A 10 day trip to Korea sounded like a fantasy come true! My Oldest daughter and I updated our passports, and were set to go! My youngest daughter, Judie, was already there in Korea, waiting for us, so we were excitedly on our way!
Judie, now in the Air force, was stationed in Seoul for at least another year. The Korean Tourism and the Military had worked out a reasonably priced tour for military families.
After our long flight, Judie escorted us to the lovely Hotel Hamilton, where we enjoyed a cup of genuine ginseng tea in the hotel restaurant. Later that evening, another restaurant, and more new foods dazzled our palates, while Korean dancers entertained!
Our visit included a tour that took us down the coast to visit the Korean ship yards, then on to Temples and parks. Another beautiful hotel that featured a lavish Korean buffet filled out our evening. Afterward, exploration of the hotel and the grounds beckoned. Two Japanese college students stopped us, and we humored their desire to practice their English language skills.
The Line of Demarcation was on our return to Seoul. It was a sombering experience! Prior to our entry into a building where a center line divided the room, our guide instructed us not to smile or wave at the soldiers who were on the North side of the line. Although the Northern soldiers were quite young and walked by the windows rather than marching, we were asked to stay on our side and not to cross the line. They seemed harmless enough, all the while smiling and trying to get our attention
The tour completed, we still had some free days which prompted a bus ride to another town for a visit to some factories. Already experienced, Judie taught us how to bargain and say the words, “Better price.” Because Judie could use the base Post Office, shipping could be done for a pittance! Our treasures preceded us home.
With so much to see and do, our minds could barely wrap around it all!
One of the highlights of the trip was a visit to Yoido Full Gospel Church, a Pentecostal church on Yeouido Island in Seoul, South Korea. With about 830,000 members, the large crowds were accommodated with seven Sunday services! Seated in the huge balcony, visitors from other countries listened to the service in sixteen languages via ear phones. Amazing! Later in another area, an American missionary explained the concept of Prayer Mountain, and home cell groups, which lead to the exponential growth of this church. It was phenomenal to see such organization and commitment!
All too soon, it was time for us to leave and bid farewell to Korea and to our Judie. Even though she would be rejoining us in a few months, leaving her so far behind was difficult.
As Christians, when our family or friends pass on and go to heaven, we are comforted in the knowledge that we will see them again. For now we may be sad, because they will be missed; but we also rejoice, since we know we will be reunited with them one day soon.
Jesus has gone to heaven ahead of us and is preparing a place for us. Entry into heaven is by “Passport,” which is by receiving Jesus into your heart. He will be there waiting to give us the tour of Heaven.
Though many of us will never be able to explore all the wonderful places on earth nothing will be more exotic, more breathtaking or more satisfying than when we arrive in Heaven! It will be the grandest tour ever experienced! You can count on it. What a Day that will be!