Friday, November 13, 2009

JAPAN 2009
(Surprised by God)

Romans 8:28 "We know that all things work together for good to those who love God."

(We can be sure that every detail of our lives of love for God is worked into something good. TM)

Oswald Chambers says . . . God by His providence brings you into circumstances that you can't understand at all, but the Spirit of God understands. God brings you to places, among people, and into certain conditions to accomplish a definite purpose.

What started out as a class assignment for the Women's School of Ministry I am taking turned into an adventure full of surprises. First, I reconnected with some old friends that Steve and I had met when we went to Japan 6 years ago. This blessed my heart very much. But, I became involveed with some new friends that are not yet "Kingdom" friends but quickly became heart friends. This took me by surprise and I came to love these new friends deeply and I have a great desire for them to give their heart to Jesus so that they are not just my heart friends but my "forever" family. We dubbed them the Joy Luck Club.

Here is Beverly Rivers and Yoshi Hanks with our "Joy Luck Club".

The other thing that took me by surprise was that even tho' Beverly (a wonderful gospel singer), Helen Shopp (my pastor's wife) and I never collaborated about what we'd be sharing, God wove it all together into a wonderful ministry that encouraged and supported what we had come hoping to do. Then when Steve arrived 2 weeks later and Beverly and Helen flew home, that ministry just continued on. Now together, as husband and wife, we met and shared with the same people. Steve gave the message at the Mino Grace Bible Church on Sunday, Oct 11. This was a clear and to the point message of the need to place your trust in Christ and Christ alone, that He is the one and only God and Savior - there is no other. There sitting in the congregation were many of our new heart friends coming to see a man who could play his harmonica and guitar at the same time and to see a puppet play. However, they also heard about the love of Christ and the offer of salvation with the encouragement to do it now while they have the time.

I might mention also that another surprise for Steve and I was that we met, for the first time, his cousin Gregg Hutton and family who have been missionaries in Kyoto Japan for 25 years. Also, we were able to spend a week with our Japanese "son" Hiro and family seeing some surprising and new and beautiful sights of Japan.

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