Light Invades Darkness – Japan: The Start of My Journey
Hello everyone. I am writing this blog post at a Pause Cafe in Ikebukero, Tokyo. I am in Tokyo as part of a Discipleship Training School (DTS) run by Youth With A Mission (YWAM.)
I left Anchorage, Alaska on the morning of the 29th of March. I flew to SEA/TAC (Seattle Tacoma International Airport). Then I flew to LAX (Los Angeles International Airport). After a night in LA, I flew for twelve hours to Narita Tokyo International Airport. Then I took a two and a half hour train ride to Edogawabashi Station, which is the closest station to our house. Our house is definitely an example of missionary living, ten guys, one house, one bathroom, and one awesome God holding things together. All of us here have gone through some radical transformation in our hearts. One of the girls broke her foot last week, and God healed all the bones in three days.
The DTS is currently in the second week of lecture phase (this phase is the first three months of the five month program) and we finished the introduction week right after arriving in Japan. Introduction week was mainly about learning about the program and getting to know each other. There are seven guy, seven girl students, and many leaders. It is awesome. Back on topic now, after introduction week, we studied the Kingdom of God and now we are studying The Nature And Character of God. Over these past two weeks, God has been revealing to me some of the lies I have believed about myself and God. It has been quite difficult and painful to address these issues. However, the difficulties are nothing compared to how wonderful getting to know God has been.
Another thing I want to address is that Tokyo is amazing. I love the people here in Japan. Everyone is so friendly. If you get lost, ask for the name of the nearest station and almost anyone will help you find it. However, most of the people here have no hope. It is so sad riding on the trains and seeing all of the lonely people. So many Japanese people have no idea that they are loved. YWAM is a missionary organization, so we as students are asked to interact with the Japanese people. Our goal is to see many Japanese people come to Christ. The picture above was taken in Shibuya at the busiest cross walk in the world. We played Rock-Paper-Scissors with random people crossing the intersection. We also do ministries with Japanese organizations. The ministry I am doing is simply praying over Waseda University. Other DTS members help out with a homeless church, pray over Tokyo University, teach English, or work with the high school program HiBA. We are also praying over the area of Ikebukero. It is wonderful to see the transformation that God is bringing to Japan. This was a super cool place I saw near the Tokyo Dome.
While in Japan, we are also required to go to churches here. We can pick anyone we want to go to. The last couple of weeks, I went to a church called Cornerstone, which is in Ikebukero. It is really wonderful partnering with churches in Japan. Most of these churches have been doing what we are for much longer than we have.
There are also a couple of random facts about Japan I would like to address. There is no insulation in most houses. Most houses have washers, but no driers. There are many types of garbage cans together: plastic, pet bottles, metal, and combustibles and everything must be separated into these groups. Trains are the main mode of transportation. Wi-Fi is everywhere, but very rarely free. Most people in Japan can understand little to no English. Many things in Japan are written in broken English and make no sense to native English speakers. If you ride on an escalator, the left is for standing, the right is for walking. Most Starbucks are amazing here, they are all over Tokyo, and they have menus with pictures and English for non Japanese speakers.
I am so excited to be able to share this journey with all of you. Being Japan is a dream come true, and I hope that you get the opportunity to here. Most importantly, I am so grateful that God has allowed me to take part in what he is doing in Japan. I can’t wait to share more with you of what God is doing in us and the Japanese people. I am so excited!!!