As you gather with family and friends to celebrate the Light of the world coming to bring us hope and salvation, Jesus, the Son of God, can you imagine not even considering the 25th of December a Holiday? What if Christmas passed by with no meaning and everyone just woke up normally to go to school or work? Can you imagine a place with no one going to church on a Sunday morning? A place where its inhabitants have never touched a Bible, nor even seen one before? A place where people cannot fathom the meaning of sin and salvation, Heaven and hell? Such is the reality of most of Japan today.
In the 16th century, brave Portuguese missionaries gave their lives to share the Message they carried and many of those who believed it were willing to give their lives for it. In the face of a great persecution that took place in that era, they stood strong and were willing to pay the price for their faith with their own blood. In Nagasaki stands a monument called “The Twenty-Six Martyrs”. It is dedicated to 26 men who were forced to walk 500 miles in the snow from Kyoto, to all be crucified in front of the masses in Nagasaki.
Nearly 500 years later, God called us to this same region. “Why me? Why now?” We would ask, with mixed sentiments of faith and excitement in our hearts. After three years of prayer and waiting, we decided to step out. Now we are coming to a close of our time commitment in Tokyo and are organizing ourselves and calling all servants of the Lord to join us in this venture to share the Good News in the Nagasaki area. To a town with no church…yet!
It is true that our mission now is nothing compared to those of 500 years ago. Currently, we do not face the threat of losing our heads, but we know in the spiritual world, the battle is still great.
No mission was ever accomplished alone or with no risk taking. But it is also exciting! That’s the nature of the Kingdom. We get His direction, step out in faith and see what He will do! But in order to do that, it will always cost us something (or everything!). Thankfully the reward is guaranteed and backed up by the King of kings Himself.
We need people committed to intercession. We need teams coming. We need finances to get there.
Would you be willing to “risk” even $10 per month for this mission to happen? A Happy Meal or two, or a pizza, per month?
Of course, in a country as expensive as Japan, we need so much more than that to provide a “happy meal” for our family, so if God has blessed you in such a manner that you are able to commit to $50, $100, $200 or more, please do so! All through the years we have seen His hand and can assure you that His word is true: “Now he who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will also supply and increase your store of seed and will enlarge the harvest of your righteousness. You will be enriched in every way so that you can be generous on every occasion, and through us your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God.” (2 Cor. 9:10,11) This only proves what a friend taught us once: “We can never outgive God, but it is fun to try!”
By no means do we want to be pushy, but we have no reason to be shy about what God’s Word says and the privilege and opportunity we all have to be part of His Grander work around the world and experience His blessings in a supernatural way. We can tell you countless stories for sure!
We served over seven years in Brazil and had the opportunity to become acquainted with many pastors in the Southern region. They all recognize the vital impact that American and European missionaries had on Brazil many decades ago. Today, Christianity is strong and influential in the country, as you may have seen in the news lately. Today, Brazil has become a sending nation, that has used its friendly and joyful culture, as well as their love for soccer, to enter into countries banned to other nations – so that Christ may be known.
Today, family ministry is a topic being that is being better developed in the Brazilian Christian world. There is still a long road to go, but we are grateful for your investment in our lives and the opportunity we had to pioneer a family ministry in Brazil together, at a time when it was hardly being spoken of in the churches. By the way, we continue to work at it through ministry partners, our book there, and online resources.
As we write this letter, we remember what Mr. Iverson said as he spoke at a Seminar here, “I have been in Japan for over 30 years and I never saw God calling so many missionaries to this nation as now. I truly believe He is getting ready for something big!”
Investing in the Kingdom can have eternal and global proportions!
We are excited to think of what He wants to do in Japan and do not want to miss out on the opportunity of being part of it. Would you come with us?
“…So is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it…” Isaías 55:11
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