I decided to throw this post up tonight, as tomorrow we’ll have a bit earlier of a morning. Today we spent the bulk of the day with Yoshito and Steve and their missional community. Their congregation is following the model of the Soma Communities, a group of Acts 29 churches that emphasize smaller gospel communities on mission more than the Sunday Gathering. Although we haven’t been formally trained by Soma, their method has influenced the culture of Karis Church somewhat. We have a great deal of respect for them. We also were really impressed with what God is doing in Yoshi’s young plant. We gathered in his home for lunch. We then spent some time fellowshipping together before we jumped into a great discussion of Luke 15′s “prodigal son” story. That small group included both baby Christians and non-Christians. The community was very loving and open to us. It was an encouraging time.
We then returned to Higashi Tokorozawa where we are staying during our time. We went out to what Drew calls a “family restaurant.” It reminds me of an old Country Kitchen in the states. They are one of the few places that has a “drink bar,” meaning you get unlimited refills of soda, coffee, and tea. Drew and I had a great conversation with Yoshi and Steve about possible future partnerships. They expressed an ethusiasm about that possibility. We shared our excitement, as well. I can’t express to you just how encouraged we are. God has really answered our prayers for the trip already. We feel like Yoshi’s team is the perfect place for Karis Church to jump into service in Japan.
Tomorrow we will meet with an SBC planter in Shabuya in Tokyo. We’re not sure what the rest of our trip will look like, but we’re really encouraged by what God has done thus far.