Summer Camp

September 8, 2011

We had such an awesome summer camp for kids and youth at our church.  While we were in South Korea this spring, we met a Japanese pastor.  We had an opportunity to share about the needs in Japan.  He told his church members about us and our church and they decided to send a mission team of young adults to our church. We were blessed to have them and all the kids LOVED them.  Many kids were still under stress from aftershocks and radiation threat, so it was nice to see their smile as they played with Korean team members.










Opening Worship Service










Look at their smile!










We had barbeque for dinner.












Everyone loved Michael’s ribs!













































Categories: Hope for Japan News.

Tags: , , ,

We are back!

September 7, 2011

Wow, we have been away from the blog world for a while!  Sorry we haven’t updated our blog for a while.  August was such a busy month.  We hope you all had a wonderful summer!

We want to thank you all for your prayers and encouragement as we grieved the loss of Yu’s grandmother.  We miss her so much but we also praise God that she is in heaven right now. We want more Japanese people to have a personal relationship with God so that they can have an eternal life.

In the middle of August, we went to Gold Coast,Australia for our dear friend’s wedding.  The bride grew up with Yu in Japan so she is just like her little sister.  What a blessing it was to celebrate with her and her family!

Even though she is a lot younger, they did almost everything together!  We were not sure if we could make it until the last minute but I was SO thankful that we got to go and Luke had a chance to meet his family in Australia!

We can’t believe it’s already September!  After a short summer break, we started our ministries again.  We are going to focus on disaster relief effort this fall, but we are also praying that our student ministry will grow as well.  We are going to start teaching English at church and we hope many kids and students will come from the community.

We pray God will continue to use us in amazing ways.  Thank you for keeping us in your prayers!  We are here thanks to God’s wonderful plans and YOUR prayers and support!!!  We are honored to partner with you as we work for His glory!

Categories: Family.

Tags: , , ,

Prayer Request

August 2, 2011

We would like to ask you to pray for our family as we grieve over the loss of Yu’s grandmother.  She went to be with the Lord on Monday.  Even though we will miss her so much, we know it was God’s timing and she is in a better place.  God has blessed our time with her and we thank God for her wonderful life.

Our prayer is that people who are coming to the memorial service will feel God’s peace and love.  Most of her relatives and friends do not know Christ.  We know it will be a wonderful opportunity to share about God’s promise.

Thank you for your prayers and encouragement!

Categories: Prayer Needs.

Tags: , ,

It’s a Dirty Job

July 16, 2011

It’s a dirty job but somebody has to do it.  That was exactly the approach that had been taken when cleaning up after the tsunami.  Many of the standing houses will be torn down due to structural damage.  However, there are some that can be saved.  Before anyone ever thinks of living in one of these homes, a lot of changes have to occur.  First the rubble has to be removed.  Then the houses are stripped down to the wood and/or metal frame.  And after power washing and bleaching, the rebuilding begins.



















This picture shows Michael at one of the houses being reconstructed by Samaritan’s Purse.  It is one of 500 homes scheduled to be rebuilt.  It’s a pain staking job.  It’s a really dirty job.  But through everyone’s generous efforts and donations, someone will have their house restored.  After the walls, ceiling, and floors are gutted, the task of removing all the mud begins which is concentrated under the floor boards on the concrete slab.  It’s hard to say what all is in the mud except that it has fuels and fish.










That’s the dirty part.  The great news about all this is that through the efforts of Samaritan’s Purse, many Japanese families are helped and at no cost to the owner.  It’s hard to imagine having a 30 year mortgage on a tsunami hit house that was not covered by insurance.  We are praying that many will come to know Jesus in a truly meaningful way through this.  But, as people continue to volunteer with the help more and more people have a chance to see the goodness of God.










Another team arrived today.  We can only expect good things in the days ahead.  We look forward to possibly seeing some of our readers here to help.  Wouldn’t that be something?  Cleaning houses and praising God.  Sounds like a winner.

Categories: Aid for Japan.

