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Dear Family and Friends,
Happy New Year! I hope you all enjoyed a joyful celebration of Jesus’ birth and the peace of Christ is filling your hearts as each day of this new year progresses. Thank you for your prayers, emails, Christmas cards and letters of encouragement.
I am excited to share some of the ways God is at work.
Komyo Christian Church
The Christmas season provided many opportunities for us to share the story of Jesus’ birth. One of our activities was a ladies’ gathering at which one of our English students taught a craft and we enjoyed lunch together. In my last newsletter, I had asked you to pray for our English students. It was exciting that several of them attended this event. We enjoyed creating and fellowshipping together. Thank you for your prayers! Please continue to pray.
When I first moved to Osaka, before we had even started Komyo Church, I met a lady in a restaurant who asked me to teach English to the staff at her beauty salon, which included her daughter. For about two years I taught them English, and then, for various reasons, the class ended. Suddenly, on a Sunday afternoon in January, the daughter and her family came to the church. After talking for a few minutes, they decided to attend the bilingual worship service that day. They came back the following week with a friend! What a great reminder that God is at work in ways we cannot see or imagine.
Several of Komyo Church’s members and regular attendees have not been able to join us for worship services and events recently because of sickness, injuries, or recovering from surgery. We miss worshiping and fellowshipping with these brothers and sisters. Please pray for health and healing for bodies and minds.
Anointed Gospel Choir
After the last AGC rehearsal of 2018, I hosted our annual potluck party. Some years Christmas has been so busy for me that we have a new year’s party instead! There are some ladies who have come every time, some have come just once, some come when their schedules allow, and there are some ladies who came for the first time last year. The ladies have learned the joy of potluck meals – and how much food to bring. We always enjoy the time of talking and laughing together, learning new things about each other and reminiscing about the past year as well as years gone by. As I have said before, I am grateful that God led me to this group. He is at work in our midst!
Our winter gathering was held at a church in Nagoya, and the pastor of the church shared the message for the day from Jeremiah 29:11-12. In our small group time we discussed the message and were given questions to discuss our futures as well. My small group included the youngest students who weren’t quite sure what they were doing that evening, let alone in the future. However, they asked the other leader and me some good questions about how we had made some of our major life decisions. As a committee, we had planned to go to a local park for lunch, singing, and free time, so we were very thankful that it was a warm, sunny day. We were all challenged by the message and encouraged by the fellowship.
Thank you for continuing to partner with me as we shine the light of Jesus around the corner and around the world. As we now look toward spring and the resurrection celebration, may hope fill your hearts as you continue to seek and serve our Savior where He has placed you.
Soli Deo Gloria,
Shan in Japan