PASTOR OCK SOO PARK

  • 10. Missionary Marlon Baker / Missionary Kays Glass / The Missionaries Who…

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    Missionary Marlon Baker

     

    There was a missionary named Marlon Baker, who was one of the missionaries that instructed us. He had served as an American soldier, but one morning as the nation went into a state of alert, he was sent to Korea to fight. He was dispatched to fight in Yang-gu, where the war was at its heaviest and Korean and American soldiers alike were dying in combat. While battling in the war, rather than to worry about how he was to live, he wondered what type of country Korea was. As a born-again person, God led him each moment during the war.

     

    He had said that one day he had a strong desire, "Lord rather than to carry a gun and fight this worldly battle for Korea, I would really like to preach the gospel to these Koreans." His desire was to preach to the poor Koreans who were fighting this war while on the other hand there were the Americans who lived such luxurious lives. One day, he prayed to God saying, "God, I want to preach to the Korean people. Please enable me to do so." While praying he gained the faith that God would allow him to preach the gospel to the Korean people.

     

    A couple of days later, he stepped on a mine in the battlefield. As it exploded, his body flew, and then dropped to the ground all bloody. Yet, he said that he had felt so peaceful. As he laid there all bloody, he began to sing a hymn, "Peace, Peace, is coming down from heaven above." A few moments later a hospital orderly found him and transported him to the hospital where his injuries were cared for. However, his right calf was nearly all gone, except for some bone which remained, and in his body was embedded with many pieces of metal and various other materials contained in the mine. His injury and wounds were so severe and deep that he was transported to a hospital in Okinawa, Japan.

     

    I can't explain how touched I was while listening to missionary Baker's testimony. While he was lying in the Okinawa hospital many born-again brothers in America had sent him letters saying, "Marlon Baker, we are praying for you." But one day, the doctor came and told him distressing news, "Mr. Baker, we are going to have to amputate your leg. It is necessary that we do so." When Missionary Baker heard this news, he was disappointed. Yet, in a part of his heart, he felt that God would send him back to Korea, not as a soldier of war, but a soldier who fights for the gospel.

     

    He said he thought, "If God is going to send me to Korea as a missionary, then would He really cut my leg...." Strangely enough, the amputation of his leg was delayed to a later date. The doctors wanted to go through with the surgery, but there were too many wounded soldiers who needed immediate care, that they couldn't. After some time, the doctor came to Missionary Baker and said, "Mr. Baker, you are very lucky. We will not amputate your legs, but you won't be able to use them for the rest of your life. You have to use a wheelchair."

     

    When Missionary Baker heard this, he realized that God was working strongly for him. A while later the doctor returned and said, "Mr. Baker, there's a possibility that you'll be able to walk using springs and a clutch." After that day, Missionary Baker was lying in bed one day when suddenly, without even realizing himself, he climbed out of bed, his heart depending on God, and holding on to the bed he quietly walked around a bit. He then emerged out into the hallway. Someone immediately came from the other end of the hall and exclaimed, "Mr. Baker, you can't do this." He held on to the nurse who said this to him, and began to cry while giving his testimony. "God has allowed me to walk," he told her.

     

    Even though Missionary Baker did not have any muscles in his right hind leg, we are unable to understand how, but he walked well, and at times even ran with us. He then returned to America and attended missionary school to become a missionary in Korea. When it came time for him to leave for Korea, many friends and family disagreed.

     

    "It's good to preach the gospel, but why go all the way to Korea? There are many other countries other than Korea...Wasn't it Korea where you were nearly killed. Aren't you fed up with Korea? You nearly died there and barely recovered. Why would you want to return?" Everyone was against him going to Korea. Missionary Baker shed tears while giving his testimony to those who were opposed to him going, " God had done this, so I can go to Korea."

     

    He came to Korea and visited the army bases as well as the prisons to preach the gospel. He had also visited our missionary school and lectured. His lectures weren't just any ordinary lecture, but within it we could see his love for Korea and such little people as us. He wasn't able to do this out of his heart, but out of the heart he had gained from God.

