Asian Americans and their churches have often unknowingly worked against the purposes of the Gospel. Instead of unity, the habits borne out of the immigrant experience have led to divisiveness. Instead of rest for the weary, it has led to burnout for both laity and clergy. Instead of building bridges to other communities, often we have remained in a state of navel-gazing.
John Lee is one of the ones who’s not willing to let the status quo remain. In our conversations, he’s been hungry to see churches unite, to see exhausted leaders refreshed, and worship leaders given the opportunity to share. To that end, he’s started re:charge and their first event is June 9th in Wheeling, IL. If you’re in the area…check it out and be blessed. This is just the beginning, but I believe that it’s great vision that God has given my brother and I love being a witness.
Check out their mission and vision statement:
We are a like-minded group of individuals from local 2nd Generation Asian (meaning that our parents immigrated to North America from Asia and we were born and raised in the U.S.) churches in the suburbs of Chicago.
Burnout is a common occurrence among those who serve in the 2nd Gen church. While 2nd Gen ministries in Chicagoland are abundant, most of them are small in size (ranging anywhere from 10-100 people). However, these ministries are often primarily fueled by passionate people who willing sacrifice their personal time and resources. Great need and a lack of manpower combine to create this snowball effect called burnout.
Isaiah 40:30-31 says: “Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.”
The leaders of re:charge believe that even though burnout is the reality that most 2nd Gen churches face, hope can be found when we hope in the Lord. Re:charge aims to provide a source of refreshment to the weary and make this hope real by setting the stage and creating an environment for God to work in.
We have O.N.E. hope:
Offering – creating an atmosphere of worship with the most gifted and anointed speakers, worship leaders, musicians, and songwriters can help torenew the joy, excitement, and passion of leaders by reminding them Who they are truly serving.
Networking – connecting servants from different churches can help generate fresh perspectives, new ideas, and unique approaches to ministry to alleviate the burden of the burnt out individual who feels like he or she has to go it alone.
Empowering – strengthening the soul of the servant and giving practical and implementable suggestions to their ministry ultimately empowers not only the local church, but the global Church. By bringing in the best that the 2nd Gen has to offer, we ultimately want to empower the 2nd Gen to give back to the Church at large by developing leadership among all of those involved with re:charge.
At this stage, re:charge is planned as a single evening event running 3-4 times a year.