Oh what a Sunday we had….yesterday. So hot but following the morning meeting, 2 were water baptized in the bright sunlight. The tallest, a new Brazilian Christian, and the shortest, a Japanese elementary student. For the first time in my life I read the baptismal announcement in Portuguese which was taught to me by a Brazilian pastor(great friend) and others in the church. …”Eu te batizo….” I asked the Brazilian members of the church not to laugh at my pronunciation but they all had big smiles when I finished….not sure if they were pleased that I did it or thought my words were strange! Ha! Anyhow…I had a blast and this coming Sunday I will baptize a Brazilian father who will become a member of the church on September 1….so I will speak again in Portuguese! Tried to make a video of the baptism but my camera failed so I just have pics from a friend. Thank you again for praying and giving and caring. God is good to us. Much love to you all….let’s go on with God!
It’s a hot summer Wednesday morning here but a typhoon is passing us now and maybe the temperature will change. Anyhow, Ruth is still in Cambodia and doing well and will be back this weekend, I think. So, this past Sunday we were surprised again with cake plus pizza to celebrate 3 who had birthdays! The joy is so good. The cake and pizza was good but the joy was better. So many real smiles. This is church. Thank you again for praying for us. Two will be water baptized this coming Sunday and at least one and maybe two more on the last Sunday of this month. Wow! All the glory to God. Again, we are grateful….to you. See the attached video please. God bless you today!
It it hot here and what is it like where you are? Well, this is summer. Some have returned to their home country for a vacation and others to leave this week so I thought we would have ‘slim pickins’ today but….6 came for the first time and one new Christian will be water baptized in 2 weeks. A Brazilian brother was our speaker….his first time…and was so good. Earlier in the week, Ruth and I spent a few days in Kobe with family there and that was a good time too. Ruth leaves for a mission trip to Cambodia on Friday…will be there for about 8 days. I will keep things moving along here. Attached video was made last week. …Sweet people who are being changed by the Lord. We are so happy. And….thank you again. Oh, one Japanese lady returned, her second time….in the middle of the biggest family mess….unbelievable. She weeps when talking to other members…says she feels like she is in a big family who love here. Wow! People need the Lord. Thank you for praying. Looking forward to sharing good reports as the summer progesses! Love to all….
Yes, this note is coming to you before Sunday. Why? Ruth and I leave for Kobe on Sunday afternoon to be with Joanna, Daisuke-san, and their twins, for a few days. Joanna is expecting her third child and wants a little help and mostly encouragement, I think. Anyhow, we anticipate a great day tomorrow, Sunday, at the church. Who will come for the first time? Exciting. Yesterday, I visited a young Brazilian man in a nearby jail. After too many years of going the wrong way it seems he has turned around and following the Lord. (I have been told that jails are full of Brazilians!) Lord willing, he gets out in September or sooner. It’s a long story but I told him that I and church members are waiting with big handshakes and hugs just for him whenever he enters the church. It’s the sick who need a doctor, right? A Brazilian brother will be our speaker next week. Oh…too much to tell. But, thank you again for praying for us. Attached pics were taken recently by ladies who love to take pics! Anyhow….
