Story North Korea | 19 February 2023

Sister Dreamer from North Korea- I dream for His Kingdom come to North Korea


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Sister Dreamer [1], a North Korean woman, left behind all that she knew and began a perilous escape from North Korea. Although she only encountered Jesus Christ in China, even before she left North Korea, He had been guiding her, moulding her, and preparing her for His grand dream of restoring North Korea and its church. Just like Joseph the Dreamer from the Old Testament, Sister Dreamer hopes to live a life dedicated to her people. It is her hope to return to North Korea and strengthen the Church to grow in Christ. Through her story, we discover God’s amazing grace in searching for a lost soul and using it to strengthen what remains of the Body of Christ in North Korea. The guidance of the Lord is evident in every twist and turn of life, every mountain and valley, being intricately woven into a masterpiece.


A dreamer in the making

Born and raised in North Korea, I was a patriotic kid who revered the supreme leaders. While I was still in primary school, to my amazement, I discovered that I had an aptitude for sports. I thought for sure that my life’s calling was to be a highly decorated athlete and bring pride and joy to the supreme leaders, Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il. It was my dream, but my parents discouraged me from pursuing it.

I studied diligently, finished my university education, and even worked for some time before going back to university for my postgraduate education. Even though my dream of being an athlete was behind me, I was pursuing yet another dream: to marry a wealthy and powerful man from the Party or from the army and live a comfortable life. Little did I know that my life was about to be turned upside down.

During that time, Kim Il Sung, the supreme leader whose reign we thought would be eternal, suddenly died. His death and the instability that followed plunged the country into an economic collapse. Millions of North Koreans were starving to death. Those that were alive were scavenging for food in farms and woods for the better part of most days. Hearing about the people who were crossing the border and
going to China in hopes of a better life, my mother and I too hatched out a plan to escape our eventual slow death.


The Journey

On one pitch dark night, leaving my siblings and other family members behind, my mother and I set out on our escape with the help of a broker. We were fully relying on the directions of the broker, as we had no idea where we were or where we were going. While crossing a river to get to China, my mother never made it out of the water to the other side. Our journey had just started but sadly my mother did not live to see the happy ending we were looking for.

I managed to find my uncle and aunt who were living in China. They were living very modest lives but compared to North Korea, living with them felt like heaven. As my uncle and aunt were Buddhists, I also embraced Buddhism and even practiced it. During this time, I met a South Korean woman working for a Christian organization who, one day, invited me to participate in a program where I would have the opportunity to learn about Bible and get some pocket money. She was very nice to me, so I happily obliged. This seemingly incidental turn of events would change the trajectory of my life. Little by little my heart was opened to the gospel and before long, I was praying and attending Sunday services at a nearby church. Though I accepted Jesus Christ, my life was not short of challenges and tribulations.

While living with my aunt and uncle, one of my cousins was against me staying there and was threatening them by saying that he would report me to the police. With every passing day, the family conflict intensified, and finally my cousin reported on me. To make things worse, I was reported not as an illegal immigrant, but as a secret agent from North Korea. Government agents were quick to come looking for me, but by the grace of God, I was able to hide from these agents and escape to another location.

After leaving my aunt’s house, I was on the run from place to place. At every juncture, I met wonderful people who helped me and cared for me. Especially, Mr. and Mrs. Jireh [2] a Christian couple in China, were instrumental in my spiritual growth. “I will definitely go back, set their house on fire and kill everyone,” I once furiously told to Mr. Jireh, to which he listened intently and responded by telling me the story of Joseph, whose brothers sold him as a slave, yet he was able to forgive them. Mr. and Mrs. Jireh were also kind enough to help me get settled and find a job.

I had many difficulties during my time in China. At a time when I could not even afford to get medicine, I was diagnosed with tuberculosis. Before, my anger was towards my cousin who betrayed me, but now, I also felt resentful towards God. “Why didn’t you just kill me back in North Korea? After all these suffering, is this how it ends?” I would sometimes cry out to God. For a long time, I couldn’t go to work or visit anybody, but God used this time to transform me and help me grow closer to Him. By the power of God’s Word, I started to find strength again. He spoke to me through dreams and showed me that He was truly there. God raised brothers and sisters of the church to take care of me.

