Seth's Start to 2021: Progress and Planting!
T'was 10:30 pm on Saturday, February 13th.
Invading the dark walls and floorboards, a long quake kept me awake in bed. Earthquake seconds at high magnitude feel like minutes are crawling by with each tremor. In a word, powerlessness.
"What do you do now that the earth is shaking?"
"Is this serious enough that I should duck under a desk or even head outside?" Reportedly, it was a 10-year delayed aftershock of the Japanese megaquake in 2011.
Our church planting base is quite removed from the epicenter and we didn't feel the full 7.1 quakes on Saturday. Praise God, we are all safe with no issues to report in Noborito. Thanks to everyone who sent messages asking if I was doing okay. 🙏🏻
Power outages and some injuries did occur closer to the epicenter in Northern Japan. Please join us in praying for revival and comfort in Fukushima.
It's still been an exciting month for Kingdom Work in Japan.
- Tales from Choose Life -
It was late, after a long day. Supervising Choose Life's chats I hopped on to see how our volunteers were responding.
An Intercom chat with a ~10 min timestamp jumped up in my browser. Just enough time for me to jump on and live chat with this person. In English, no less!
Over the course of our conversation, I met a young adult who shared her name. I'll call her Sarah. Struggling with family tensions, she was asking for guidance and prayer. I pointed her to the peace she can only find in Jesus, even as her circumstances remained difficult.
We prayed together. She mentioned how meaningful it was to honestly share her heart and receive prayer. Didn't seem like she had many allies left.
Honored to know we're here to be those international Christian allies.
We exist as Choose Life and church planters for the many Sarahs in Japan.
We exist for the hurting young and hurting old. The many who have not yet tasted the love of their Father.
Born into a wealthy international home, love and acceptance seemed so scarce in Sarah's family experience.
Please pray for Sarah, that she continues to press into perfect love. That finds Christ in her next hour of need.
Our conversations with Choose Life have included many young people lately. Many of them are dealing with self-harm and cutting. Some struggle with bullying. Please pray we can take great care of the precious Japanese kids that are chatting with us these days.
Reminds me of why I came:
In our team preparations, many moons ago, we prayed about this young lady. About these kids. My missions experience at ORU was pivotal in firmly hearing God's call to serve Japan.
In our initial training exercises, we brainstormed the kinds of people that we would serve in Japan. That list included the hurt and those struggling with depression. It's an honor to serve that vision now in a practical and powerful way.
God uses so many small details in our lives for his glory.
Here's the rest of our monthly ministry highlight reel: 🎬 🙌🏻
- I had the recent honor of praying with a new friend, Daiki to confess Jesus as his Lord and savior!!
- Our first long term discipleship group with Choose Life is all set to start on Tuesday mornings at 10 am from March 9th.
- We finished upgrading our Choose Life website system and design. Now Choose Life is reaching out in English and Japanese.
- After needed changes to our advertising system, we now receive some English and more Japanese chat responses.
- I've been able to engage some of our Japanese new chat guests. We are intentionally sharing the gospel and other Jesus-centered resources. I'm sharing through an advanced machine translation system called Deep L.
- Our online family group is growing with new visitors stopping by in the last few weeks.
- Choose Life also interviewed our first new volunteer!
- Finally, after 3 years of searching, we found the ideal web platform for running Choose Life as we grow.
- Our Bible College course on Genesis 2 is in full swing.
Please pray for the young people in Japan. Let's present those that have contacted us about self-harming to the great physician. It's been about 7 young ladies in the last 3 weeks. He's the great psychiatrist and consummate psychologist as well.
Thanks for your continued prayer, hard work, and sacrifice for this mission in Japan. You are making God's dream a reality family. It's an honor to be on the same team with you, with the same great commission.
What is exciting about your own life story these days?