Our primary objective is not just to live in Japan but to start a church. While settling back into the country, we plan to be concurrently promoting the church plant and spreading the gospel so we can officially launch the church at the beginning of December. We hope this allows us ample time to get the word out about the new church.
The plot twist for us will be the ongoing COVID situation in Japan. Aichi prefecture (the state that Nagoya is in) is currently in a state of emergency. Navigating these times where large gatherings are frowned upon will be a challenge. However, in the middle of every obstacle is an opportunity. We know that our God is bigger than any pandemic that we might face. Many variables lie ahead in the days and weeks to come. But we have the unchanging gospel and the unwavering promises of God.
Some may ask why we go during unfavorable circumstances. While the situation is less-than-ideal, we have to remember that the people in Japan are in even more unfavorable circumstances apart from the glorious gospel of Jesus Christ. Most of them have not heard of the unshakable hope we find in the pages of Scripture.
The incarnation was an obstacle. The cross was an obstacle. But our Lord did not falter at these obstacles. While He may have preferred not to go through them, His prayer was “not my will, but thine.” What is God’s will? He wants all to come to repentance (2 Peter 3:9)!
We are incredibly blessed to be able to work in a first-world country like Japan. We are not building straw huts or needing airplanes to deliver medical supplies. But we do face a spiritual foe. The Word says, “we wrestle not against flesh and blood.” The enemy has held Japan in his clutches through the darkness of Buddhism and Shintoism. We ask that you pray for us as we embark on this next term. But even more, pray with us that the Lord of the harvest will send more laborers into His harvest in Japan.