Thank you for keeping in touch and being a part of our journey as we seek to join in God’s work being done in Japan! We’ve had a pretty busy summer and have been seeing God working in so many ways.
In May we moved to Minneapolis, where Lauren accepted a three month nursing position at a children’s hospital. The move has afforded us some unique opportunities. It has given us a chance to experience city living — more traffic, close neighbors, and the ability to actually walk places, to name a few. We’ve appreciated living in an area with a great deal of cultural diversity. In addition, we’ve been able to start saving for outgoing moving costs to Japan. Lastly, the opportunity to explore a new place has been quite fun.
We’ve found a great church to attend while we’re here — Rose Hill Alliance Church. We’ve all made some new friends, the kids were able to attend VBS, and we’ve enjoyed worshiping with them on Sundays.
Living in the midwest has also given us the chance to spend a little extra time with Jonathan’s parents, sister and brother-in-law who only live about four hours away. Two Sunday’s ago we were able to attend Alliance Bible Church in Mequon, Wisconsin — the church we both attended in our youth, and where we met in high school. It was wonderful to reconnect with people we hadn’t seen in almost twenty years!
Through our missions agency, the C&MA’s Marketplace Ministries, God generously provided the opportunity for us to attend a two-week cross-cultural missions training program in Cambridge, ON, a short distance from Toronto. In June, we joined over twenty other adults and almost twenty children in instruction learning spiritual, personal, interpersonal and cultural aspects of the cross-cultural missionary experience. What does that mean? We talked about spiritual formation and spiritual health, physical health, stages of transition, stages of culture shock, grief, loss, saying goodbye, worldviews, conflict resolution, and more. The boys also had a program covering the same topics but in age appropriate contexts.
By the end of the two weeks we felt we had been given a great toolset to be used as we transition through the coming years. We were also encouraged and humbled by our classmates; most of them were within weeks of departing to their different areas of the world. Fellowshipping with others who were going through similar experiences offered an essential reminder of our need to depend on God, and rest in His plan for the coming year.
This was the boys’ first time out of the country, and we all enjoyed the opportunity to see a glimpse of Ontario together. We were able to stop briefly at Niagara Falls, take the subway to downtown Toronto to visit a waterfront festival and just experience the unique cultural aspects of our neighbors to the north.
- A successful trip to Toronto for cross-cultural missions training.
- The amazing people God has been placing in our lives for encouragement and development.
- Opportunities to share our story with others.
We are so grateful for those that are praying for us. We would also like to pray for you! Please email us if there is something you’d like us to pray for — firstname.lastname@example.org. If you would pray with us:
- Pray for those in Japan who have suffered due to devastating flooding, which took the lives of over 200 people; for those who suffered from an extreme heatwave that left 80 dead and tens of thousands in hospitals; and now those impacted by tropical storm Jongdari.
- Pray for the international workers, that they would receive a fresh reminder of God’s love and faithfulness as they share the Gospel in Japan.
- Pray with us as we begin developing prayer and financial partnerships that will allow us to move and share the Gospel in Tokyo.