During my time of recovery, I kept thinking to myself, “if God called me like Joseph to save my own people, I should not stop here.” It was then that I felt the desire to go to South Korea and study theology. Getting better treatment was another factor that motivated me to go to South Korea. With the help from a deaconess and another organization, I was able to go to the South Korean embassy and stay there until an opportunity came for me to go to South Korea. I was dreaming of the day that I get to step foot on my new homeland. That day did not come for over a year.

I was waiting month after month for my new beginning. Being agitated by all the waiting, sometimes I would even rebel against the staff inside the embassy. But as soon as I sat down for my personal prayer time, my sullen heart would melt, and I would repent for how silly I had been. I would be filled with gratitude for the safety and comfort of the facilities in the embassy. In that time of waiting, God once again spoke to me through a dream and showed me that my prayers were not falling on deaf ears.


The new beginning

I was jumping with joy when I finally got to South Korea, as I had been eagerly waiting for so long. To my surprise, doctors in South Korea cleared me and told me that I was fit as a fiddle. I praised God for restoring my health. For once in my life, I felt that everything was falling into place. Just like how God used 40-years in the wilderness to train Moses to lead the people of Israel, I was also called for such a journey. My athletic ability and my education were all part of my ego. In my journey, I had to be on the run, I could not speak the language and was barely able to support myself. I always had to ask for help. Ten years of such “wilderness” brought me to the lowest point. Looking back, I can now see that God has been using my journey to break me, teach me humility, and mould me into a person that can be used by Him.

Until now, coming to South Korea was the dream. But slowly but surely, God was putting, not just another dream but a vision in my mind—to serve my fellow North Korean brothers and sisters.


Answering the call

After coming to South Korea, I was able to study theology and participate in ministries serving my people from North Korea. I could not have been happier to share the message of Jesus Christ with my brothers and sisters here, at every chance I got. I even led various prayer meetings with them. I was continually meeting new people and developing friendships. I was not just a minister to them—I was one of them.

Ever since I encountered the Gospel of Jesus Christ in China, God has been faithful to me. He was there when I lost my mother and stayed at my uncle’s house. He was there when I escaped to the home of Mr. and Mrs. Jireh. He was there when I was fighting fever and cough all alone in a small damp basement. He was also there with me in my time of waiting at the embassy. I had acknowledged the existence of God and had also been praying for some time, but it was during these times of uncertainty and helplessness, that I truly experienced Him in the most tangible ways. All these experiences helped me serve my people even during challenging times, as I am confident that He is always with me.

I thank God for visiting me first and calling me to participate in His mission. God spoke to me through dreams and helped me be a dreamer for His kingdom. I will forever praise him and give myself to Him as a tool for His mission. One day, when the time comes, I will go back to my home country and devote myself to the Christians and the Church there. Above all, I would like to see His kingdom come and His will be done in North Korea.

*Names changed for security reasons

please pray
  • Please pray for Sister Dreamer, that she will faithfully hold on to God’s vision for North Korea. Pray also for wisdom and guidance as she continues the ministry to her people.
  • Please pray for the Open Doors ministry in North Korea, that we will continue to seek God’s face,
  • declare His Word, and become His hands and feet to persecuted underground believers.
  • Please pray for secret believers in North Korea, that they will keep their eyes focused on Jesus
  • Christ, be strengthened in His power, and experience the presence of the Holy Spirit wherever they are.
  • Please pray for the shelter and safehouse ministry, that it will continue to strengthen the underground churches in North Korea.
  • Please pray for the secret delivery projects for food, medicine, and Christian resources, that God will use these projects to provide for the needs of underground believers.

Today, if you are able, will you stand with persecuted Christians? 

Every PHP 2,000 could give Bibles to five believers fleeing extreme persecution.

Every PHP 3,000 could provide refugees fleeing extreme persecution with a food package and essential medicine.

Every PHP 4,000 could provide spiritual and financial support for three believers fleeing extreme persecution.

Thank you and may God richly bless you.