Send-off and News from Japan

***I just got off the phone with Danny.  News update and prayer requests-

-Martin, the doctor on the trip is, ironically, sick with the flu and had to stay behind. Please pray for rapid recovery.  He is scheduled to rejoin the team on Saturday (our Friday)

-Danny and the team were waiting in a line that was backed up 6 kilometers in order to get gas.  Please pray that somehow they’ll get a connection with a quicker gas source. See below for a really neat story  my father-in-law sent.

-Pray for Ai-chan who Danny sat next to on the flight.  As he explained to this older Japanese woman, that he had left his family to come help the Japanese people in their time of need and tell them about the love of God, she started tearing up. Pray that God will be at work in her heart and that she would read the Christian literature that he gave her and that she would truly meet this God who IS LOVE.

Praises:

(from Dan Iverson) A Story of Community: To get gas, we organized church members to stand for hours in the gas lines to fill up small tanks that we could transport north.  One of our church members was talking with her neighbor.  When her neighbor asked what we were transporting north, our church member mentioned gasoline.  It just so happens, this neighbor’s husband owns a gas station.  Since learning about what we are doing, her husband has given our church a large tank to transport fuel.  He also comes each morning and fills all our tanks, kerosine to warm peoples houses and diesel for transport to take to the north.  Of course we pay him, but he gives it to us straight from the truck, as much as we need!  No more waiting in lines. He has been doing this for 2 days and will continue, praise the Lord.

An encouraging story: A Wycliffe missionary, supported by our church, Oyumino, has been helping out with the relief efforts and has been three times to some of the hardest hit areas in the north.  He has traveled three times with our trucks, close inside the evacuation zones and braved the threat of radiation with our trucks and team. A team came from USA yesterday with a radiation detector and they checked him. His levels were zero.  NO exposure. We are praising God for this encouraging news! He has shown Himself to be a refuge!

A Story of Hope: Pastor from the North Reunited With His Flock
There was a church of over 200 (one of the largest churches in Japan!) located just miles from the power plant.  When the warnings of the tsunami sounded, these people fled with just the clothes on their backs. They have lost everything and they are scattered throughout shelters.  150 of them are still unaccounted for.  Their pastor was in the Tokyo area for his son’s graduation when the earthquake occurred.  He has been trying to get to his church members and get in touch with them, but to no avail. Finally, he was able to catch a ride with one of our teams taking a truck.  Witnesses said that when the truck arrived, he jumped out and before one item was removed from the truck, he and his church members (those that are left) had a worship service.  He opened the word to Is 37 where Hezekiah prayed to God in overwhelming difficulty. He said:  “God established and carried our church through various difficulties for the last 60 years faithfully.  Earthquake, tsunami, even radiation cannot shatter what God started.” They sang “What a Friend We Have in Jesus.”
Another team is planning to take supplies to Iwaki city, 20 miles south of the power plant to help a pastor who chose to remain in the area without escape.
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