So today has been super relaxing. I have prayed, baked, walked in the sun, laughed with friends, prayed and drank copious amounts of tea. Perfect really.
I’ve also been going back over some of my prayer notes about Japan from this year. It’s amazing the things that God was speaking to me about back at the House of Prayer in March that I’m really seeing here through being in Japan now. Especially some words that God really spoke to me through the book of Hosea, and the way in which He confronts idolatry and injustice throughout this prophecy. At the time I wrote pages and pages in prayer about these issues in Japan. And reading over those notes after being in this country for a month means that I have seen first hand the mixed idolatry of physical shrines and temples, and the fierce education and work ethic that also takes first place in so many lives. I’ve also seen the prevailing injustice in many of the wider laws and systems that fail to protect the vulnerable.
So today I have been praying back through my notes and journaling a lot of reflections now I’ve been here for a little bit of time to help me pray with more direction.
I’ve also brought a couple of books today that consider the wider social issues of the phenomena of hikikomori young people here in Japan. So I have some interesting reading to crack on with in these next weeks that will hopefully add some more context to some of the things I have been seeing first hand. Very briefly, already from what I have read, the writers are identifying the hidden issues in Japan, and the way in which the surface perception isn’t a real picture of the situation.
Last night we had a really interesting conversation in this house before we all headed to bed that talked about this, and the way in which culturally, many people wear a lot of masks here. And it can be hard to build genuine relationships or understand what is going on behind those masks or behind closed doors. And the prayer and conclusion that our pastor left us with, was that love, genuine and real love in the image of God, has the power to break those masks.
So right now, as I mull over and consider all these things, I would ask you again to pray for Japan, for the people, for the pastors, for this precious church here in Hamamatsu. Please just pray.
Because I really believe that God is on the move in Japan. And I believe that His love does have the power to break those masks and heal those hearts. And I think the prayers of the saints are just as vital to this as the work of the saints. The prayer and missions movements are completely inseparable.
Yep. That’s where my thoughts are at.
I also baked a treacle tart today. Turned out pretty well to say I was ad-libbing with Japanese ingredients!!
My American friends couldn’t get their head round the name ‘treacle tart’ though, and ended up calling it ‘tinkle tart’… Hahaha.
We also had a bit of a tea party in honour of the array of twinings tea that I found at the store earlier. So, thank you twinings. And thank you new friends. And thank you Jesus for it all.
I am blessed.