God has been very gracious to us this summer, both in ministry, and personally. It’s always amazing to see the many ways He provides for us, how He cares for us, how He leads us, how He comforts us, and how He matures us. Our Father is awesome!
August was an incredibly wet month for those of us who live in Tokyo. Beginning on August 1, we had rain every day for 21 consecutive days. It was the second-longest wet streak on record for August. The record occurred in 1977, with 22 consecutive rainy days, just one more day than we had this year.
It was in the middle of this rainy streak that we held our annual summer camp. This is the camp that we asked prayer for in our last letter. It was a 3 day camp that was held with several other Baptist churches in our area. Altogether, there were 63 attenders, including 10 from our church. Thankfully most of the camp was held indoors, and we had only two activities, a bonfire and a canoe outing, that required us to be outside. By God’s grace, the rain literally stopped a few hours before each activity, and then resumed shortly after they were finished!
One of the greater blessings for me personally was to see one of our new Christians, Takamasa Harashima, who was saved last year, attend camp for the first time. He was able to get off work just a few days before camp started, and it was so encouraging to see his joy of meeting Christians from other churches. It was clear that the preaching, as well as the counsel and fellowship he received from other believers, was a great benefit to him. We were reminiscing about camp just a few days ago, and his comment was, “If only I had gone to camp years ago, how different would my life be now!” There are still many in our church who would greatly benefit from this time, and we pray that Takamasa, along with those who attended, will be an encouragement to the rest of our church family in attending next year.
Tyler’s Summer Return
On a personal note, as is the case for many missionary families, our family is very close. It was with heavy hearts that we left our son Tyler back in the States as he began his college studies. Our home church, Landmark Baptist Church in Louisville, generously purchased a round-trip plane ticket for Tyler to spend time with us this summer. For us as a family, it was an incredible encouragement to have our son back! Please keep him in your prayers as he begins his second year of studies.
Conflict with North Korea
Over the past several months, the conflict with North Korea has been escalating. Several rockets have been recently fired over Japan which is causing great concern to many here. Please pray that even in this time of uncertainty, God would give our fellow brothers and sisters not only grace and comfort, but also boldness to share the Gospel. We confidently rest in the assurance that our Father, Who has all things under His control, will use even this conflict to display His magnificent glory!
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