CMA Japan 2011
CMA Japan Mission Log
July 3 - August 9, 2011

Tiffany Case
Naomi Porter
Erica Bergfalk
Hannah Krohn
Katrina White
Christine Rempel
Please join us in our ministry to Japan. Check here daily to follow our steps.
We will be posting news, testimonies and photos on this page.


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Entry:  1 - 2 - 3 - 4 - 5 - 6 - 7 - 8 - 9
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Day 31 - 37:
August 3rd - 9th, 2011




Dear Friends and Family,


This is our last update from Japan! Today we fly back to Colorado. It has been an amazing summer packed full of awesome God moments!



First of off, we have another story/prayer request from our time in Iwaki:
gTurn to me and be saved, all the ends of the earth!  For I am God, and there is no other.  By myself I have sworn; from my mouth has gone out in righteousness a word that shall not return: eTo me every knee shall bow, every tongue shall swear allegiance.fh
 - Isaiah 45:22-23
gWefve been working with a guy named Ryo who wefve affectionately nicknamed gBossh.  He is a medical student from the Tokyo area who is working at the church during his summer vacation.  He is our team leader for the project at the hotel and wefve been serving with him for the past couple of days.  During lunch we began a basic conversation (his English is ok but not great) about his life and family.  Since he is staying at the church and a team leader we naturally assumed that he is a Christian.  When Naomi asked how he met Jesus he told us that he is not a Christian.  What a surprise!  So naturally we starting praying for him and asking Jesus to stalk him so he cannot escape Godfs love.
 
As we were working I asked him if he believed in God and he said, gNo.h  To that I asked if he believed in ANY god and he said, gNo.h  So then I asked, gThen why are you here helping people?  Why are you doing this?h  His response, gI donft know.h  WOW!  That blew me away.  Somehow in his mind he can compartmentalize his life in such a way that he can separate his actions from what he believes and God.  Things donft really need to make sense if you donft believe in god.  His reasoning for not believing is a pretty standard Japan mindset.  He told me that he canft believe in God because if he did then Muslims, Buddhists, Shinto, etc. wonft come to him when he becomes a doctor.  It all boils down to money.  Money is one of Japanfs gods. 
 
The Lord has obviously put Ryo on my heart.  He participates in all the meetings, sings, prays and speaks.  But he doesnft know why or what he is doing.  Today when we danced at the hotel he translated for us, preaching the gospel even though he himself doesnft believe. I am always struck by Godfs sense of humor in these things.  I know He is pursuing Ryo.  God has a plan for his life, and I think with all his time here seeing Christ in so many acts of service and experiencing His love, it is only a matter of time before the Lord truly gets a hold of Ryo.  Please pray with us for his salvation.  Jesus is THE way, THE truth and THE life, NO ONE comes to the Father but by Him.  Amen!h - Erica

Worship Dance Workshop and Concert

This last week we have been staying in Yokohama and working with Hongodai Christ Church. This is our 2nd time to work with this church and we were so happy to be back! We have been staying in a nice big house that was donated to the church. It has been such a blessing to have all this room! This last week we had the privilege of teaching a two-day workshop on Thursday and Friday. The workshop opened each morning with worship (in English and Japanese!). Katrina and Naomi taught the younger kids while Tiffany and Christine taught the older group. Most of the students were believers from their church school, but a few were unbelievers invited by friends at the church. One woman watched the first day and then brought her neighborfs daughter the next. We pray that the truth of the Gospel was clearly evident through our words and actions.

On Thursday Naomi shared a devotional on worship as a lifestyle. She talked about presenting our bodies as living sacrifices (Rom. 12:1) and honoring God in every area of our lives. Christine led the devotional on Friday. She shared about the amazing grace of Godchow we donft deserve and could never earn His love. This was a beautiful introduction to the song we danced to as a whole group (CMA team and workshop participants) -- gAmazing Graceh in English and Japanese. We loved getting to share our hearts with these wonderful students!


