"The plans of the heart belong to man, but the answer of the tongue is from the Lord."
Ever since we have been in Japan, it has always amazed us how, in hindsight, we can see the ways God has prepared us for each “next step” He takes us in. It’s also been very insightful for us to see that often what we think is God’s plan can be easily modified with each revelation He gives us.
If you have been following our adventures in our newsletters, something we have said many times before is how God has impressed upon our hearts that we are not here to bring our “Cultural Christianity” to Japan, but to simply lead the people of Japan to Jesus. The importance of this cannot be emphasized enough as we continue in our missionary call to Japan.
That said, we want to share with you what we believe to be the next steps in God’s leading as we consider and explore the possibility of starting a new ministry in Sasebo. As we mentioned in our last newsletter, the mayor of Sasebo has made clear his goal to make Sasebo a bi-lingual city of English and Japanese.
Doug and Rose Martin, the couple with whom we have been in contact there in Sasebo, have been very involved with not only the mission to teach English, but also in various services to help with needs in the community. The Martin’s come from a strong “Calvary Chapel” background and share our vision of friendship evangelism and discipleship.
As Rose is the president of a local community service group, we have been invited to an “English Expo” on Saturday, March 13th. We plan to drive down on Friday, March 12th, and join Doug and Rose for their monthly community group meeting Friday evening. We will then have the opportunity to participate in the expo on Saturday, and to meet people in the community as well as the mayor. It seems God is blessing us with the perfect people to help us get connected in the area.
Another blessing is that the Covid-19 restrictions have been lifted enough for us to be able to stay at the Martin’s home during our weekend visit. God is good!
More about Sasebo:
As we are learning about Sasebo ourselves, we’d like to share some quick and interesting facts about Sasebo (from the web):
Sasebo is a core city located in Nagasaki Prefecture, Japan. Sasebo City was founded on April 1, 1902. The city which had 206,000 inhabitants in 1945 suffered severe damage by bombing on June 29, 1945 during World War II and was destroyed by 48%. Sasebo was one of the original 17 targets selected for the dropping of the atomic bomb.
After the end of the war, part of the base facilities were taken over by the United States Navy, forming U.S. Fleet Activities Sasebo. Some parts of the base are shared with the Japan Self-Defense Forces…
The Port of Sasebo has been the sister port of the Port of San Diego for almost 40 years. Originally signed in August 1982, the sister port agreement allows both ports to collaborate and encourage cross-promotion of business and cultural opportunities.
Similar to the Port of San Diego, the Port of Sasebo has a pronounced military presence, natural deepwater harbors, and resort areas. Each area is also home to large cruise, shipbuilding, and fishing industries.
More to come…
We really appreciate your prayers as we take the next steps forward.
- That we would meet key people during the expo who can connect us with English teaching opportunities.
- To be able to make contacts with people for ministry/discipleship opportunities.
- To see possible “tent making” opportunities.
- To search out and find housing and ministry location possibilities.
- For wisdom and discernment as we look to God for guidance and direction.
- For safe traveling to Sasebo during the 4 and a half hour trip each way.