Nathan Kwak

by Steven Hong

Last summer, the encouragement level at Lighthouse took a dip when Nathaniel Kwak left San Diego indefinitely. Upon completing his undergraduate schooling at UC San Diego, Nathan moved up I-5 to La Palma, California to be with his family. Nathan always stood out as an encouraging brother, greeting anyone and everyone with a warm smile and a friendly word. The Beacon had a chance to catch up with Nathan, who is now a member at Good News Chapel in West Covina.

Where are you now and what are you up to these days?

I currently live in La Palma, CA. I’m working at a corporate Bank of America office, pretty much a cubicle 9am-5pm job. During nights and weekends I’ve been involved with my church, meeting up with people to get to know them better. I’m also involved with some new programs that we are starting up in the new season coming up at our church.

How was the transition in regards to moving churches? Were there any particular lessons you learned at LBC that helped the transition?

Since I was already a member of GNC prior to LBC, I had ties when I went back. However, it still was (and continues to be) a work in progress as the time away in college was long enough to lose some intimacy in relationships. I felt very much at home at LBC and losing much of the weekly (and sometimes daily) relationships made it tough in terms of accountability and the expectations I had for church. LBC has such gifted preachers and teachers up on the pulpit. But two main things that I took away from LBC were the importance of committing to a church and the importance of discipline in the individual. Being a very shy guy initially, having these two things drilled into me really aided in getting acclimated to church quicker and with much joy knowing that I am a part of the body of Christ.

What advice would you give to those who make a similar move after college ends?

Even though church is a main topic at LBC, something that I had to do upon returning home was to dive straight back into Scripture and understand the role and importance of the local church. As I studied, I, as an individual, really took a back seat as I saw how God uses His church to glorify Himself. This provided much comfort as well as rebuke time and time again, especially when selfish thoughts/motives tried to control my thinking. So understand the church and apply that knowledge. No one person is safe from falling away, especially when accountability is lacking.

How have you been growing and challenged since you’ve left LBC?

I don’t know how much space I have, so I’ll keep this short. As well as learning much about the church, God’s been continually growing in me a deeper and more intimate faith. Sometimes I used to wonder, am I serving God because it’s the thing everyone is doing? Or am I truly Christian, having died to myself and following Christ in his righteousness? A lot of strengths that I thought I had were immediately dismantled having returned home, especially having to once again live with family. They bring out the best and worst in me. And in hard financial times, I had to once again re-evaluate, is God the one and only satisfaction in my life? When Paul says to live is Christ and to die is gain, do I believe it? Do I count all as loss? No, no, and NO! I didn’t. And I’m still learning to let go of all the things that I’m holding onto. As I’ve prayed hard and received counsel of going into seminary, a deep fear of God is becoming entrenched. In the midst of growing deeper in my relationship with Him, I don’t think I’ve ever had a deeper fear of God.

Read any good books lately?

Desiring God by Piper, Reflections by C.S. Lewis are two I’ve recently finished. Man, its been so much harder to with work! Props to all you workers out there… I respect and admire all of you so much more having become a part of it.

One that I pick up a lot is the Valley of Vision, the Puritan prayers. I love and deeply recommend this one to everyone!

What are your plans moving forward and how can we keep you in our prayers?

I’m going into Talbot Seminary in the fall, God willing. Please pray for guidance from Scripture and to continue to grow in fear of God. My character is a concern of mine always, as I see the high calling of the gospel something that is frightening. Man, I’m not sure I knew the depths of what I was getting into when I became Christian. But it becomes more and more amazing as I understand the heart of God better each day. Please pray as the economy has caught our family in a deep crunch as well, especially as my parents have been delayed now in going to Vladivostok, Russia as long-term missionaries. I’ll be praying for you all as well.

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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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