Saturday, May 29, 2010

Passion Tokyo Conference 2010

Last weekend I took a trip to Tokyo to check it out and to attend the Passion conference there. It was a very good service. There were about 1,600 people there and over a thousand of them were Japanese people. It reminded me that there are Japanese Christians still here in the country even if I never see them.
I tried to talk to some of them to see where they were coming from and almost all of the people I talked to were surprised that I came all the way from Fukuoka for the conference. Two guys told me "God bless you" in English. It was real sweet of them to speak so endearingly to me, a total stranger.
I didn't meet anyone from Fukuoka while I was there, but I was satisfied just seeing all of those Christians in one place. It was even more of a blessing to hear the service translated directly into Japanese by a pastor in Tokyo.

One could be cynical, like I often tend to be, and muse that perhaps not every Japanese person in attendance was a Christian. And they would be right.
But there was more than a single believer there and that is all that's needed for the Spirit to be present.
Praise God for that time. It reminds me to pray not just for potential believers in Christ, but also for the many young Christians that already live here in Japan.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Last week I was meeting with my friend, Kei. We were having our weekly Bible study on his University Campus. Kei thought I would be interested to know of a sign that the University had just recently posted.
Since Kei just so happens to be an expert in Japanese he helped translate it for me. Apparently the school is saying that students should be careful of "cult" groups on campus. People who come offering English language exchange, English Circles, or other types of groups because they will "brain wash" you with friendliness and kindness and then suck you into their religion where they will take all of your money.... and it goes on and on. It was a very detailed message and I was kind of surprised to see it. There had already been a message somewhere on campus that said that no apostatizing was allowed. I have never used a soap box on campus.
IN any case it was disheartening to me. Because now the students on campus will be more fearful of "cult" groups and perhaps anything that I could offer them.
I have no idea what the University defines as a "cult" and for all I know they could very well think that I was trying to recruit students into my own "cult" with my kindness and friendliness.
I just have to remember that what I have to tell the students about is much stronger than any block that the university has placed on me.
Be in prayer for the Christians on the college campus about this. No doubt it is disheartening to them as well as it is to me.