Here are our most recent prayer letters. Enjoy!
Lack of parking spaces. I hadn’t realized how much I’ve missed this problem. How thankful I am to have it once again! As the COVID restrictions have been gradually easing here in Japan, Sunday services have also been gradually getting fuller and fuller. New families, new believers, and those who haven’t been able to come in a long time are once again filling the seats, connecting with one another, building relationships, and working to reach those around them. God is good! Did You Hear!? In our last prayer letter, I got to share with you about one of the ladies who trusted Christ named “Yoko.” She was one who was saved recently through the Bible study of another missionary lady in a nearby city. The other day, Bethany was at a park with Asher, and Yoko happened to see them off in the distance. She excitedly came up to Bethany and said, “Did you hear!? Did you hear!? I trusted Jesus!” The joy in her heart was clear to see! God had graciously called us to be faithful in planting the Gospel and another to water that seed, as God produced the bountiful work of salvation in her soul. And in holding ...Read more
Over the years, we’ve seen people from all walks of life come to know Jesus through our ministry here in Japan. Some of the stories of how people have come to know Jesus have been incredible. Let me share with you the accounts of two women who have been rescued and redeemed by Jesus. Both have an eternal future that is secure because of who they now are in Christ. Both have begun their walk as followers of Jesus, but the path that has led to their salvation, and the path that they will be on as followers of Jesus are quite different. (Real names have been changed to protect privacy.) A Tale of Two Salvations Eiko had come into contact with Kenji, a young man in her workplace. They both were interested in each other, and as they got to know each other, she quickly discovered that Kenji was a Christian, and that his faith in Jesus meant much more to him than how so many around her viewed religion. One day, Kenji invited her to meet his parents who were also Christians, and to visit the church they attended (Akigawa Baptist Church) to see more of what Christians believed. That ...Read more
For the last few months, as we’ve been able to meet together, it’s been encouraging to see our church family continuing to grow in many different ways. Our outreach events have helped many new people to hear the Gospel, and we’re seeing consistent growth as a church family as well. Our Father is so good and kind in how he cares for us! Outreach Events- They kept showing up! In November, about a month and a half after the emergency status in Tokyo was lifted, we held our first “tentative” outreach event with a Thanksgiving dinner Sunday. I had no idea how many people would come, as people were still a little wary of Covid. So, we decided to hold the event at our church, and set up tables to see what would happen. In no time, our little auditorium was filled! That Sunday we had 9 first-time visitors, along with many friends and family members of our church family who had been away for nearly a year. So, for Christmas, we decided to rent a hall to have more space, and hold two events back-to-back. On Saturday, December 18, we held a children’s Christmas event, and then on Sunday, December 19, ...Read more
For those of you who haven’t been able to meet for a period of time, do you remember that moment when you finally get back together, sing that first song, and hear your voices once again join together with vigor in praising your Father? And as you look around, you see that the emotion welling up in you is also on the edge of bursting out on the faces of your brothers and sisters in Christ as well! We felt that again. And it was SO GOOD! …Aaaaand We’re Back! I waited a little longer than normal in writing this because I wanted to be able to tell you that we have finally, once again, been able to meet again. And boy does it feel AMAZING! To sing together, to enjoy the warm fellowship between the services, to hear the laughter and warm greetings of one another as they catch up from the week. For me personally, it’s a welcome reprieve from staring into the cold, empty lens of the camera that I’ve been preaching to for most of this year. How refreshing it is to be able to once again see the attentive gaze of our church family as they respond ...Read more
If you keep up with our letters, you may notice that this letter sounds a lot like our last letter. And you would be correct. While on the surface, we may not notice much change to our situation, below the surface… our Father is always working. He is faithfully giving grace and strength to those who are His own, while drawing more to Himself through the redemption of His Son! Sigh… Here in Tokyo, it seems that over the last year, it’s been a cycle of our church family getting to enjoy gathering together for brief moments in between long periods of states of emergency. In our last letter, we were just starting another state of emergency that was supposed to last until the end of May. It was ultimately extended until the end of June. We were able to meet for these last three weeks, before Tokyo declared yet another state of emergency. Starting this Sunday, we will be going back to online services until at least the end of August. This means that beginning in September, our church family has only been able to gather together corporately for 8 Sundays this entire year. It has also meant that we’ve been ...Read more