• matsumoto-castle
    Mission

    The Glory And Honor Of The Nations

    22 I did not see a temple in the city, because the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are its temple. 23 The city does not need the sun or the moon to shine on it, for the glory of God gives it light, and the Lamb is its lamp. 24 The nations will walk by its light, and the kings of the earth will bring their splendor into it. 25 On no day will its gates ever be shut, for there will be no night there. 26 The glory and honor of the nations will be brought into it. 27 Nothing impure will ever enter it, nor will anyone who does what is shameful or deceitful, but only those whose names are written in the Lamb’s book of…

  • Mission

    How You Can Help

    We know that many people care about the work we are planning to do in Japan and want to help, but may feel like there isn’t much they can do personally. The truth is, however – this work relies on the actions of others at least as much as it relies on the actions we ourselves take! During our last missionary journey in Japan from 2012-2017, we had so many individuals who did seemingly small things that made a huge impact. Based upon our experiences, we’ve put together a list of four specific actions you can take that can have a serious impact in this work: Pray For Us. God…

  • Mission

    Why We Believe In Japan

    When we talk to people about doing mission work in Japan, it is often met with various kinds of surprise, and we can understand that reaction. Japan is, after all, very far away. It also has a completely different language, different culture, different food, and so on. There are surely simpler places to move our family. Many people wonder what would convince us of the need to go to a place so far from home. The simple answer is: we believe in the mission and we love the people. In Ephesians 1, Paul tells us of all the incredible blessings we have through Jesus Christ. He tells us we were…

  • Mission

    Planning For The Work

    As our family returns to Japan, it’s important to reflect on the work that we plan to do upon our return. The vision may morph some once we’ve arrived, but it’s good to bring a vision with us as we go, so we know the kinds of things to be preparing for and praying about. Let me begin by saying, as I have said before, that our primary focus is on making disciples. That means we’re more concerned with spiritual growth than numerical growth. We’re not simply looking to get more people to show up on Sundays. Rather, we want to encourage a church community where all members are serving…

  • Mission,  Statistics

    Japan Missions Profile

    Being as far as it is away from the U.S., many people don’t know much about Japan, especially in terms of the state of the church there. Because of that, it may be difficult to understand why this mission field is so important to my family, as well as some of the challenges that exist on the field. Rather than write a lengthy blog post about every point, I thought it might be easier to make a simple infographic to provide a profile of the mission field in Japan. Scroll down to the bottom to see a few points of interest explained in further detail. As you can see, the…

  • Mission

    The Motivation Of Mission

    Throughout this year, I’ve been working my way through a devotional book by Tim Keller on the Psalms. One of the Psalms, Psalm 67, includes this passage: May God be gracious to us and bless us and make his face to shine upon us, Selah that your way may be known on earth, your saving power among all nations. Let the peoples praise you, O God; let all the peoples praise you! Here, the Psalmist requests blessings from God, but the request is made so that the ways of God may be known among the peoples of the earth, and that they might praise him. Of this, Keller notes, “true…

  • Mission

    Evangelism In Japan: The Obstacle Double Punch

    Anyone who has done evangelistic work in Japan for any length of time knows it is a challenging field. I’ve known of missionaries in other fields who find incredible success, baptizing hundreds over the course of a decade. Meanwhile, in Japan, making 10-20 disciples over the same amount of time could be considered a significant success. Why such a huge difference? Why is mission work in Japan so much slower than in some other places? From my experience, I would say there are two particular issues that form a kind of double punch on potential followers, making it difficult for them to commit to following Christ. Left Jab: Religious Worldview…

  • Mission,  Statistics

    Alarming Statistics And How To Respond

    It is no secret that Japan’s population has begun to decline. While the government makes serious efforts to encourage childbirth, the reality of a declining population continues to set in. I saw a map on Twitter today laying out this point in full color: #Japan population change map 2015-2018 Blue = decline Red = growth Growth hot spots in Tokyo, Nagoya, Osaka and Fukuoka pic.twitter.com/0Ei32aW11l — shootjapan (@ShootOsaka) April 13, 2019 As I reflected on this map, it got me to thinking about the percentage of Christians in Japan. The Christian population could technically rise in the coming years: assuming stable numbers among Christianity, a declining population would mean a…

  • Mission

    A Vision For Discipleship In Japan

    In Matthew 28, as Jesus met with the eleven disciples on the mountain in Galilee, he famously gave them the Great Commission: “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you.” This is the call and the command of Jesus – to make disciples. And this is the call and command we wish to follow upon our return to Japan. There are a number of benefits to focusing on discipleship within the…