Hello IGSMers! This past Saturday, we went to Marin County near SF for a beautiful hike! Boy, I have to say that it was a gorgeous day, with a clear blue sky and the strong waves of the vast Pacific Ocean seemed to wash away all of our stress from graduate school and life. I can’t wait to go out there again! After the hike, we went to SF for a yummy lunch (Korean Chinese style!), stopped by a Chinese bakery and then headed to the Palace of Fine Arts. As you can see, Ming had a lot of fun with the panoramic feature on his smart phone and took a pretty unusual picture below (see if you can figure out why it’s unusual and how he did it). Hope you can join us next time!
Here some more pictures we took there. Enjoy!
Happy New Year! This past Friday we had our first Bible study of the year and many new friends joined us. Ming gave us a thought-provoking Bible study from the Gospel of John, Chapter 1, with the following important question in mind, “Who is this Jesus?” This Bible study set the stage for the entire winter quarter as we will continue to study the Gospel of John and see how it answers, ‘Who is this Jesus?”.
Afterward, we had a really fun time playing “Best of the Best”, which actually turned out to be rather intense (look at some of serious faces below) as well. Check out some of the pictures below.
Each of these students represent the ”quickest hands” from their team (and also probably the most serious-faced as well…)
This round is for those who represent the “best teamwork” for their team. The goal here is to drop a toothbrush into a cup using just two pieces of floss. Trust me. Without good teamwork and team chemistry, this is really hard to do.
We had quite a laugh here as these lucky students were determined to have the “best smile”. They are using their well-developed facial muscle from all of their smiles to detach post-its on their faces. I don’t think they were smiling during that time though
Hey guys! Last Friday, we had an awesome BBQ bible study! We had some delicious hamburgers fresh off the grill! It was a great time for all of us to mingle with one another and enjoy this meal. There were some new faces and a lot of old faces too! So it was great to see everybody especially as we’re nearing the end of the school year!
Afterwards, we had our awesome bible study! It was actually a recap of all the “Gospel of John” series messages we had this year! We were split into groups, and each group was assigned to cover 2 main points for one of the messages. Also, each group was to act out either a modern version of the text or one of the 2 main points. It was a great way to end the “Gospel of John” series. We had loads of fun!
After bible study, we had watermelon and cake for dessert, and then we had games! Overall, it was a fun time for all of us.
Check out the pictures we took of the event!
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Hey guys! Last night, we had our last bible study for the school year! We ended with our study on John 13 about Jesus washing the feet of the disciples. We realized that Jesus was able to show the full extent of His love through this symbolic act of washing His disciples’ feet and eventually dying on the cross for our sins. This kind of act was unheard of during that time, and even now it can be perplexing to many people. Jesus even washed the feet of Judas who would eventually betray Him. Even though Jesus knew that Judas was going to betray Him, He still washed his feet. You would imagine someone who is high in power and position to punish or kill such a betrayer. But no! We don’t see that in Jesus. He used His power to love and serve! He humbled Himself so much to the point of taking the posture of a lowly slave! This is uncharacteristic of kings and people of high power these days and especially back then! But that is why Jesus is so different! He was more than willing to wash His disciples’ feet because He loved everyone of them, even His betrayer. Jesus did not come here to flaunt His power before us. He came here so that we could all be restored in a right relationship with Him. So the question is, how are you going to respond to this invitation of love that Jesus has to offer? Will you receive it and brush it off and do nothing with it? Or are you going to embrace it and share it with the world? The choice is left for each one of us to make.
Because this was the last bible study for the academic year, it was a special one, and there were many who came out! We will, however, continue with bible study for the following weeks into the Summer. But we might have it somewhere else, so please stay tuned for any updates! And as usual, check out the photos we took!
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Hey guys! On this past Friday, we continued on our “Gospel of John” series with John 8 about the woman caught in adultery. We learned that the Pharisees were using her to trap Jesus. Although it was obvious that the woman was a sinner before everyone, the Pharisees were also sinners except their sins were hidden. The Pharisees asked Jesus whether or not they should stone the woman for her sin, but Jesus’ response was, “If any one of you is without sin, let him be the first to throw a stone at her.” This left the Pharisees thinking about their own sins, but instead of coming to Jesus in confession and asking for forgiveness, they just dropped their stones and left. This was a tragic response by the Pharisees because they could have been reconciled to God through Jesus, but instead, they missed that opportunity. This is a good lesson for all of us. What is our response to Jesus when that opportunity comes? Do we try to deal with our sins on our own? Or do we go to Jesus?
