My Son or A Chipmunk
In one of my past blogs I wrote about how my son’s pockets are like the kingdom of heaven. Because the kingdom of heaven is full of mysteries and treasures. Just like my son’s pockets are full of mystery, I will never know what to expect to find inside of them, but whatever is in his pockets is what he treasures the most. Well Ben has moved beyond filling his pockets and now he has a very special box that he has filled with various “treasure.”
I actually did not know he had this box, but apparently, he has filled it to its maximum capacity. And that box is filled with a lot of Norah’s, Eunkyung’s, and my self’s missing belongs. I found my GoPro charging cable, looks like some of my wife’s makeup, Norah’s missing Barbie shoes, various piece of paper, two rice Krispy treats, two chocolate covered pretzels, and one meatball. Yup, that’s right a meatball… I believe that has got to be like a week old. I have zero clue what he plans on doing with that meatball. Not too sure what is up with him scavenging for these types of items.
I am not too sure if I am raising a son or a chipmunk. It’s almost like he is hiding and storing important things for winter or something. I have zero clue where he learned this behavior. Maybe he has been secretly observing chipmunks and thought that was what everyone is supposed to do? Also he has a habit of stuffing as much food in his mouth then chewing and swallowing. I have no idea.
Maybe he is preparing for the coming apocalypse? Maybe he feels that 2021 is going to be like 2020 and he witnessed wierdos hording an unnecessary amount of toilet paper every time we watch the news to see what is happening “out there?” May be all this isolation is getting to him?
But seriously, he is probably doing it for none of those reasons stated above. I think he find these certain items to be valuable and precious, and instead of having it thrown away or away form his presence, he’d rather save them and cherish them in his secret box forever. That is super cute to think that one meatball is so precious enough to save forever.
Shouldn’t we think like that about the things that we should find precious in our own lives? Keeping our relationship with God so close and protecting our faith? Sure! Of course! Maybe we can’t put those things in a box, but at least we can remember how important those things are to us. And also we can think about ore things that are important to us, like building relationships with our family and friends, our morals and ethics, or certain lessons in life that we have learned.
Before we head into the new year, let us reflect on this year. I know 2020 was not great, but there are still things that we have learned, things that we accomplished, and things that we found that were precious to us in this year. Reflect on that moment and pray that 2021 will bring new opportunities for us to cherish.
A Christmas Message
Are you ready for Christmas? I hope that you all can find the hope, peace, joy, and love that comes from God during this time of the year. May God bless you and your family at this time. I know that things around us make it hard to truly enjoy the holidays. There are a lot of things to be fearful of because of the COVID-19 pandemic. But at least you have each other and you do have people around you that care about you. You might not be able to see them or visit them at this time, but they are there and I know that they are thinking about you a lot.
And never forget that God is there with you as well. You are never alone or forgotten. Sometimes it is hard to see God during this time, but God is there. Trust me God does not easily abandon His people! God has invested way too much on us to just leave us! Afterall, He sent his Son, Jesus to be with us, to teach us how to live and treat other people, and ultimately die on the cross to save us from sin and death! Yes we have a God that loved us so much, He was willing to risk not just His own life, but also His Son’s life! Crazy love isn’t it? That is one heck of an investment.
God can’t leave us so easily, His love is too strong for us. No matter how we feel, no matter what guilt we may feel, it is God who chooses to be with us during the good time and the bad times. God does not just abandon us. Even though COVID-19 is wrecking havoc in our neighborhoods, God is working to get things better. God has provided us with some great nurses, doctors, pharmacists to get this this in control so that we can get back to a better life. But they need our help. So let’s do our part to help them by doing the responsible things, and to stay aware. I know it seems like a daunting task to give each and everyone that responsibility to stop the spread, but we can due it. Against all odds, we can help! And God knows what it means to be in the middle of something that seems so impossible. But God makes the impossible, possible, against all odds, God is finding way to bring healing.
Christmas is right around the corner. So let us come together in one heart and embody the Christmas spirit. It is hard to enjoy things because we feel that there is so much against us. Travel restrictions, loneliness, depression, sickness, and death. But against all odds we must hold tight on our faith. Afterall, against all odds, Jesus was born. It took a lot of gamble for Jesus’ birth and survival. It took a willing unmarried, virgin teenager to accept God’s request to burden the pregnancy of Jesus Christ. It took wisemen coming from a far away land to notice an anomaly in the sky that would eventually lead them to Jesus Christ. A star shining so bright, even seen in the day. These wisemen traveled years to reach their destination, against all odds, like Mary they too made it.
