One of the things that struck us most when we went to our first training with Christar two years ago, was the focus on prayer. Repeatedly during the training we would be told, “Here is everything we know about this unreached people group— the missionaries there, the spiritual and physical needs of the people, how we have seen God move, and things we are thankful for. Now, go pray about this in small teams for a while. — OK, Here’s another UPG…” We were impacted not merely by the statement that prayer is important, but the active and continual praying, that was practically part of the atmosphere, reaffirmed that prayer truly is a vital part of ministry.
A few months ago, a lady stopped me in the hallway at a church and offered to pray over me. I was moved to tears by her requesting that God would protect our family and strengthen our hearts and provide for our way to Japan. She kept telling me to remember what God said to Joshua, to be brave and not to be afraid, but to remember God goes before us. Little did she know that I had needed this prayer and that encouragement so much!
Last Sunday, Daniel and I went to an evening service at another church, and we were delightfully surprised that it was prayer night. We have seen God work so mightily when we get on our knees for those hours, altogether interceding for one another and asking God’s will to be done on Earth as it is in Heaven. So we were very happy to join with our brothers and sisters there and lift each other up to the Lord.
Last night, I had a wonderful conversation with a sister in Christ. I had felt God leading me to ask her for help in preparing for teaching in Japan. She was full of wisdom, practical ideas, and encouragement. I’m still so thankful for the moment. At the end of the conversation, she prayed for me and for our family, for God to protect us and to provide what we need to go to Japan. I’m not looking forward to the hours of driving it will take to reach our next training. I’m not thrilled that the buyers for our house backed out of the contract. But I was greatly refreshed and my faith was strengthened by this lady’s prayer over me amidst these situations.
I find that when I try to be strong on my own, I am incapable. But your prayers, Friends, God provides strength through them. Which reminds me of what a great family I have in Christ, and that there is absolutely no reason to try to do anything solo. I cannot express perfectly just how big a deal it is that you all are praying for us. But this post is my attempt.
For those of you on our prayer team, for my close friends that I can text or call when I need immediate prayer, for those of you who are brave and spontaneous and stop us to pray over us, for the congregations and Sunday schools who have been lifting us up to the Lord, THANK YOU!
Your faithfulness in prayer is powerfully affecting our lives and path to ministry in Japan. From the baby finally beginning to sleep through the night, to my health being restored, to our faith not shrinking when things are difficult—it is all to the praise of our wonderful Father God and we know it is because you are praying to Him on our behalf. Thank you so much! We could not do this without you, it is a task bigger than ourselves, and we are thankful to have you, our family in Christ, supporting us in prayer. Our God is great, and this family of faith He has brought us into is beautiful!