Happy New Year! It’s the year of the monkey, or it is in Japan, anyway. It’s still the year of the sheep for a few more weeks in the rest of Asia.
|Wild monkeys on a roof near Lake Kawaguchi, last July. We saw them crossing the street on the power lines... and kept our hotel room window closed after that...|
|This is the view from my parents' front porch. I could finally see the sun 40 minutes after it came up.|
|I already look a little strained, and this was the first night...|
And yet it was a privilege to pray with probably 20 students and young adults who have a passion to show God’s love to the Japanese. I cried with a young Chinese woman as we talked about the way God has been using our Chinese missionary colleagues to bring reconciliation with Christians in Japan, overcoming a lot of painful history. Yesterday morning, we had coffee with Jeff, who was one of our InterVarsity leaders in Boston. It was so good to catch up, encourage each other, and fill him in on just how much he and his wife, Tara had equipped us for the work we’re doing in Japan. We also met Andrea, a new colleague, for the first time—she will be in Japan from February! Exciting!
Ironically, another wonderful thing that happened was finding a book called Introverts in the Church in the Urbana bookstore. (I felt like I should tell the people at the register to pray for anyone buying this book at Urbana, because they are probably struggling.) More about this book later, after I finish reading it...