Rainy season is almost over with but looks like showers for today. But, it is not really hot just very humid. Anyhow, had a great time at the church yesterday….no one came for the first time but wow, the singing was the best. We sang ‘Christ the Lord is Risen Today’ in three languages and ended with shouting, ‘He’s alive!’ I think I heard angels join us! We must have more expressions of praise in our church! Definitely! Anyhow, that was followed by a birthday party(see attached video) which I thought included a cake and 3 regular size pizzas. But….Filipino sisters brought more food and we just ate and ate. The party was for an 89 year old Christian who wanted that party and then asked for a birthday BBQ next year when she turns 90! We will do that, Lord willing. Oh, thank you so much for praying for us. Tests seem to be coming from the left and right but “If God be for us who could be against us?” Love to you all…
We have had 2 days of great events. First, Sunday included perhaps 2 who attended the church for the first time….I forgot the exact number. Our Brazilian overseer was the main speaker and he encourages everyone with his passion. This was followed by a very good deacons’ meeting…wow….those Christians love the church, they respect me, and they want more of God! It’s so good to meet with them. No one comes with a bad attitude or complaining. Pic 6 was taken 2 Sundays ago as we sang Amazing Grace. We sang in three languages and I asked groups of Christians to come forward and lead in their language. These 2 brothers sang in Japanese. The best part is not in the pic; As they sang the last verse, they threw their arm over the other’s shoulder and sang with so much passion. I thought heaven had come down. It was shouting time again. Wow! Pic 4 & 5 were at a Tokyo wedding we attended yesterday, Monday. I water baptized the groom when he lived in Hamamatsu and faithfully attended the church. And now he is married to a beautiful Christian woman. Both serve in their church near Tokyo. Following the wedding we met with Christians (5 young ladies)who were members of the church but now live in Tokyo going to school and working…pic 1, 2, 3. Ruth commented how they were once in our care and have remained lovely Christians. All glory to God! And….these are some of yours! You gave to us….we gave to them. Praise the Lord!
It is Tuesday and we are still so thankful for what the Lord did this past Sunday. Two came for the first time, a Japanese mother and daughter….and….maybe they will come back. A Brazilian couple who requested church membership returned and it looks like they will keep coming. Also, the young lady who took faith in God 2 weeks ago also came back. So, we are thankful. No pics from this past Sunday…I was too busy talking. From 3 PM a Brazilian Baptist church used our building until 9 PM. Also they water baptized a teenager. The pastor and his wife are our friends and they love their church. They had gone to a large river for other baptisms but now it is the rainy season so it is dangerous to get into the river. They used our baptismal pool. So good. Well, more rain today but something good is happening in the church so we can rejoice. Thank you again for praying…for sharing…for remembering.
It’s early Tuesday morning here but I started this note to you yesterday. Anyhow, had a great Sunday with BBQ even though it rained. Four came for the first time and one of those took faith in God at the end of the meeting. Tears flowing. So good. Another 3 arrived at the end so we had 7 for the BBQ who we had never met in the past. Thank you so much for praying for us. I spoke on Romans 7;1-6…we are dead to the Law. That led to the story in John 8 about the woman caught in adultery and deserving of death because of the law. I think I know what Jesus wrote on the ground with His finger; Law…Guilty…Penalty……….Calvary….No Penalty. We ended with a shout of joy. Love you all so much. You are good to us. God is good to us.
It is a beautiful Tuesday afternoon but yours truly has had a serious right eye infection since Sunday morning. You would not recognize me today but…I shall recover. I have had a bad cold for more than three weeks and it finally went into my eye….well….enough of that report. Anyhow, Sunday was a great day with a young lady attending church for the first time. She found us on the Internet. Prayed for several others who have family problems. I returned to speak about Daniel…last week was about his 3 friends…and what it means to ‘serve the Lord’. The king knew Daniel was serving the Lord because of Daniel’s daily devotions. The Brazilian man who become a Christian two weeks is still going on with God….so attentive to every message. Wow! thank you again for praying for us. I must slow down a little this week so I can see out of my right eye…..it will happen soon. You are all special to us. Oh, 2 songs by a Nigerian singer has been such a blessing to the church. One we have in Japanese and Portuguese. See attached links. Love you….
It has been a beautiful Tuesday. And we are still rejoicing at what the Lord did this past Sunday. A young couple from Brazil came for the first time and another single mom has requested church membership. Plus, we had a Filipino Birthday Party. Yes, delicious Filipino food and of course a big Costco Cake…see attached video. It looks like we are going to set another record for birthday parties this year. Well, a Japanese husband who has been coming to the church and the parties give me the biggest handshake on Sunday. He is not a Christian yet but I think he is going to be another one soon. I think I preached the greatest fear filled sermon this past Sunday….Three Hebrew men in the burning furnace. (Daniel 3) The main point; “Why can’t we stop bowing down and start standing up? The Lord of the fire is waiting to walk with us in it!” Hope all the members return next Sunday! Ha! Again, thank you for caring and sharing! You are all special to us!