Tags: , , , ,

#1 Role Model

July 16, 2011

Back in October I started a post on role models.  The World Series had just begun.  Josh Hamilton was all the buzz along with the rest of his team.  There was a lot of talk about role models and about Hamilton in particular.  Growing up, kids don’t really think about who their role model is or isn’t.  For me, it was just about who I liked as a player.

With the fast and upcoming parenthood around the corner, I began to think about what a role model ought to be.   Nine months later I’m still wrestling with it.  It’s not because I don’t know in theory what a role model should be.  It’s that I don’t think that sports players should be what kids try to emulate.  At least not to the extent that is often the case.

What children need so desperately more than ever are parents.  As a kid, I had a lot of friends from good homes, bad homes, broken homes, to mended homes.  In all of them, it was essentially the same.  Parenting, parenting, parenting.  Parents ought to be the number one role model in a home.  That’s not to say sports teams or players don’t count.  They just don’t make first string.

As a parent, I’ve learned a lot of things:

1. Children need parents not managers.  It doesn’t matter how many times I tell my son something I still have to be evolved by partaking in the process. (I know, I know, he’s only 6 months old but he’s still pretty sharp in my estimation.)

2. Children see children do.  Even a six month old wants computer and phone time.  Any time Luke sees either he makes a mad dash to take control.  Anything unhealthy around the house will just make taint Luke’s upbringing.

3. Children don’t just need to be told they are loved.  They need to be shown they are loved.  Of course, can’t help but want to hold my child and tell him I love him.  Sing to him, read to him, or just have a good laugh.  That kind of quality time isn’t the same as watching television.

This may not be much to more experienced parents but these three observations sure have gone a long way.  And while our son may grow up to idolize some great athlete, musician, or even politician, he has two parents that are working hard to be the best parents and role models we can be.

Thank you for taking time to read this post.  We would love to hear from you whether you agree or disagree.  God bless and take care!  Until, next time….





Categories: Family.

Tags: , ,

Volunteers from Brownsville, Texas

July 14, 2011

We had a wonderful time with the volunteers from First Baptist Church of Brownsville, Texas.  Their church has helped with disaster relief efforts in many countries.  Before they came, the only thing we knew was that there would be a team coming from Texas.  We were excited to meet them but what amazed us was that a couple that came was the parents of Yu’s friend, Justin Smith, from DBU.  They were also the uncle and aunt of Yu’s good friend, Christy Gandy.  Yu had such a great time getting to know them!  All the volunteers were wonderful and we thank God for sending them to Japan!










Bible Study and prayer time with the team.










Leaving for prayer walking.










Luke loved being held by everyone.










Such a great team!










They stayed at the community center in the tsunami-hit town.










Ready to work!










Working very hard!









Praying with the family that lost almost everything.










Singing “Amazing Grace” in front of the temporary housing in Sendai.










Mr. and Mrs. Smith sang a song in the worship service.










Yuta and Eriya sang as well!










We hosted a farewell dinner for the team.










Michael praying for the seeds they had planted…










It was such a blessing to serve with them!  We know they have touched many lives.  We are so thankful for all they have done in Japan.

We look forward to hosting more teams!!!

Categories: Aid for Japan.

Tags: , ,

Please pray for these precious kids…

June 30, 2011


I want to ask you all to pray for these precious kids who have been affected by the earthquake, tsunami, and radiation treat in Japan.  As a mother, my heart hurts so much to know what they are going through.  Even though they are having such a difficult time, they always smile when I take pictures of them.  Their beautiful smiles make me happy but at the same time, I know each of them has so many unspoken feelings/concerns.  Please pray the day will come soon when they can all laugh, smile, and have tons of fun without being worried about the aftershocks, nightmare of the tsunami, radiation, destroyed homes, and all the other traumas that they may have.









All the pastors’ kids got together for the special meeting.  Playing cards while the adults had a meeting.










Some of these kids are from Fukushima where the nuclear plant exploded.  They hadn’t been able to play outside because of the radiation threat.  They were so happy to come to Sendai where they could play outside.  They were so thankful to receive rain jackets that your generous donation helped us buy.  THANK YOU!!!










