Yesterday was Daniel’s first day off from work, after over 5 years of God faithfully providing for our family and for our missionary preparation through his former job. When he applied for the job, he prayed, “Lord, I don’t see this as a perfect fit for me, but if you see fit to use it for preparing us to move to Japan, please allow me to have this job.” Daniel even answered the question in the interview, “Where do you see yourself in 5 years?” with “Probably moving to Japan as a missionary.”
So, appreciating how far God has brought us, and wishing to not take a step forward without acknowledging and appreciating His grace, we took a day off from “working” on missionary things. We made no donation requests, wrote no letters, planned no trips, and didn’t even do our taxes which we personally consider to be way past due. We have so much to do, but we felt God calling us to just be still and dedicate the day to Him through gratitude, prayer, and fasting.
We knew we had a new journey unfurling ahead of us, that this was likely the first day of a a path that would lead us to service in Japan, and just like Ezra called those with Him to pray and fast and ask for God’s protection and providence on the first day of their journey back to Jerusalem, we felt the strong need to pray and fast and prepare our hearts for what lies ahead. [Ezra 8:21-23] We don’t want to go anywhere unless God goes before us. We don’t want to do anything in our own strength, because we know that all fruit and blessing and answered prayers are from Him.
The kids joined in too, and this became a beautiful, special day for our whole family. Some of our prayers were spoken, some were silent, some were drawn on paper. We got to hear from deep inside our kids’ hearts about how they really feel about moving across the globe— what they are excited about and what they are scared of. Daniel and I enjoyed taking turns praying for each other in preparation for a task that we have seen tear other marriages apart.
Not only did God draw us closer to Himself, but in doing so, He brought us closer together as a family. We know we had many of you joining with us in prayer as well, and we have felt the presence of God ease our fears, and fill us with peace, joy, and hope. Thank you, all!