The Debriefing and Return to San Diego (AR09)

by Pastor John Kim

This year’s trip was truly a blessing from God. As our family and the rest of the team were able to continue the work that was started in Tucumán back in 2005, the fellowship and the ministry that we were able to participate in was truly wonderful in every way. Partnering with Pastor Jorge, Norma, and their son Josué was a mutual encouragement as we were able to enjoy the building up of our relationship after a particularly challenging time earlier this year as we contemplated having to possibly end our relationship due to some doctrinal confusion. But God was gracious in not only allowing us to clarify all the issues, we were able to move forward and really enjoy a time of both evangelizing the lost as well as equipping the body at IBM. Our debriefing time in Buenos Aires was quite cold and rainy. We spent a couple of days in discussion over what we had learned during the trip as well as to prepare for our return back to San Diego. Our talks were encouraging as we were able to bless each other on Friend Day, where you give a small gift to those that you would call your friends. We were able to share with one another all the various ways in which we saw God at work but in the team and through the team. Some might wonder if these kinds of discussions are necessary, but they are indeed because during the trip itself it is hard to have time to really think through what you are learning as you are busy with ministry.

Debriefing is also important because it helps prepare the team members for re-entry back home. Expectations can be raised dramatically as to how church ministry should be because for several weeks the team has been able to do ministry 24/7 with no distractions from school, work, or even mundane things like cooking and cleaning. It is a unique opportunity, but it can also be somewhat discouraging to come back because it seems like the ministry back home can be so slow and not as exciting. It relates to the heart being prepared more than anything, that there would be a killing of pride and nurturing of humility that all the lessons learned would not simply be used as a means of comparison to others but rather to grow in Christlikeness and to be more willing to serve the body.

We also had a wonderful time with Eduardo and Gloria Buldain, who brought their son Matthias along so that we could hear about their churchplanting ministry as well as their pastoral equipping ministry which they just started recently. The energy and vision for the future was exciting to see and hear and I personally was challenged to expand my vision for the future beyond even just what Lighthouse does but how we might also partner with others who have similar vision.

As we traveled back to San Diego, it was a similar feeling that I would experience coming back from a summer mission trip. There is a certain sadness in leaving the people that we have ministered with but there is also a certain excitement in looking forward to the future. One of the biggest encouragements was to see how our team was able to grow together and encourage each other throughout the pre-trip preparation as well as during the trip itself. My hope is that the team would take this experience and build toward the future by investing the lessons learned abroad into the church here at San Diego. And Godwilling, we will see our commitment to the MVP continue to grow.

Thank you all for your prayers, financial support, and encouragement!

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About

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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