Guess what they are making?  Their OWN movie theater!  These kids live in a tsunami-hit town and almost everything was destroyed.  They decided to “make” a movie theater so that they could watch movies (DVDs) together.  What a brilliant idea!


























Aren’t they precious?  We were able to give them lots of cookies for their opening day.  Hope they enjoyed them!   As these kids painted the cardboard boxes, one of the moms told her daughter to be careful since she was wearing one of a few shirts she had left.  It broke my heart.  Since many of these kids lost everything, we are going to deliver clothes that have been donated by our FBCA family (our sending church).  If you want to know how to donate, please e-mail us (  Thanks!










We hosted a special event for kids at our church.  A volunteer team from Colorado joined us and we all had such a great time!










Singing praise songs!  Our friend, Yuta, did a great job! Michael did a wonderful job sharing a children’s message.










They all got a gift that was bought with the Aid for Japan donation money.  As you can imagine, they were SO excited!










Playing games!










Having lots of fun together.










Dinner time!










What an awesome fellowship we had!  In this picture, there is a girl who lost her grandparents in the tsunami.  They have yet to found her grandmother’s body.  Please pray for her and her family.  Also, some of these kids’ (they are siblings) dad works for the Japanese army and he has been super busy since March 11th.  They don’t have much time to see their dad.  Pray for them as they miss their daddy!

Thank you for keeping these children in your prayers.  We know your prayers will make a difference!

Categories: Prayer Needs.

Tags: , , , , ,

Update on June 26th

June 27, 2011

Thanks to the generous gifts from many of you, we have been able to continue delivering supplies to the people in Oshika Peninsula.










Getting cookies, coffee, soaps, wipes, books, coloring books, and lots of meat!












More bug spray!










We delivered a special machine that heats water in a bathtub! They were SO happy to be able to take a hot bath!










Strong men!












One of the community leaders who will be delivering bug spray to each family in Kyubunhama.












This flag says “Kyubunhama will not give up!”  This is a fisherman’s town.










If you were in Japan and met someone who lost everything- I mean everything (family, house, job, and all the belongings), what would you say to that person?  This is a question that we ask ourselves whenever we visit those tsunami-hit areas.  We have been visiting them a lot since we came back to Japan, but it never gets easy.  These small towns are a lot cleaner compared to three months ago, and many of them are moving from the temporary shelters (elementary school, town hall, local community center, etc.) to the temporary housing that the government has built.  They are trying to move on, but they are still hurting.  When they move to the temporary housing, they are on their own.  They don’t receive food or supplies from the government anymore.  And with no jobs available one can only imagine what a difficult time this is.  In fact, when there was a big earthquake in Kobe in 1995, many people died in those temporary houses.  Many of them died alone, victims of ‘kodokushi’ (lonely death), who only got noticed well after their death.

This is why we can’t stop visiting them.  We want them to know that they are loved and cared for.  More than anything, we want them to feel the love of Christ.  So please don’t stop praying.  We know your prayers will make a difference in their lives.

Categories: Aid for Japan.

Tags: , , , ,

Father’s Day

June 27, 2011

I know I am posting this late, but I wanted to take time to write about my favorite dads.  I am so thankful to have them in my life and I know Luke feels the same way!

I have been so blessed to be raised by a godly father.  He is a great example of a father who loves God, family, and others around him.  He is busy with his job on weekdays but takes time to come see us and help us in the evenings.  On Saturdays, he drives for 3 hours (one way) to Oshika Peninsula to help those who lost homes due to the tsunami.   I have been amazed to see how much he does for them.  And on Sundays, he is pretty busy at church.  I am not trying to brag, but I have a great dad.   He takes care of Luke when we minister to young people and we can’t do it without his help!  I thank God for giving me my dad.