So remember, God is with you, against all odds, God loves you so much that He would sacrifice His own life and His Son’s life to be with you in this very moment. COVID-19 cannot separate you from His love. He wants you to be uplifted, prayerful, thankful, and in peace, even if it feels those things are so distant from your heart. But against all odds, God will make things work out. May The love of God be upon you. Merry Christmas everyone!
We Need Help
So, I really don’t want to talk more about COVID-19, but what else is there to talk about? But we have some big news right? Vaccines are here! And we have more coming from another company! That does make me feel good, but I know that it will take a while to vaccinate all the people. So… please… everyone… take… the… vaccine!!!
Listen, take the vaccine, for the love of God. We ain’t stopping this sickness through our behavior. As much as there are a lot of people out there doing the responsible thing, like social distancing, changing their lifestyle, and wearing masks, and just being aware of your surroundings; there are still some messed up people out there that aren’t doing anything at all to end this pandemic. It’s the people that think this is a joke, and it’s getting responsible people sick, it is getting the vulnerable, the people we need to protect, sick. So…. Since we suck at changing our lives collectively… take the dang vaccine. Listen up, take the vaccine when it is available, it will help end this crappy 2020 year.
End this pandemic so my kids can go back to school! It’s pretty messed up to think my daughter hasn’t seen her kindergarten class at all, and might be a possibility that she will never even have a kindergarten if this thing lasts until summer! That’s right.. she’s just going to go first grade… like, didn’t ever smile at her teacher, didn’t build relationship with any peers. That is nuts to think about…. So please everyone, take the effing vaccine!
Take the vaccine so I can visit my parents again! I miss them, and they are getting old and my mom and dad needs help around the house. I want to travel like more than 2 miles from the house. I travel to go to the post office… yup.. that’s it.
Take the vaccine, so I can go shopping again, and actually take Norah and Ben to Walmart so they can pick a toy to buy (hopefully not too expensive). So I can buy fresh veggies. All my shopping, even for groceries have been through Amazon… I can’t remember what an apple looks like man!
Take the vaccine, so I can go fishing more often. See, you think I’d be fishing more, but nope! Can’t do that because I have kids. My kids are home all the time thanks to COVID-19. So which means my wife and I are also at home. Most days are fun, but then there are those days that gets stressful.
Also, remember even if you get the vaccine, you still need to social distance and wear your mask. You are not safe until everyone gets the vaccine. So… yeah… everyone… or at least like 80% of you get the dang vaccine!
Let’s end this pandemic. Get the vaccine. Wear your mask, social distance when you are outside doing your shopping or going to church, or doing whatever… you know.. just be socially aware of your space. Wash your hands and be aware at how many times you touch your face. Hand sanitizer all the time. Come on, everyone, lets do it, let’s end this. We can all be a hero and save a life by doing these things.
Sorry… this blog was written on one of those days that I am stressed out looking at the damn obituary in the Altoona Mirror. That is a lot of people on there if you haven’t noticed in the last month. That’s messed up… and heartbreaking…
Norah accidentally submitted in her kindergarten work a note to her music teacher that read, “F U.” I spent an hour trying to figure out how to change it before her music teacher would notice. Yep… in bright pink colored marker on her Seesaw App note she wrote “F U.” She wanted to say “FUN.” But she forgot one letter and accidentally pressed the green check mark button which is submit!
Dude! Virtual Learning is hard man! So many thing that can apparently go wrong.
So when I found out what happened, first of all I didn’t know what Norah did and she of course didn’t know what F U stands for. But when I went to check her work… that is when I saw what happened! I lost my mind and freaked out! Norah felt terrible because she didn’t know what she did wrong, and I had no idea how to explain to her that “F U” is ummm… not good and not a polite thing to say or write. She wondered why because they are just letters, so what? I can’t tell her what that means, but I just kept saying you can never combine the letters F and U by itself, it is not a good meaning. She just looked puzzled as she watched me sweat and struggle!
I finally, got the darn thing fixed, but my worry is that enough time has passed for possibly the music teacher to notice… which makes me feel terrible. I really hope and pray that the music teacher or her homeroom teacher has not checked it before the change was made… but if either Norah’s teacher, or the music teacher or anyone in Baker Elementary school actually see this blog and saw the letters “F U.” I am so sorry, it was a mistake, my little daughter would never write such a thing, she still has no idea what that means, it was a total accident.
