by Marilyn Borst

I am not much of a sports fan, but I am easily caught up in the excitement of the Olympics. Much to my husband’s surprise, I am glued to the television and cheer for countries not my own: the Dutch in speed skating, the Russians in curling, the Norwegians in cross-country skiing. Having spent so much time “on the road” and out of this country, I guess that I am easily “at home” in other cultures. Some of that “ease” comes from discovering that people are more alike than they are different, as these photos may suggest: kids love to play in model trains, women out for an afternoon outing enjoy an ice cream cone, a family in their “Sunday best” take a photo in front of a lovely flower display, a choir robes up and leads in worship.

Unremarkable, these photos I took. Albeit, this is North Korea – a place I had the privilege to visit in 2008, thanks to Presbyterian mentor/saints Insik Kim and Syngman Rhee. The rhetoric in our country these days is quite hostile to North Korea – demonizing, in fact. As a Christian, I must always “step back” and ask, “how does Christ view these people?” We all know that answer, I think. And if we don’t, the writer of the book of Revelation can help. After this I looked, and behold, a great multitude that no one could number, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb. [7:9a] Some of these faces are quite likely to appear before that throne, in front of that Lamb. North Koreans. Standing next to you. Standing next to me. Remarkable.

Marilyn Borst
Associate Director for Partnership Development

The Outreach Foundation