A South Korean pastor was murdered by the Taliban in Afghanistan yesterday, and twenty-two members of Saemmul Church are still being held hostage there.  In the face of such evil, how do we trust, believe, pray?  Eugene Cho has put together a picture of what Pastor Bae Hyung Kyu’s life was all about — by all accounts, a life marked by sincerity, generosity and love.  Eugene has posted a photo of Pastor Bae’s father, an ordained elder, praying for his son which is utterly crushing in light of what has happened to his son.

We’re right in the middle of our VBS.  It has been a wonderful time of seeing God work in the hearts of so many people in our church community.  I do believe everything we’ve been sharing — that God is strong and that He is with us — but these words feel so frail and so fleeting when the darkness pushes its way into our lives so forcefully.

I understand when people try to emphasize God’s sovereignty in these situations — that the “blood of the martyrs is the seed of the church.”   Perhaps part of “counting the cost” in going out into dangerous places is a willingness to give up one’s life.  But when I think of the family Pastor Bae left behind, my heart breaks. All we can do is mourn together, pray and weep and stumble through the darkness together, and carry those who are unable to move forward.

Lord, have mercy; Christ, have mercy.