I think I need to stay next to her when she is doing all her virtual learning work. She is still trying to get used to using a tablet and do all her work on the tablet. I am still learning as well. I usually just let her work on her own without my supervision because sometimes she gets too comfortable with either mom or dad next to her and depend on us to help her or give her answers. Having her do the work on her own I find forces her to think on her own. After she is done, I usually go back and check her work and tell her to make whatever correction was necessary.
She wanted to write a note to her music teacher because she really liked the video that was posted in her Seesaw account and wanted to tell her teacher it was “FUN” not “F U.” She enjoys school even if it is virtual, but there is a lot of extra work that is needed and a lot of sacrifice for the parents to make sure their child is learning well.
Now I feel bad flipping out in front of Norah, so it looks like ice cream time to try to make up for freaking her out and making her feel confused. I hope I didn’t destroy her confidence or prevent her from enjoying school. Oh man… let’s see what today brings… another day of isolation, another day of virtual classrooms.
How Long Do We Have to Wait...
Isolation, Trapped in Home, Two Anxious Kids, Two Anxious Parents, Amazon, Pre-Packaged Food, 20lbs. This is pretty much the reality we have been since March. Just feeling stuck!
Since March, since the beginning of the pandemic we have found ourselves in isolation, trapped in our home, two kids unable to do anything with their friends, amazon packages have been coming nonstop to our doorstep, and I have gained nearly 20lbs!
It’s nearly impossible to get out and exercise with the pandemic raging around us. For real! We haven’t seen our friends or family since March! We get nearly everything through Amazon and I am getting exhausted watching YouTube and Netflix. I get out to fish a little, but can’t do it for a long time since the kids are at home (they ain’t going to school) and doing virtual learning. I can’t remember what a fresh fruit or vegetable looks like! But, gotta keep at it, gotta wait until this thing is done and over.
Yeah, we have gone through a lot of changes in lifestyle because of COVID-19, but I feel that it is the best. The best option for me is to eliminate all possible chances of getting this thing and passing it along to someone else. Sacrifices were made, including my physical health, but at least mentally and spiritually I still feel good. Hanging out with the kids is a blessing because I can see them grow, learn, and bond with each other through this pandemic; I am grateful. Norah asks me when she can hang out with her buddy Noel, and the only answer I can give her is… soon… Norah asks me when can we go on a family vacation and I keep telling her soon… Norah keeps asking when can we go together to the store and buy toys… and I always say, soon. So How long will we have to wait to get back to normal life? Soon.
Christmas is coming and we are in the beginning of the Advent season. I recommend everyone to read Isaiah 2:2-4, the day in which the Lord will come and how glorious it will be. I imagine these verses are not just about going to go to the place to worship God, but that people will be able to find freedom soon. Freedom to go to worship freely, freedom to live their life holistically and completely, freedom to travel, freedom from worry. That day will come…. Soon. When? Soon. Even though the church has been open to do in house worship, I feel that we are constantly on high alert. We have masks, we have hand sanitizer, zero singing, zero responsive reading, in the house of worship for 30 minutes, consolidated worship, and nitpicking at what we can do to assure that COVID-19 will not affect our community.
I find myself constantly talking with people who are health experts working with our state, our nation to help us keep going to do worship. I know it’s not perfect, but it is safe and we are able to do worship in God’s house. I am thankful for all the efforts of the elders, deacons, church staff, Sunday School teachers, kids, youth, and college kids doing their part to make worship possible. They too made the sacrifice to change their life to assure a safe worshipping environment. I am thankful for the congregation doing their part in making immense changes to their life to make this all possible. We have been fortunate to not have any cases of COVID-19, and it will stay that way, because each and every one of us is doing our part. We are doing our part to be safe and healthy. The day will come that we will be free. The day will come that we can do as we please, the day will come that we can do fellowship again, but when that will happen? Soon.
Thank you all for being patient with the church. Thank you all for being understanding in the efforts that we are doing here at the church. Your efforts will be rewarded when the day comes that we “shall be raised above the hills.” May that day come soon.
Hey this is Rev. Brian Choi's random thought throughout my week. Most of this stuff, will probably be about family, church, fishing, music, movies, food, whatever I think of, hopefully it will have some sort of theological reflection (maybe).