, we again moved, this time to Campinas City, 100 kilometers away from São Paulo, to pioneer the State University of Campinas. In order to rent a house, we needed more money and surety through someone who lived in that city, but there was no one that we knew. However, God helped us to purchase a house due to sudden political changes in the country, which made the exchange rate of dollars leap three times while searching for a house in three months. For financial self-reliance, we had asked for God’s help and guidance for 10 months holding on to Matthew 10:33 while we were serving the campus ministry by faith. We found a clothing store and bought it for a good price. It was a good experience of how God helped us in detail in order to prepare the pioneering work for the State University of Campinas.

After us, Andrew’s family from São Paulo joined the Campinas ministry. Andrew had to quit his teaching job at the Korean residence school in São Paulo city because of a change in employment requisites. But God opened a way for to work through the Internet in Campinas and was employed by Samsung. We served the ministry diligently having prayer meetings, campus worship services, and Bible studies as we had done before. However, even though time went by, the ministry did not seem to grow at all. With despair and frustration, I longed to retire from the ministry and the heavy burdens of the mission. I spent time researching financial technology in order to become financially free. I began to lose my heart for caring for the flock of God, and several sincere one to one Bible students stopped studying the Bible study with me. Through a miscarriage, I deeply repented of my pride and materialism realizing that life was in God’s hands.

At the Mexico International Conference, I saw several Mexican and Venezuelan leaders who delivered their messages excellently, and I repented of my lack of faith to raise spiritual leaders in Campinas. So I made a resolution to depend on God. After this decision of faith, I wrote sincere testimonies to receive the word of God first, and then I taught the Bible to students. Brother P., who was majoring in computer science, was faithfully studying the Bible. He accepted Jesus as the living water based on John 4 and shared God’s words with his friends. Later on, he also brought his girlfriend to our church and she grew spiritually. However, after marriage, they left the ministry last year without any notice, and other growing students left too. I bottomed out, losing every desire to carry on the discipleship ministry in Brazil. Through many servants’ prayers and advice, and attending conferences, I repented of my selfish ambition to establish the ministry for my name’s sake. In order to serve God purely, I struggled to focus on God’s words and Jesus. Even though the situation was the same as before, my heart was changed and filled with joy and thanksgiving toward God, and I began to love others as they were.

Last December, P. and F. came back to our ministry and have been faithfully co-working with us by God’s grace. After that, R. and B. restored their faith and D. began to attend our worship service again. By God’s grace, my two daughters were accepted to a prestigious medical school in South America and are co-working with us. I thank God, who forgave my sins of pride and selfishness and is enabling me to serve the holy mission to raise Brazil as a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.

One word: bear fruit of repentance.