Shimonoseki Update – Japan #12

This is one of a series of emails I sent while preparing and living overseas in Japan, from April 2008 to April 2009. They are mostly for my own benefit, but also for anyone who may care to read them. Enjoy 🙂

Konnichiwa!

Hey everybody from a beautiful Japanese Wednesday morning!  The weather has been great lately!  I’m so glad that it is warming up and there are so many things going on outside and around town.  It’s so pretty here!  Starting in the middle of June (after my birthday, thank goodness) we will enter into the rainy season, which will last for a good month and a half.  Yippee!  It will rain pretty much nonstop the whole time.  My classes go through the middle of July, but after that I won’t have any classes until September.  Samantha will be taking off for the States at the end of July and then I will hang out by myself for a month or so until Washeila can come over from England.  She will be the new teacher/missionary, and most likely living in the Center with me.  She is an older woman, saved out of Islam, and she works with Pioneers.  She will be here to start the new term of classes. 

I am so sorry that I haven’t updated until just now.  I usually do it Sunday evenings/Monday mornings…but I had a very full Sunday, and then I couldn’t access my email account all day Monday.  The past week and a half have been really fun.  I have a new class on Tuesday mornings, that I mentioned in the last update.  They are a group of 5 women, all housewives.  They are very cultured and elegant in a lot of ways, but they are a lot of fun.  They have a great relationship with each other and we have hit it off really well so far!  Last week, we read in the Children’s Bible the story of Samuel being called.  We had some great discussion of how we would feel if God spoke to us in our sleep, and also what we would do if our child came to us in the middle of the night thinking we were calling them.  They all agreed that they would do just like Eli and say, “It wasn’t me…go back to bed!”  One even said she’d probably lock her bedroom door.  Hah!  This week we discussed our requirements for picking a king, and then we read about Saul becoming king of Israel.  Next week, we’ll move on to David being anointed as king, and why he is a better candidate than Saul was.  They thought it was so weird that Saul would be chosen just because of his height and that he was so cowardly that he hid himself from the people.  I really hope that through these engaging stories, their hearts will be opened to the truly engaging story of the God who loves them.

After the morning class, I’ve been going out to lunch with H, one of Samantha’s students.  Samantha has to run after class to Kawanaka (the church site) for another class right in the afternoon, so I’ve taken to chatting with H after class is over.  She really loves the Center and all of us who work here.  She knows that we have so much love for her, and she comes regularly to International Cafe, even bringing friends and her clients (she’s an aromatherapy masseuse).  Pray for her that she would realize that it’s more than just the love in our hearts that she feels when she is with us.  She has a yearning, and consistently searches and is learning, but her heart has not yet completely opened to Jesus.

My relationship with the Quixote people has been growing as well.  Several people from the church, too, have been going to have lunch and dinner there.  It is wonderful to see them pick up this restaurant and take it as their own ministry as well.  Several people have already set up days to go and eat with me (which is either great for me or I might start gaining back any weight I’ve lost).  Last week I went in and only Yoshio and Satsuki were there again, and Satsuki said that she considers me a dear friend.  It was very sweet to hear and I pray that sometime soon we could call each other dear sisters and not just friends. 

This past weekend was International Cafe which went very, very well.  We discussed the meaning of life, and watched a clip from Planet of the Apes (the old one…without Marky Mark, alas).  I will put a link to some pictures at the bottom of the email, and you can see the very special guest we had at the dinner party.  He couldn’t stay long, but he caused quite a commotion as he came to eat with us.  🙂  On Sunday, after church, a large group of us went to Karato for the special “One Day Picnic”.  It’s an annual event here in Shimonoseki and local venders and artisans get together and display their products and sell food.  It was really wonderful.  They had many coverbands also, so I got to sing with a lot of American classics.  🙂  My Japanese friends thought I was really funny for it, but they liked it.  A sister at the church, Noriko-san, had her own display booth.  She studied chalk art in Australia and has come back to start her own business of making display signs and whatnot.  I have a picture in the album below of her display.  They are fantastic! 

I think that’s about it!  I’d love to hear from you!  So please shoot me an email or whatever.  I love getting letters too, so if you want to, send me a letter.  Here’s the address:

[address removed]

And here’s the link to the pictures:
This link has expired and has been removed.

For anything else, and for interim updates, please check out my blog:    http://xanga.com/pkcricket

Have a great rest of your week!

In Him,
Sarah ><>

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