Dear Family and Friends,
Greetings from Edmonton, Alberta which is still trying to decide whether it is spring or winter! I experienced snow on my first long distance trip to visit a church. Those who know me well know that winter driving conditions are one of my worst fears. Pastor Ed Lehman at Century Meadows Baptist in Camrose had the perfect message for me when he challenged the congregation about any fears we have and to let them be surrendered to Jesus. Another friend encouraged me by saying, “Think of Jesus sitting in the passenger seat next to you as you drive”. So, I have been encouraged and I am learning to trust in Jesus as I start this Home Assignment journey for one year!
One of the many highlights since coming back to Canada is to spend time with my parents. I had prayed before coming back that I would be able to have Scripture reading time with them every morning. They agreed reluctantly, but I praise God that we are doing so! My parents are not believers, so it is very important for me that they know who I am passionate about and for them to receive the Good News of Jesus. We only spend about 10 minutes together doing this…but they are precious! Please pray with me that the Word of God will penetrate their hearts with truth and love.
Let me back up and share about the exciting things that happened in Japan before I came back to Canada. The most exciting news is celebrating the baptism of Miss Yuri Saito! She got baptized on March 30th. Perhaps because we share the same name, we became quite close and I had the priv-ilege of baptizing her! In her testimony she shared that throughout her life she has seen the hand of God in the ups and downs of her life experience. It was encouraging to see her take this step of com-mitment because at one point she had given up and left the church. However, she came back and the Holy Spirit touched her heart. Please continue to pray for her as she learns to take baby steps of faith and that her faith would have a strong foundation.
Ladies’ Lunch and Live Gospel Café events are done on a quarterly basis. Both of these events were well attended with new people coming. It is a good way for people to come to the church in a non-threatening way. The ladies had a chance to think about their life journey as Shan Reed gave a devotional message on “Going for the Gold!” which was timely after the Winter Olympics had just ended. The “Men of Excellence” gospel choir group came to sing at the Live Gospel Café event and they did a great job of sharing the good news of Jesus through their music. A few people who came out were interested in coming to other classes that the church provides. We are hoping they will come.
KOMYO CHURCH SHINING THEIR LIGHT IN THE COMMUNITY:
It is exciting to see the church members have a desire to make an impact in their community. Last Christmas, the Komyo church went to visit the nearby local seniors’ home to encourage the residents. Since then several of the church members have decided on their own to personally volunteer to serve coffee or just talk with them. Soon after I left for home assignment, the church also went as a group to help teach and make origami flowers. Please pray that the church members would continue to serve with joy and that their joy in Jesus would not only spread to the seniors but to all whom they are in contact with.
As I travel to various places and continue to share about Japan, please pray for safety and God-honoring fellowship. I look forward to meeting many of you in person this year.
May 18-23 Debrief and Renewal in CO
May 23-26 South Canyon Community in Rapid City, SD
May 29 Visit to Home Office in CAMay 26-28 Sioux Falls, SD
May 29-31 Sacramento
June 1- Glory to God in Edmonton, AB
June 4- Rabbit Hill WMF in Edmonton, AB
June 8- Emmanuel Baptist in Valleyview, AB
June 22-TriCommunity in Beiseker, AB
June 29-Hawkwood Baptist in Calgary, AB
July 13- not confirmed yet
July 20-not confirmed yet
July 27- Aug 2 –CJM Sunnyside Family Camp
Aug 3- Zion Baptist Church in Drumheller, AB
Aug 10-Pavilion of Hope in Calgary, AB
Aug 24-Zion Baptist Community in Edmonton, AB
With much appreciation for your continued support and prayers!