TESTIMONIES OF PASTOR OCK SOO PARK

God Did The Works That Was Difficult To Attempt 
While receiving salvation and preaching, God led my heart and allowed me to do many different works for the gospel. For example, IYF, or building the church, missionary school and broadcasting, publishing books; needless to say, these things were things I’ve never done before and so they were burdensome and I hesitated. But, God continued to lead my heart to do these works, fulfilling them one by one. That God was so amazing I couldn’t help but to praise His name. In 1979 we purchased the Sungil Church located in front of the Keimyung University in Daegu and used it as our chapel. The work of the gospel arose fervently. Purchasing that chapel was a big thing. We didn’t have many church members, and the church was expensive, so buying the place was something we couldn’t even dare to attempt. But it was so amazing how God led us so we couldn’t help but buy that place, and allowed us the money to buy it. Although we began with burdens when everything was over, we could only praise and testify that was God’s work. 

God, Please Give Us A Church Too 
In Daegu we rented the second floor of a building with a Chinese restaurant called Hwashinbanjum. But, it was located right next to a bus stop, and if we opened the window in the summertime because it was hot, it was so loud due to the cars, that is why when we moved churches I told the brother to please find a place where it is quiet. The brothers searched the city and found a nice quiet place. That place was located in the Seomun market on the second floor, when I went there a restaurant was located on the bottom with their blinds closed, but it was very quiet and the traffic was not heard either. We liked the remote and quiet second floor place so much that we rented it and had service. But, in the morning it was so quiet and serene that it was as if we were in the countryside, but as evening came, that wasn’t so. Red lights were turned on and young women in hanbok’s(the traditional Korean dress) were urging people in, and we had rented a place that was in the middle of it all. We were located at a place that as people came to church the young ladies would urge them so much that it would be easy for them to be lured to the bars before making it to church. Through this there began to arise brothers and sisters who prayed for a chapel. Later we all prayed, “God, please give us a church too, give us a church too!” 

For Our Circumstance There’s Only Shabby Town And Buildings 
At the time we had leased a building. But, each year the lease rose double. If the brothers and sisters difficultly prepared the money for the raise in the lease, we needed the same amount the next year. It seemed that all we did was to try to pay off the lease each year. We prayed to God for a chapel. At the time all we had were a couple of students and brothers and sisters who haven’t been long at our church. We couldn’t handle the large sum of money needed to purchase a church. Once, I was walking along the road when I saw a church sign hanging on a brick building covered with slates that was about 30 pyoungs big, I thought, “Hey, when will I never have to worry about the rise in rent and have service in our own building?” However, our circumstance didn’t allow us to buy a building like that. Regardless, the heart to buy a church arose in the hearts of the brothers and sisters. We looked for a place we could buy. There is a place called Bangogae, Naedang-dong, in that area there was a 30 pyoung building where a family ran a manual trade. The road was so narrow that it was enough for only a wagon to be able to be pulled through the windy road. The town and building was very run down. But we still thought that if we repair things will be fine, we were just satisfied that it was going to be our own building. 

Two Testimonies That Changed My Heart 
This was the first time our church was established in Seoul, so I often went to Seoul and had service. Our church was established in Seoul Yonggwang-dong, Mapo. I had service there and visited a couple of houses, and one sister gave a testimony, “Pastor, I always lived in an apartment paying rent, but this time I was able to lease a place. It was impossible, but after I had decided in my heart to move to a leased apartment, God allowed me the money and I was able to acquire the place.” It was such grace to hear how although impossible through God’s grace it was possible, and so we moved on to the next house. There a brother gave a testimony, “There was no place for me to stay after being discharged from the army, so I stayed at my friend’s house, but the friend said he couldn’t stand it and told me to get out, so with a saddened heart I left. But, from then on, God helped so I could buy land, build a house, and run a factory.” I heard these testimonies with grace. After concluding my visits, I returned home and before sleeping I bowed my head to pray, but as if God was talking to me the testimony of the sister, and the brother who bought land and now runs a factory arose in my heart. So as I prayed I said to God, “God, are there things I need to decide in faith like the brother and the sister? Why are You allowing me to remember such things?” As I prayed, I thought. “No matter how much I thought of it, what I had to decide upon was buying a church... the building at Bangogae I decided to buy for 23 million won, is it a place God wants to give us? What do I have to decide in faith that God has allowed me to hear these testimonies today?” 

Are You In Your Right Mind? 
As soon as I returned to Daegu, the brothers and sisters said, “Pastor! There’s a good chapel available!” I asked what they were talking about, they said in front of the Daemyung-dong Keimyung University entrance the Sungil Church chapel is very nice, and that would be nice to buy it. They said it cost 65,000,000 won. In 1979 65 million won was too great of a sum for us. The little factory in Bangogae cost 23 million and even that was too much for us. When I saw the brothers and sisters I thought, “Are they in their right minds?” “We can’t, how can we handle 65 million won? No, we can’t. It’s impossible!” I thought. So I thought to decide with all the brothers and sisters gathered together, “Then no one will want to buy the building in front of Keimyung University. That’s what I should do.” So, that Wednesday evening we discussed it in the presence of all the brothers and sisters. I asked them straight forwardly, “Which place would you like to buy, the building at Bangogae or the Sungil Church chapel?” I stressed that it cost 65 million won, so I thought the brothers and sisters would want to buy the building where the family had a manual trade. But, when I asked them to raise their hands, without a single exception, all of them raised their hands to buy the Sungil Church located in front of the Keimyung University. 65 million won! It was too burdensome for me. “It will be hard for the brothers and sisters to pay that large sum.... What happens if we can’t buy that building? All they have to do is not come to church, but what am I supposed to do....” I had these thoughts lacking faith. “What the heck! I should go to that church and tell them it is too expensive and call a price that is too low for them to sell. If they’ll sell at that price that’s great, but if not, then we don’t have to buy it.” With this thought, I began to think about the amount I should ask for them to not sell. I decided that if they will sell the 65 million won place for 47 million won, then we’ll buy it, but if not, we won’t. 

Why Did I Do That? 
With a couple of brothers we went to meet the representatives of the Sungil Church. I told the elderly pastor and elders, “We are not able to buy this place, so we’re not going to buy it. However, if you were to sell it to us for 47 million won, we’ll think about it, but that too would be difficult.” Then the church elders said, “Don’t be so hasty, come in and have a cup of coffee.” But I came back out having decided to buy the place for 55 million won. Without me even knowing I had made the decision, and I thought to myself, “Why did I do that? How can we buy it for 55 million won?” Yet, the brothers who didn’t even know my heart said, “Pastor, you’re good at making deals. We couldn’t even imagine it, how were you able to cut the price down so well?” When we told the brothers and sisters at church that we were buying the place for 55 million won, they were so happy and thankful. It was decided so differently from my thoughts, and the brothers and sisters’ reactions were also so different. So from that day on we prayed to God for that chapel. And, from then on, we saw God working amazingly.

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