Danny Lee

My dad was a pastor, my mom was the church pianist, and both my granddads were pastors. So our home was steeped in the life of the church and replete with Christian books and imagery. Like any faithful Reformed Korean church family, we adhered to 8 points of Calvinism (because 5 weren’t enough), and were driven to a legalism undergirded by an unhealthy and functionally grace-less fear of God’s judgment and holiness. This was bound to erode. My dad’s death before he turned 39 and I was 10 hastened this erosion. But instead of outright rebellion, “faith” was replaced by a love and obedience to my mom that could only be Spirit-born. God was becoming a heartless masochist to my confused soul, but the love and sacrifices of my mom were the fabric holding my world together. So exposure to that form of the Gospel, confusion over my dad’s death, and my mom’s devotion turned God into a monster and the belief that my only recourse was to love my mom.

But God was faithful. Freshman year in college, 3000 miles from home (Los Angeles), isolated and lonely, He broke my pride and self-dependence. He exposed the self-condemnation and anger incurred from the false understanding that my dad’s death was God’s wrathful response to my sin. He brought a mentor into my life who showed God’s grace and love, and held my hand through John’s Gospel. God showed me that miraculous grace and love that satisfies His judgment and holiness. My sin and unworth lay bare and horrific, not for the sake of condemnation, but in order for God’s grace and love to radiate and bear fruit in my life.

God restored and built my soul to love Him, Grace (wifey), Jasper (babyboy), and the souls He’s surrounded me with. Far too often, I fail. There are few things more humbling than being confronted with how inadequate I am to love and sacrifice. But nothing gives more comfort and peace and confidence than knowing God gives strength and grace for each day.

And in serving Restoration, my desire is to use two eyes, two ears, and one mouth, in those ratios … to be a conscientious listener who pursues the opinions and experiences of others, to learn and grow in all I don’t know and fail in, to reflect God’s faithfulness in all He’s imbued me with. My hope and confidence is that God will use this servant to love His people, as you all need and He desires.

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