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International

The Later Rain of the Holy Spirit Wets a Barren Land

  • Nation | Bolivia
  • Date | November 01, 2003
ⓒ 2003 WATV
The gospel of South America started from a passionate country, Peru, and is now firmly grounded in the land thanks to Mother's earnest prayers of tears and sacrifice. Obeying the word of God to spread the light of gospel to other neighbor countries, I moved into Bolivia all but a country spiritually desolated. Bolivia is located in the heart of South America. Its size is approximately five times larger than the Korean Peninsula and the population reaches near 7.7 million. The Republic of Bolivia is the formal name.

When I started the gospel work in Peru, one of the pastors was sent from the Whole Assembly and prepared church building and furniture for us so that I could only concentrate on preaching. However, Bolivia was a different case. I had to start with nothing. Exploiting a spiritually barren land, the only thing I could do was to rely on our Father and Mother who are always with children. Truly, a mortal being couldn't do anything alone. At the same time, I was quite curious to know with what plan God would change this wilderness into a fertile land of the gospel.

Bolivia was laid in the course of the gospel's being preached to the ends of the earth. Our steps were light and our hearts leaped for joy to prepare the God's abode.

I'd ever visited Bolivia to get my visa. At that time, the bus we took drove along the mountainside in zigzag that I and my wife suffered from a terrible carsickness. We could winded down the sickness by smearing an alcohol on our faces which the bus guide gave us as we were moaning in pain.

It was an extremely long way and the bus was still running when the sun rose and we woke up. The alcohol we used to calm down the carsickness turned into yellow stains covering up our faces. Seeing each other's face, we laughed out loud like children.

Passing by the world largest lake, Titicaca, which is located on the boarder of Peru and Bolivia, we again suffered from a typical headache of the high altitude area. But, who on the earth can block the will of Almighty God who is always with us and comforts us? Thanks to God's help, we overcame all disturbances.

ⓒ 2003 WATV
Remembering the terrible carsickness and headache we had in the previous journey, we ate pills to prevent carsickness and prepared some medicines for mountain sickness, the headache. This visit is meaningful in God establishing the first Zion in Bolivia. With deacon Jose and his wife deaconess Charo, who God chose to take charge of the Bolivia Church, I rode on a bus and headed for the capital of Bolivia, La Paz, which is located on the high altitude of 3,600m above the sea level.

As we arrived at the boarder, due to the character of the hilly sections-the lack of oxygen, we hardly breathed and felt headache. Fortunately, with help of a guide deaconess Charo and I got preventive shots at a public health center. Deacon Jose was born and grown up in Puno, near the Lake Titicaca and the boarder, that he was fine and didn't feel any nausea and headache.
We encouraged deacon Jose, saying that God certainly chose him before the ages to be minister of the Bolivia Church.

After a 4 hour drive from the border, we arrived in La Paz and temporarily lodged in a small quarterage where young backpack tourists often use. Maybe because of the injection we got at the border, dyspnoea got better and the headache was cured. We unpacked our belongings and spent the first night in Bolivia.

Next day, as soon as we woke up, we hurried to find the abode of God where the spirit of God will stay-Zion where the eternal blessings will be given. At first, we bought a newspaper and read all rental advertisements and visited every house one by one. Deacon Jose and deaconess Charo in one group, and I with Father and Mother went out to find the graceful place where God had already prepared for us.

It wasn't easy to seek the abode of God. Some houses requested guarantors and some houses called exorbitant prices and others were so far from the city that it seemed difficult for family to come and go. Few days passed, but we still had not found a suitable place to start church. The greater and more pressing situations were, the more constant and earnest our prayers were. There were no new advertisements updated but only the previous ads we already saw were posted on the newspapers.
Finally, we threw away the newspapers and searched every corner of the street to find a building God will be pleased with.

As the town is located in a high mountain between deep valleys, we went up and down along the steep mountainside like woodsmen. I could imagine Father walking a rugged road and wiping His sweat as He climbed a steep mountain path to find a refuge for His children on this land.

About a week later, in the afternoon of the day after the Sabbath, I saw a monthly renting advertisement posted on a house. It wasn't too small apparently and seemed fine to start a new church. I pressed the buzzer and went inside. The place just got repaired and was in good shape. The house was the first place to establish Zion in Bolivia.

“For the Lord has chosen Zion, he has desired it for his dwelling: This is my resting place for ever and ever..." (Psalms 132:13).

ⓒ 2003 WATV
God already prepared the abode He would rest even before the creation of the earth. Like children who won a treasure hunting game, all of us were so delighted. We imagined that God's children scattered in Bolivia would come to God joyfully and receive the blessing of eternal life. We smiled with satisfaction.

We hardly controlled our excitement. We packed our stuffs and headed for the newly contracted place. On the next day, snow started to fall. As for deaconess Charo, it was her first time to see snow and I hadn't seen snow for several years after leaving Korea. We both jumped and chanted like little kids right beside the windows of Zion.

However, the snow that made us happy turned into rain and even accompanied hails. Houses collapsed and cars crashed into others. The whole city was in confuse due to the first heavy snowfall in La Paz that even the electricity went off. Moreover, the hails invaded the shops under the valley and the underground shopping center in the central area was filled up with snows and hails that people inside were stocked. Military, police and citizen joint forces rescued the victims by all measures.

On the next day, we heard that the lodge we had stayed at got greatly damaged by the heavy hail. We thanked Almighty God the Father and Mother for saving us from the hail disaster and simultaneously helping us find the church building. We again thanked God who always concerns about children's safety.

The church building was prepared and we bought some stuffs for the church one by one─this was how the gospel in Bolivia started. Though the beginning seemed weak, it would become powerful enough to give a big light over the whole Bolivia.

God has sent another missionary to the Bolivia Church and I'm in other place to deliver the gospel. The new-starting Bolivia Church reminds me of the first take off of the Peru Church and I can't help praying for the Bolivia Church. I ask brothers and sisters to pray for Zion in Bolivia. When our prayers reach our heavenly Father and Mother, They will outstretch the almighty hands to help us.

I thank Father and Mother for always giving us a lot of blessing and boundless love. Amen.
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