Japan has always been a hard ground. A missionaries’ “graveyard,” so much so that many Churches wisely chose to channel their finite resources to softer harvest grounds in other parts of the world.
The Clarion Call
As one survey the landscape of a typical Japanese city, one is struck by the tired looking facade of the many buildings, a sad reflection of a once proud and dominant Asian economic giant, that has lived a miserable economic existence the past two decades. A nation that by and large worship mammon fervently in the heydays of the 1980s, conquering the world with its once mighty Japanese Yen, now a pale shadow of her glorious past.
In the days of old, the heralds blew their medieval trumpets, to summon the knights to an audience with the king. Thundering cacophony might not be the way of our Lord, but when His Spirit speaks to one’s being, soft and subtle it might be, the clarity of His will leaves no room for any doubt.
Brick By Brick
And indeed, back in 2012, the Spirit of God impressed upon the hearts of several men to look at Japan beyond the facade. As He softens even once hardened hearts, the call to go to Japan to prepare the infrastructure was clear. God wants to rebuild the smitten and humbled nation of Japan, brick by brick, His way.
In 2013 men from different path made their foray into Nippon land. Interestingly, May 2013 was the point that the sick man of Asia was about to kneel over, if not for the bold or for some desperate measures now termed “Abenomics.”
Connecting The Dots
No man is an island. And indeed, God brought together a community of faithful men, women and children in His service. Little did they know then that God has stirred the hearts of other good men and women from the little Red Dot nation, to minister to Japan.
One year later, by His prescience, the lines that God has drawn are much clearer as He brought most of us together. God the Master assembles a small but determined group of faithful servants, working in unity of Spirit to move forward on this hard land.
God’s Perfect Timing
At the onset of answering His call, the team envisioned the hope of owning a building. Today, God has provided two adjoining buildings with a total land area of 1,376 sq meter. God enlarges our vision to establish in Fukuoka city a Friendship House, a community place where people can be touched by the Gospel and the love of God.
The Fukuoka Friendship House will be a meeting place with café, language schools and music studios for the youth. In God’s goodness the Friendship House will evolve into a social enterprise, integrating with local communities to serve their needs.
More Than A Physical Shelter
Most importantly the Friendship House will be used as a place of worship and the preaching of the gospel. It is also a place for the equipping of Christians, counseling for families and training for youth development.
And indeed even as we build this oasis of agape love in Fukuoka, may we always ground ourselves and the community in prayers, for the prayers of the faithful moves the hand of God. May this “drop of water” that is us, be used by our Lord to magnify forth like ripples in a once stagnant pool, to bring the local community to His kingdom.