Posted by: whereintheworldismike | November 19, 2015

Lead the Church Now! Pt. 7

This has been a fun trip to Japan. Before I went, I wondered what I would do a lot of the time. There were a number of big gatherings to attend. There were some small meetings, but there was also a lot of open times with nothing scheduled.

At Kansai Bible Institute, there was a meeting of Japanese Christian leaders hearing case studies of innovative outreaches that many are conducting in this land that has been long resistant to the Gospel. It was encouraging to hear how several were going outside the walls of the traditional church to show God’s love in a number of ways to those still without purpose or hope.

Between speakers, I had the most fun sharing with KBI seminarians about discipleship that touches the heart and hands as well as the head. They ate if up and I loved being able to brainstorm with them about how such innovations could possibly be implemented in their context.

Then we moved on to Gospel Town up north near Sendai. Here my wife taught Strengths Finder 2.0 (in Japanese, of course). The teaching included a time of discussing in groups how the students who are preparing for a life of ministry could better team together in a way that their strengths could complement one another. They loved my video on Sanctification. They also got how discipleship must include the heart and hands as well as the head.

Next we moved on to Tokyo where we had a number of meetings but also the biggest block of open time. That left time for meetings with old friends. The leader couple of the house church we planted in Okinawa has moved to Tokyo so we met with them and had a stimulating conversation on our roles in the Lord’s work at this time in our careers. We met with some who were struggling to see how their faith in God fits with what is going on in Japan and in the world.

During one break in the pretty much non-stop action, God prompted me to create this image:

Situation in World 2015 Bil crop

The first usage was on FaceBook. But at a couple of meetings it was very evident that God used it to strengthen and build faith where it was fledgling.

It is obvious to me and to many that God is separating out the righteous and the unrighteous at this time in history. In the figure above to the left is the condition of one facing away from Jesus and living for themself. To the right is one who has pledged allegiance to Christ and asked him to help them live for him instead of themself. Through the work of the indwelling Holy Spirit, they are growing in holiness as they daily submit to God’s Spirit inside them.


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