2016 Los Angeles – Christine Chun

Open Vessels

But we have this treasure in jars of clay, to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us. – 2 Corinthians 4:7

It’s been quite long since I last went on a missions trip, or let alone serve at a Christian conference with a ministry team. Leading up to the trip, I felt slightly inadequate and uncertain of how God was going to work through me, especially with a team of 11, most of whom I had never met before.

But regardless of my feelings of hesitation, I clung to Scripture that promises the following: “In the last days, God says, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your young men will see visions, your old men will dream dreams.” (Acts 2:17). As I meditated on this verse, I felt at peace knowing that revival is not initiated by man, but God himself. The Lord desired to encounter His people at HolyWave through this conference more than I could ever desire.

Before I left for my trip, one of my supporters gave me a word: open vessel. She also prayed over me that I would minister out of rest and confidence in knowing who I am before the Father, and that there would be no striving. I took this prayer as my personal theme of the entire trip. If I simply remained in the vine, I would bear much fruit. The river of life was already flowing out of me, and I didn’t need to try so hard. I myself didn’t need to heal people from sickness, set them free from bondages of sin, or resurrect dead hearts. I only needed to have faith that God could do it. Whether I’d be given the opportunity to prophesy and pray for people, share my testimony, or build key relationships, I wanted this ministry trip to be just a natural extension of myself.

Looking back, it’s funny to see how the kingdom of God works. “Ask and it will be given to you” (Matthew 7:7). Because this is exactly what happened. During the altar call on the last night of the conference, our team prayed for those who came up to confess, repent, and renounce certain sin patterns in their lives. God led me to pray for a few sisters who were doubting their worth and beauty. Some were seeking approval from men because of broken relationships with their dads, and some were fighting feelings of isolation.

As I was ministering, I was reminded of my first encounter with the Holy Spirit and how He brought to the surface these very same struggles that I discerned was happening in the lives of those at the altar. My own testimony is of how God established me in my identity as Hephzibah, a name that means “The Lord’s delight is in her.” Thus I was able to declare the same truth over these sisters. I was in awe as each one of them came up to me after the conference to let me know how my prayers set them free from self-hatred and condemnation. Their faces were radiant as they shared of how God was restoring their identity as carriers of beauty and crowns instead of ashes.

There were many instances God set up divine appointments during our down times where I was able to connect and build key kingdom relationships. During conversations over meals, I was able to share my testimony of how God reconciled certain relationships in my life and brought me out of that place of disappointment and pain. Through these organic conversations, I could see how God was breathing hope into people’s hearts simply by me sharing the goodness and faithfulness of God in my own life. I constantly witnessed how “the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy” (Revelation 19:10), as the people I met took my stories of breakthrough as keys to unlocking their own.

Personally, it meant a lot for me to see people being empowered and touched by the Holy Spirit and fire of God during this conference. I met the Lord in high school for the first time through Sarang Presbyterian Church in Korea, where the ministry was much more conservative. But as our team was praying for the baptism of the Holy Spirit on individuals and seeing how hungry they were to receive the dunamis power mentioned in Acts 1:8, I can confidently say that God is not confined by denominations. He truly desires to pour out His Spirit on all flesh.

Our team was blessed beyond words by the hospitality and love shown to us from the HolyWave ministry. Testimonies of people being set free from addictions, sexual sins, shame, guilt, and unforgiveness kept rolling in, and we still continue to hear of them. It was a powerful and beautiful exchange of mutual edification.

During this trip, God redefined for me the qualifications of a minister. What pleases God is not perfection but faith, because without faith, it is impossible to please God (Hebrews 1:6). Surely, we carry His glory in jars of clay, to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us (2 Cor. 4:7). God doesn’t call the qualified but instead, He qualifies the called. He will gladly use broken vessels to be His witnesses to the ends of the earth.