     

    Missionary Baker had been especially kind to me, it wasn't just knowledge which I learned from the missionaries, but they taught me the God who was in their hearts. Just as God worked in them, as I spent day after day in missionary school, I was able to experience His work in such a wanting person as I.

     

    At first I didn't know a thing. I went to missionary school to escape my situation. But while being trained in missionary school, I was able to realize God working in me. When I read the Bible, I was able to see words I hadn't seen before. Although I was the weakest among the missionary students, when I preached the Word I was able to feel God working in me. I can't easily understand why, but as I prayed, I felt increasingly that God was answering my prayers little by little while I trained in missionary school. He continuously worked in my heart, in ways I could never imagine. The works He showed me caused the zeal to rise in my heart.

     

    Among the missionaries who had taught us, there wasn't a single person who lacked such precious faith. One knew that they weren't doing this just because it was their job. Although Korean people were very poor back then, Americans were wealthy and their lives were grand. There were missionaries who rode luxurious cars back then, others carried a rifle and often went hunting. I saw many missionaries who were like this, but the missionaries who taught us, as born-again missionaries, they hadn't the leisure because they were so busy pouring their zeal for the Lord into our hearts.

     

     

    Missionary Kays Glass

     

    When I attended Jr. High, there was a missionary who came to our school and taught us English as well as helped us out at our church. Kays Glass was his name, and Gee-soo Gil was his Korean name. He was the son of an elder of the Netherlands reformation church. One day he met the president of a Christian school through a lady who attended his church. As he sat and counselled with the president, he received salvation and became born again. After being born again he wanted to preach the Word and so received training in his spiritual life from the WEC mission. He prayed diligently to be able to go to Nepal. Kays Glass was the friend of Broth Andrew who was of the same WEC mission and who authored the book, A Christian Missionary Behind The Iron Curtain.

     

    After his training, Kays Glass was in the process of applying for a visa to Nepal. At that time the head of WEC mission, Norman Grab, was in Tokyo, Japan on some business and was at the Haneda Airport waiting for a flight returning to England when he met Professor Jay Charlbis. Having heard much about and known Norman Grab, as soon as Jay Charlbis saw him he started a discussion. "Where are you headed?" "I'm headed back to England after overseeing some business here in Japan." "You came all the way here, why not take a visit to Korea?"

     

    Professor Charlbis sincerely requested that he went to Korea, so Norman Grab had unexpectedly changed his plans and visited Korea. They went to Ju-am Mountain in Daegu were a multitude of people were gathered. The speaker for the day was professor Jay Charlbis, but president Norman Grab was so well known that professor Charlbis handed the stage over to him. He was giving him the chance to preach the Word in Korea. And so Professor Norman Grab was preaching the word when he one day asked the audience, "Among you, please raise your hands if any person who has truly received salvation. And even if you die right now you believe you can go to heaven."

     

    There were over a thousand people sitting there gathered together, but only about two or three raised their hands but later put them down. Professor Grab was astounded. The people there were so diligent in prayer, they sang praises with such a sincere and heart filled heart, after the Bible seminar they would go up to the mountain and pray, shouting, "Lord, Lord!" till the mountain tops rung with their cries. He just couldn't understand. When Norman Grab had first met these people, looking at their diligence he thought, "These people have such diligent faith so I assume they're all born again," and just preached words directed to born-again Christians.

     

    But among them there was only a small number who were saved. Seeing this, professor Norman Grab was astonished. After the conference as he was heading back to England by plane when he cried praying to the Lord in earnest, "God, have mercy upon Korea. Allow God's servant to come to Korea and preach God's true gospel so that the people in Korea may be saved from sin and become born again."

     

    Even after returning to England, he didn't fail to pray for Korea. One day he was preaching at this one church in England, but before he preached the Word to the missionary students who were with him, he told them to give a testimony. The missionary student who gave his testimony that evening was Kays Glass. "I was born to an elder of the Netherlands reformation church, and had lived my life without having been born again, but one day I had met a born-again Christian school president and was having spiritual counselling when I received salvation, and I had also received a visa to go mission in Nepal," he gave his testimony.

