I hope that this update finds each and every one of you well. Things here in Japan have been rather crazy lately. It seems as if there have been many earthquakes recently. I also hear that you guys in Oklahoma had one tonight. Don't be too afraid! They aren't all that bad. Well I suppose I will get into an update for you guys to read.
The past two Sundays have been pretty good overall. The attendance at church has maintained pretty steady with about 15 people every Sunday for worship. Last Sunday was extra special however. One of the ladies that I have started to study with came to church last Sunday. It was so exciting to see her come to a service so soon. Her name is Masako san! I will try to post a picture of her soon. Also, after church last Sunday, almost everyone in the congregation drove about an hour away to go eat lunch at a Mexican restaurant together. It felt good to finally get a taste of my favorite food.
At the Mexican Restaurant
On Monday, the 24th, we went to Toru's parent house to have a Tomobe Church Home Bible Study. Toru's parents generally take off on Monday's because they make good money on Saturday and Sunday with their sushi restaurant they own. Toru's mom is a Christian however, Toru's dad is not. At the end of the study, Toru's father said that he liked the study. That was a very encouraging moment.
My Tuesday's generally consist of having two English Bible studies with people who are from Marlin and Jeanne's. One of the readers I have told you I have had the studies with is known as Kawasaki san. After our study this week, I learned that Kawasaki san believes in the miracles of Jesus and all the things Jesus did, he is just not sur what is holding him back from being a Christian is the vibe that I got from him. He never fully opened up and said. The other woman I am working with doesn't seem all that interested in the Bible right now, but English. Hopefully with time she will see how great it would be and may become more interested.
On Wednesdays, I have normally gone to Ibaraki Christian University for Bible studies. While I still went to the college the past two weeks, it was hard to do any Bible studies because of the school hosting a festival this week. The week before, everyone was busy trying to prepare for the school festival. However, the Pac Rim students from Oklahoma Christian left this week and left me with 30 different English Bible Studies to continue. It is likely many of the students are not interested in the Bible portion, but the English portion. However, that is 30 more great opportunities right. I will start next week to try and revise a schedule to where I can work with these 30 students along with the 8-10 I am already working with.
At the school festival with a Pac Rim student (Jose Cruz) who is helping sell tacos with English majors
The last two Thursdays have been also interesting. This past Thursday was a holiday so I spent time with the young people from Tomobe Church having lunch and helping one of them who is an American get a cell phone. The Thursday before consisted of my elementary class and English class with Toru. While there is only about a strong group of four people in the young people group now, it has been an encouragement and helped everyone grow stronger I think spiritually and is great for everyone.
I am not sure if I have ever posted a picture of Toru but here is Toru and I before eating lunch at the church for a potluck.
In fact, a couple of Fridays ago, the young people group held our third activity together and went to sing Kareoke together. All together we had five people show up. While it was a drop from the past couple of events will still had a great time. Also, this past Friday I started a new English class with a new person. During the Bible portion of our study, he openly told me that he was tired of not knowing what the purpose of life was. I told him that if he stuck with me, we would be able to answer that very shortly. I am hoping that I can reach to this man in a way that he sees that there is a purpose in his life that he has been given.
Kareoke with Tomobe Church young people
Generally, I like to do nothing on Saturday and just relax because that is the only day I really have to do absolutely nothing most of the time. The past two Saturdays have been busy however. Last Saturday, I went with Omika Church students to go to a restaurant where you catch your own fish in a little pond and then when you have enough fish for everyone you take it to the restaurant up the hill and they cook it for you and you eat it fresh within minutes at the restaurant on the hill. It was a pretty awesome experience. Today, I also with Omika Church went to an orphanage. We ended up putting sweet potatoes underneath a fire and cooking them with the kids. It was also a great time to show these kids the love of Jesus because they do not have parents who are there to show it to them.
Fishing Trip with Omika Church Students
Listening to a Story at the Orphanage
Well that is about all I have. Once again I know it is a lot of information but I hope that it is helpful to each and every one of you to know what I am doing. If you would like to know anything else, please don't hesitate to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any more questions. Please continue to pray for the items below. Thanks to all of you for keeping up with me and praying for me in this journey.