Hitachi is the place our team leader, Judith, spent seven of her ten years as a missionary in Japan. In distance and accessibility, it is to Tokyo what Oakville is to Toronto. It is also home to faithful missionaries and native pastors who use various means to reach the people of Hitachi with the gospel of Jesus Christ.
For example, one couple runs a school to teach English. Their doors have been open for 20 years, and they have seen many come to faith in Jesus through the relationships built over time. Only two weeks before our arrival, this same family opened a cafe as another avenue to build relationships with the people of Hitachi and point them to Christ.
We took a train over to neighbouring Mito and met a pastor and staff who desire to make disciples who make disciples, planting seeds for future generations of Christians in Japan. Their journey is not easy, but in their weakness He is so strong!
We sat in the house one missionary couple in their 70’s built 40 years ago and heard of God’s faithfulness. We attended church with brothers and sisters simultaneously singing hymns in three different languages. We chatted with first-year university students so they could practice their English. And we heard the story of a missionary daughter who started her first day of Grade 3 after completing her second round of chemo.
And in all of this, we prayed. We prayed that the years of perseverance would lead to dependence, not weariness. We prayed for unity among churches and denominations. We prayed for freedom and salvation and miraculous healing. And we continue to pray as we leave Hitachi and head north to Ishinomaki, where the tsunami of 2011 did its worst.
Please, continue to pray with us from wherever you are. Pray that the Lord would send the workers because the harvest is plenty!
Luke 10:2 – And he said to them, “The harvest is plentiful, but the labourers are few. Therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out labourers into his harvest.