I think I wrote a blog post (or something) once about "where in the world are the Housers?" The answer to which would be, "South Korea." But it seems often people aren't quite sure WHAT in the world we are doing in Korea. It is a rather unique situation. I did a (very brief) blog search and didn't see anywhere that I specifically addressed this question so I'll answer it now, in case you are wondering.
Three years ago we felt the Lord very specifically call us to a Church in South Korea. Steve had been looking for a job change and was wanting to go into full time ministry. He felt very specific about the type of Church he wanted to work and serve with and as he searched for "the right one" he came across a job posting for Songtan Central Baptist Church. He read over it, felt excited about it, liked everything the Church believed, liked the looks of the Church and the job position....Until he reached the end of the job posting and saw: "Songtan, South KOREA."
Asia was most definitely not in our plans or thoughts. In fact, only about 8 months prior I had told him we weren't moving out of the 50 mile radius we were currently living....I wanted to stay in Minnesota, close to family and friends. I grew up moving around and I wanted to stay put for a while. Plus, I really liked my job and didn't want to give it up.
He came home and mostly joking asked if I would move to Korea with him.
I stunned him with "sure, check it out."
What he didn't know, was a friend of mine had challenged me a few months prior that maybe I wasn't opening my hand to what the Lord might have for us....that I shouldn't be so closed to the idea of moving....that maybe there was a job somewhere for Steve that wasn't Minnesota. I had decided that was pretty sound advice and been challenged. However, when I responded "sure" I really didn't think anything would come of it.....I was mostly joking back.
Fast forward a few months and we were packing our things and moving our lives to Asia.
So what do we do here?
We have a very unique situation. We work for a large Korean Church. They have a ministry outreach to English speakers in the area (mostly American military, school teachers, contractors and Koreans seeking to worship in English). They hired a head pastor to lead the congregation (of about 150-200 members) and then they hired Steve. He was hired as the youth director but has taken on quite a few roles in addition to that (sometimes I tease him that youth ministry is more like 40% of his job). Our ministry aim is primarily Americans and English speakers. We work in the community and in our Church doing a wide variety of things.
We have grown to love Songtan Central Baptist Church and the ministry and community here in Korea. There is no doubt in our minds that the Lord's plan in bringing us out here was perfect. He knew what He was doing, as hard as it felt (and sometimes still feels). As we have found true, most worthwhile things in life are not easy....and most easy things in life aren't very worthwhile.
How long are we planning to be here?
Funny you ask.
We were initially planning to be moving back to the States in about 2 months!
But the Lord has a way of changing hearts and plans....
We have no idea how long we are here. For the foreseeable future is the best way to answer that question. Stay tuned....