     

    After Kays Glass gave his testimony and sat down, professor Norman Grab rose to the podium to give the sermon. He announced before the people before him saying, "The student who had just given his testimony will not be going to Nepal, but Korea." He said this because God's spirit told him that,"This is the man who is to go to Korea." The people were so surprised, and even Kays Glass thought, "Hey, how can he say something like that." But a while later, he was informed that he wouldn't be allowed a visa, for the Nepal government had embraced communism and was rejecting missionaries. Eventually Case Glass went to Korea as a missionary.

     

    As missionary Kays Glass preached the gospel in Korea, he found that although many people so diligently and wholeheartedly attended church and worshipped the Lord, they were just as apostle Paul before he received salvation, and how he worked with diligence without having been saved. Knowing this he felt very distressed. Although there were many missionaries working in Korea, the born-again missionaries weren't trying to make the people their church members, but they wanted that people can become born again. As these distressed missionaries gathered one by one, they one day had a week long prayer and fasting at Derek Earl's house, which served as the commencement of the missionary school.

     

      

    The Missionaries Who Taught Us God

     

    There was no way a person like me could have entered missionary school. But the person they were looking for was not one who was fluent in English, who had all the characteristics the world admired; they were looking for a person who was born again. The Scribes and High priest looked for people who were clever. On the other hand, Jesus sought after the unfortunate. Because they too looked for the underprivileged, I was able to train in the missionary school.

     

    Each missionary was born again by the Holy Spirit. The missionaries did not go according to their plans nor their own will, but by receiving the Holy Spirit's guidance they were able to walk with God as well as to act towards us with the heart of God. Although we were such meagre Koreans, they had loved us, and when we hungered they were more wounded, and when we had gone through hardships they shed tears with us. As we saw this, through their endless love, but their strict and strong training, we were able to experience Christ and be led by the Spirit.

     

    Especially, Missionary Dick York had strongly the importance of having quiet time. No matter how difficult or busy we were, he trained us to get up early in the morning to pray with all our heart before God, and to have time to read the Bible with a heart to listen to God's voice. By experiencing such training, to this day I wake up each morning to read the Bible and pray. When I read the Bible, it wasn't just God's book. But through it, just as the living God led the characters in the Bible, I was able to realize that He led also me. The experiences of God working in my life and the breadth of his work in my heart grew greater and greater. The life after the longing, desires and joys of the flesh I had followed after before, changed bit by bit as I was led by God.

     

     

    When I Preach, God Is With Me!

     

    Back then every Saturday evening we rented a hall in the basement of the Daegu TV station, located by the Daegu train station, inviting those who passed by and preached the gospel to them. I wanted to accompany the others when they witnessed while playing the accordion, however, one day one of the missionaries came to me and said, "This Saturday you'll be preaching the sermon." I was so taken aback. I didn't know what to preach.

     

    I decided to preach John chapter five and began to preach about the man with infirmity for 38 years. It was so scary and burdensome to stand at the podium and preach the Word. I don't know what I had preached that night, but I felt my heart filled with the spirit, and that the audience was listening attentively to my words. When I stood there before everyone, God enabled me to think of Words I hadn't thought of and preached them through me. That one-hour was so short but heart filled for me. As soon as I finished giving the sermon, from that point I realized that, "God is with me whenever I preach the Word. He is guiding me." It isn't knowledge that I had learned in missionary school. I was able to learn God. As I saw God work in each of the missionaries and realized the truth of Him working also in me, I had hope. And when I though of such God working in me, I was so very thankful.

     

    When I first entered missionary school, I was just a teenager raised in the country. There was nothing I knew, and nothing admirable in me. But upon graduating missionary school, although I still was young and lacked, my heart was in Jesus, and I had become a person who was of Jesus and led by Him. 

     

     

     

     

     

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