We see here that the woman recognized that Jesus was the only one who had the authority to condemn her. But what was Jesus’ response? Instead of condemning the woman, He forgave her and told her to leave her life of sin. This woman was able to experience God’s forgiveness and unconditional love! Likewise, if we want to experience this in our own lives, we need to come to Jesus just like this woman did. We encourage you to come out to our bible studies and find out more about who Jesus is!
Here are pictures we took that night! We also had a sports night at our church building, 607!
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Hey guys! From last Friday until Sunday, a lot of us got to go on a trip to Yosemite! We stayed at our church’s “Yosemite house” and enjoyed a lot of delicious food and fun games. And then we went on a scheduled tour visit to some of the sites in Yosemite which included Bridalveil, lower Yosemite Falls, and Mirror Lake. Although many of us were tired from all the hiking, it was well worth the trip! This was a great time for all of us to get to know one another more and experience and appreciate the beauty of God’s creation.
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Hey guys! Last night, we continued on our “Gospel of John”series with John 5 about the healing of the invalid at the pool of Bethesda. This invalid was sick for 38 years! You can only imagine the kind of pain he went through! At the pool of Bethesda, many disabled people went to get well. This invalid, however, could not even help himself to get into the pool! What might have gone through his mind? He could’ve thought, “If only I went into the pool, my life would be at peace.” How many of us have this kind of attitude? If only we had this certain thing in our lives, then life would be perfect. Some of us may value a perfect job, perfect marriage, money, success, recognition, etc. These things may be “pools” for us. What is it for you?
We see that later Jesus comes by and knows what the invalid really needs. Not only does the invalid need physical healing, but more importantly, spiritual healing. What kind of “illnesses” do we need to get healed from? All of us, I’m sure, have been exposed to things like pride, jealousy, anger, lust, selfishness, laziness, apathy, etc. Well, just as Jesus asked the invalid, He is asking us today, “Do you want to get well?” He doesn’t mean just physically, but spiritually. For Him to ask this question, He is implying that He is the one who is capable of healing us.
Do you believe that Jesus can heal you of whatever “infirmities” you are suffering from? For the invalid, he didn’t know who this Jesus was, but he had just enough faith to trust His words. And what happened? At once, the invalid was cured! Jesus is inviting all of us to a relationship with Him. This is what will heal us of our sickness. What is your response though?
Hey guys! So on Friday, we continued on our Gospel of John series with John 9 about the healing of the blind man! Jesus came to a man who was born blind and cured him of his blindness, not just physically but more importantly, spiritually. The blind man listened and obeyed Jesus and because of that, he was able to be restored! The Pharisees and his parents could not believe it. There were certain barriers that prevented them from believing that Jesus was the Christ, the Son of God. This left us with the question, “Which barriers prevent us from believing in Jesus?”
It may be intellectual barriers. Some of us may think that miracles are not scientifically possible. It may be fears of being humiliated or excluded by friends who are not Christian. These kinds of fears are legitimate and real. What’s holding you back from believing in Jesus?
Although these fears may be discouraging for many of us, we can see that even though this blind man was humiliated since birth and discouraged from his blindness, he still kept holding on and persevering to obey and follow Jesus. And because of his obedience, he was able to experience not just a physical healing, but also a spiritual healing. His belief in Jesus only increased. And that’s what happens! The more you stay committed to seeking Jesus, the closer you will be to the truth. It’s just like lifting weights. The more you exercise your muscles, the more you will increase your ability to lift. Hopefully, the life of the blind man would be an encouragement for us all to not give up on Jesus! Let’s keep seeking Him!
Hey guys! So we continued on our “Gospel of John” Series with John 4! We learned about the encounter between Jesus and the Samaritan woman at the well. This was a very unlikely encounter because back then, Jews did not associate well with Samaritans. Plus, the woman had a shameful past that was looked down upon by the people in her community. She had five husbands, and the one she was with was not her husband. Jesus knew all this about her, but He wanted her to open up to Him with full honesty and vulnerability. Instead of condemning her, however, Jesus offered her an invitation to receive “living water” that would never run dry.
This response by Jesus left us questioning, “What do we thirst for in life?” Fun? Comfort? Stability? Success? Recognition? We learned that her thirst might have been romance. Perhaps, she tried to find the right husband, which is probably why she had so many husbands. Although Jesus knew this woman’s terrible past, He still reached out to her with compassion. Likewise, He is reaching out to all of us. He wants a personal, honest, and genuine relationship that will last forever and never run dry. The question is, are we willing to be open and honest before Him just like the Samaritan woman?
Here are the pictures we took!
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