Monday, October 26, 2009

Asian American Sports with Rick Quan: Interview with Michael Chang

When I found out about Asian American Sports with Rick Quan, I could hardly wait to share my thoughts on this unique website. Rick Quan is a Christian and had been a sportscaster in the San Francisco Bay Area for a number of years. In April 2008, he started his own video production company, Rick Quan Productions. With the sports website, Rick is doing for Asian American athletes what I am doing for Asian American Christian artists and writers--showcasing the talents of sometimes overlooked Asian Americans.

At the time of this writing, Rick has posted seven video interviews of athletes. Featured this week is Michael Chang, retired tennis champion and devout Christian. Besides enjoying life with his new wife, Amber, Michael keeps busy with the Michael Chang Foundation, a faith-based ministry.

Other athletes profiled are Oakland A's catcher Kurt Suzuki, Olympic gymnast Kevin Tan, basketball player Willie "Woo Woo" Wong, Mariners' manager Don Wakamatsu, tennis champ Peanut Louie Harper, and LPGA golfer Christina Kim.

In most of the interviews, Rick asks the athletes if they have experienced racial prejudice in their sport. Interestingly, very few say they have. Each of the stars also gives advice to young Asian American athletes.

I will definitely bookmark Rick's website and eagerly await the next interview.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Francis Chan's Forgotten God: Reversing Our Tragic Neglect of the Holy Spirit

The topic of the Holy Spirit can become a litmus test. What you believe about him either puts you in one camp or another. But Francis Chan tries to emphasize what all Christians basically believe about the Holy Spirit. He shows that when Christians truly allow the Holy Spirit full control, marvelous changes can happen. He says, "I'm not going to get all charismatic." Neither does he discount what charismatics believe. He respects what theologians on both sides of the issue have written.

Some pointed questions he asks are "Why Do You Want Him?" Do you have right reasons for wanting to be filled with the Holy Spirit? Do you want to draw attention to yourself or to God? Do you want his power for selfish reasons or to edify other believers? I must be able to answer these questions satisfactorily before God can use me for His glory.

Francis tries to make doctrine practical. Churches can produce wonderful programs, attracting crowds, but if the Holy Spirit is not present and active, what good is that? (I'm paraphrasing.)

Interspersed between chapters are stories of Christians who have submitted to the Holy Spirit and are greatly used by him. Some are famous like Joni Eareckson Tada and Francis Schaeffer. But most are ordinary people whose lives are filled with supernatural power from the Holy Spirit. I appreciate the fact he includes Asians and Hispanics as well as others here. Francis's writing can appeal to any ethnicity.
Fogotten God gives food for thought. More importantly, it challenges Christians to not forget the third person of the Trinity and live lives that reflect his indwelling presence.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Inheritance Magazine: A Periodical for Asian American Christians

Sorry I haven't posted in a couple of weeks. I just found out about a cool magazine especially for Asian American Christians. Inheritance Magazine has already published three quarterly issues. The periodical is available as a hardcopy and also online. It tackles contemporary topics Asian American Christians face. For instance, the Fall 2009 issue discusses falling in love, Asian American Christian-style. Topics include dating, interracial/intercultural marriage, "passive Asian guys" and more.

Inheritance's mission is to "unify the next generation of Asian American Christians." Each article strives to provide Scriptural insight, guidance, and encouragement for readers. Their goal is to create a unified and determined identity for Asian American Christians — a culturally aware and pro-active generation to be on the forefront of the Great Commission as one people.

Sean Lin is the publisher with three main staff members. Several different writers, artists and photographers contribute to each issue. As a non-profit organization, it strives to distribute free of charge and without advertisements.

I enjoyed reading Esther Huang M.'s story on her interracial marriage. When she first started dating her future husband, her parents required him to fill out a curriculum vitae, or CV, similar to a job resume. If he had been Chinese, they wouldn't have needed him to, but since he was Caucasian, they had no other way of finding out more about him.

As second, third, and fourth generation Asian American Christians grow numerically, Inheritance will help them grow spiritually and strengthen their sense of identity.