~~Another delightful update from my favorite missionary carpenter~~
Its Sunday evening. We took the day off. This morning I walked down the road through a quaint little village along a river and then back through a farming area.It was very quiet, as if even here they have the custom of shutting down on Sunday.
Later, a couple from the Billy Graham evangelistic association came to the base and led us in worship and spoke about how our very identity changes when we enter into a relationship with Jesus Christ. Especially, we are rescued from living as orphans abused by the enemy, into adoption by God Himself and given the names of Son and Daughter.
You would all like/ love Japan and the Japanese people. Unlike common U.S. perception, there is a lot of open space, mountains, trees and rivers. The cities are no more crowded than ours, they are certainly cleaner and safer, and everything you need is readily available.
Even McDonald's where I had a spicy Korean Barbeque Burger tonite. McDonalds even has a parking lot for bikes
because so many people ride them since gas is $8 per gallon and cars are not cheap since the government says you have to get rid of your old car once it is 5-10 years old. Funny thing about the bikes is that even though they are so technologically advanced in other areas, all their bikes are your basic one speed with the basket on the front model.
This afternoon we visited a small church that has recently been established in the neighborhood where we are doing home repairs. It is in a donated apartment of about 500 square feet. We sang some hymns in both Japanese and English and the Pastor spoke on casting our cares and anxieties on Jesus whom we can trust as being present and as being more capable than ourselves.
As an illustration he referred to someone he knew who was still living in a shelter and chose to commit suicide rather than face the prospect of rebuilding their life. (suicide is one of the main causes of death here, even prior to the earthquake and tsunami). This is certainly a relevant message for these traumatized people who are far from recovered, as winter is closing in.
As the Pastor was speaking, a small elderly man sitting in front of me broke down in tears. I found out afterward that just this week his home was taken down because it was too damaged to repair. (no such thing as homeowners insurance here). Others in attendance included two families who have had their homes repaired by Samaritan's Purse volunteers. Pray that the love they are receiving through the home repairs will ultimately lead them to the source of love, Jesus Christ.
If you want to find where our team is doing home rebuilds, go to Map Quest and type in Ishinomaki, Japan. It is a small fishing community on the North East coast, a bit North of Sendai and Fukashima.
If you want to see more pictures than I can attach check out: www.somissions.com
This blogger is Billy Jackson and he is a very energetic 20 something member of our team here.
I am sure the next 6-days of work will fly by. I will try to write to you another time before leaving on Sunday for Tokyo and flying to Seattle on Monday.
Please continue to pray for the people of Japan. In spite of their outward appearance of success, they have a spiritual bankruptcy. Sure you could say that Bhudda seems to be working for them and if it works for them then just leave them alone. But in the spiritual realm, and it does exist, there are only two forces: Satan and God. Left without God's protection, we are no match for Satan. He will do whatever it takes to keep us from God, even set us up with financial prosperity. These people, like most Americans, lack a true awareness of their spiritual dilema and what can be done about it. May their spiritual eyes be opened, wide.