Andy Shin

by Andy Shin

Many say that your college years are some of the best years of your life. Of course, we’re still very young and do not have much to compare, so I would agree. My college years were fun and memorable. But more importantly, these have been by far the most significant times of my life. This is when and where God saved me. To be more specific, sophomore year was the time and LBC was the place. Nathaniel Kwak, who I had already known from back home, invited me out to LBC when we were freshmen. I still remember bits and pieces of that day. It’s probably what all collegians will tell you when they first visit: the service was at the break of dawn, the message was painfully long, the pastor was intense, and an ancient hymn was sung. I quickly fled and didn’t return until sophomore year. During that summer, I noticed how much Nathan had grown over the past year. On the other hand, I looked at my life and saw how things were the same or worse. Something was wrong. But to be honest, I think I was even more envious of the many Christian friends Nathan had made and showed off on his Xanga page during that time. Regardless, God in his sovereign plan brought me back to LBC and kept me here ever since. Though I grew up in the Christian church, it was in college and at LBC where I truly repented of my sins and submitted my life to Christ. That was when I was challenged to defend my faith, break the sinful patterns of my life, pursue holiness, love people, and share the good news.

The popular question for graduating seniors is, “What are you doing after college?” A couple years ago, I would have eagerly chosen to go back home in Orange County. The logical choice would be to go back and live with my parents, find a job, spend little, and save a lot. However, things have changed. More importantly, the things I value most are not the same.

There are two aspects of this church that I really appreciate and would look for in any church I go to. First, it is the high view of God’s Word. The Bible’s inerrancy, consistency, and relevance in all cultures and times are all taught and held onto. This high view not only affects the teaching but how the church is led. I think this past year really revealed that to me. When it came time to make decisions, no matter how drained and discouraged they may have been, the elders were confident in their actions. Through much prayer, study of the scriptures, and Biblical counsel from other pastors, they were able to make their decisions with courage. This confidence came from knowing that their decisions were consistent with the Bible so that they might be God-glorifying. This confidence did not come from themselves but from God who graciously provided the wisdom through the word. I would always want to be at a church that demonstrated not only this kind of high view of the Bible but also that kind of love for Christ and the church.

The other aspect that I love about the church is the discipleship environment you get as older Christians reach out and invest in the lives of younger Christians. As a recent convert, it’s a blessing to have older men at the church who show signs of faithfulness in ministry, wisdom, and love for Christ. It’s one thing to read and hear about godly men and it’s another to see them live it out, personally challenge you, and lead by example.

The crazy thing is that I have nothing to say for all the things God has blessed me with through this church but that it was only by His sovereign grace. We don’t deserve it, can’t earn it, and don’t seek it, but God knows that we need it and He is good. Always good.

Favorite place in SD: I’m a homebody so it’d be my apartment.
Song that will define the era in 10 years: The earliest LBC sermon I can recall, and actually remember the content from, was titled “Stained Glass Masquerade.” That was when I was introduced to Casting Crowns and that album. Unfortunately, in terms of secular music, this era hasn’t been able to produce a classic that we could look back and still be respected for loving. Maybe Kelly Clarkson.
Favorite verse: Ephesians 2:4-5. The Gospel message.
Memory that stands out the most: Boys’ Appreciation during our sophomore year. Our class sisters cooked for us, made us shirts, and took us to a Padres game. Couple weeks later, we made them hotdogs and played games.
Advice for collegians: Love God, love others, get committed to a church, be a member, find an older married man, get discipled by him, learn a lot, and do it all soon. Do it now!

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The Beacon is the monthly newsletter for Lighthouse Bible Church in San Diego, California. It covers a variety of subjects including LBC events, church history, current events from a Christan perspective, ministry profiles, and messages from our pastors and elders. To join the Beacon ministry, please contact Stephen Rodgers.

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