This year was Michael’s first Father’s Day!  Luke (and I) made a gift for him and he loved it!  We are grateful for everything he does for us and for others.  He has been a great dad ever since Luke was born and Luke LOVES playing with his daddy!  I am always touched by his heart for Japanese people.  He has been going to the tsunami-hit areas almost every week to help people there.  Last Saturday, he went there with other church members and helped cleanup a destroyed home.  As you can imagine, it is a dirty job.  But he hasn’t complained about getting dirty.  When he came home, he was happy to report that the owner of the house was so happy to find some of their important documents that were under all the mud.  With his limited Japanese, he is trying so hard to get to know these people.  Luke and I are so proud of him!  We pray God will continue to give him strength and wisdom as he shares His love with those who are hopeless.












Happy Father’s Day to all the dads in the world!

Categories: Family.

Tags: ,

Update on June 16th

June 16, 2011

Konnichiwa (Hello) from Sendai!   We came back in the end of May and have been super busy!  Last week, we were able to visit the tsunami-hit areas twice.  We were speechless as we drove through the destroyed cities.  Yu had tears in her eyes since her grandparents lived in one of those cities (they moved to Sendai after the earthquake).  All the places looked completely different.  We can’t find any words to describe what we saw and how we felt.

We delivered food, water, and lots of bug spray to the temporary shelters and homes of the people that Yu’s father had visited before.  We were encouraged to meet people who were so happy that we were there.  They needed food and supplies, but more than anything, they needed someone who would listen to their stories.  Many of them are still grieving the loss of loved ones (some of them lost their entire family members) and others don’t know how to start a new life without a house and a job.  It has been three months since the earthquake and tsunami took so many lives, but the process for recovery/reconstruction is taking such a long time.

We want them to know that we love them and care for them.  We want to encourage them and help them.  But our prayer is that they will find hope and comfort in our Lord.  Please pray that God will continue to use us in mighty ways.










We prayed before we left.




































We delivered water and coffee to the junior high school that is being used as a temporary shelter.










We were able to give this lady (she is one of the leaders of this place) a poster with a scripture.  She said she would put it on the wall.  Our church has been serving lunch at this junior high school every Saturday for the last two months.










In Kyubunhama, they have made this community center a place where people can meet, cook, and get water.










More coffee! You can see the information wall on the right.










If you look at this picture closely, you can see a sticker that says “TEXAS TWO”.  This van was bought with the money that was donated by BGCT (Baptist General Convention of Texas).  “Texas One” has been delivered to Morioka in Iwate prefecture.  The van was given to this community because many people lost their cars.  One of the community leaders told us that they were going to drive it to the fisherman’s meeting to discuss how to restart their business.  Thank you, Texas Baptists!










Finding out their needs and how we can help them.










Michael helping an old lady (he was so brave to offer her help in Japanese!)


























We delivered drinking water to the farm that hasn’t had running water for 3 months.  They have to drive for an hour 4 times a day to get enough water for their cattle.




























The family was having a difficulty with this pump (they keep water in this tank for bath and toilet) but these smart guys were able to fix the problem!










They were so happy to meet us!  The lady in the middle was so sweet to Luke!  Of course, Luke loved getting attention!










Tsunami was as high as the second floor of this apartment.










Another temporary shelter.  At one point, there were more than 400 people staying here.










Messages written by kids from west Japan.










Places that Yu used to visit.  Police officers are still looking for dead bodies in this area.










LOTS of disabled vehicles.










Temporary housing for those who lost homes.  We are planning to visit them.










Many fishermen lost their boats.  Please pray they can start fishing again soon.










Michael delivering bug spray on his second trip.  Thankfully, her house was safe so she is letting 20 people stay in her home.










Giving bug spray to the lady at the farm.  We love spending time with them!










This is our friend, Yuta.  He is serving as a volunteer this summer until he goes back to DBU to work on his master’s degree this fall.  He has been such a blessing!  The guys were asked to help mow the grass at the farm.  They worked hard!










Please continue to pray for people in Japan.  Please pray God will open doors as we get to know these precious people who desperately need Him.  Thank you for your love and prayers!

Categories: Aid for Japan.

Tags: , ,

Page 13 of 16« First...10«1112131415»...Last »