Katrina taught the younger group a dance to gHow Deep the Fatherfs Love for Ush. She shared about how much God loves us and how absolutely nothing can ever separate us from His love. Jesus demonstrated the full extent of His love for us by dying on the cross so that we might know true life. It was precious to watch these beautiful girls telling the story of His love through dance.

Tiffany taught gJesus Died My Soul to Saveh to the older group and it was awesome to see the piece come together. There were two boys in the class. They were so eager and dramatic, and we loved watching them express the message of the song. The students worked really hard and did an excellent job dancing to this powerful song.

The concert was held on Saturday at 11am and was a wonderful outreach event. It was great to perform with other ministries at the church including their dance ministry and a Gospel Hula group. This church has so many awesome outreaches to the community, and it was great to see the body of Christ in action! The message of the concert was outreach, and we pray many seeds were planted!

gAfter the concert I was able to talk to a girl whom we met while doing relief work in Iwaki. She is also a dancer and lives in the Yokohama area. It was such a God-thing that she was able to come and see us dance. She told me that my testimony really touched her heart (I shared about my experience with my back injury and the way God works beauty out of brokenness.) She said she was really hurting and felt God healing her heart as I spoke and we danced. She had lost the desire to dance and shared that God had renewed this desire while she watched. It is so humbling to be used by God and beautiful to share the comfort wefve received with others.h ~Naomi
gBlessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.h ~2 Corinthians 1:3-4
gI was talking with one of our friends here in Yokohama and she shared something that really encouraged me. She said that when we were here last summer one of the church members said, gWhen they dance I donft see individuals, I see God.h I canft tell you how much that encouraged my heart (and gave me goose bumps!). This is one of the exact things we pray for every time we dance. Lord let them see you, not us. We never want to get in the way or be a distraction from people seeing Jesus! After one of our events I was able to talk to a sweet lady about pressing on and following God even in hard times. I felt like the Lord wanted me to pray for her, so I asked if that would be okay. We stood in the kitchen and prayed, when I was done we were both teary eyed. She then said, gCan I pray for you?h She prayed this long fervent prayer for me. It was such an incredible God thing. Here I am focused on giving and God is giving right back to me!h– Tiffany

Youth Service

On Saturday night we took part in their youth service. They gave us 30 min for dance and testimony. Naomi shared about her experience in Nepal and the way the Lord used that experience to break her heart for the lost and learn to love with Godfs love. She encouraged the group that night to use the talents God has given them to draw others to Christ. Whether your talent is singing, sports, or playing with kids, just be available and willing to love like Jesus loved. This church has a large soccer ministry, and we were able to hear stories of many of them giving their lives to Jesus because the coaches kept sharing the gospel with themc awesome! There was a large soccer team at the youth service that night.  Many of them are unbelievers. We are praying that God uses the songs we danced to and our words to help water the seeds that have been planted in these boysf hearts.

Sunday Adventuresc Ministry at Church and Dancing at a Train Station!

Sunday was a big wonderful last ministry day here in Japan!! In the morning we danced at the childrenfs service, and then Tiffany spoke and we danced in the adult service. After that we had a series of God blessing us in amazing ways.

First off, we have been very tired this week. This is the end of our trip and we just came off a very physically and emotionally tiring week doing relief work up north. We have had a very busy week here and had to spend time changing all of our dances to 3 people, because our 2 sweet team members flew home. So this has been a week of trusting God to be our everything! Clinging to the fact that when we are weak, He is SO strong! We were able to see/feel Him strengthening us daily. That brings me back to Sunday. After the morning service the plan was to go straight over to the station where we would again get the amazing opportunity to dance outside in front of the train station. It was SO hot outside, and we had an hour performance planned. We were praying like crazy for God to send in the clouds and even some rain. After lunch we got our first surprise, we were going to get to go home and rest before heading over to the station. Thank you Jesus! We then took every precaution we could in preparation of dancing in intense heat (umbrellas for shade, extra water, sunscreen). We gave our worries to the Lord and put our trust in Him. We stepped out the door to drive to the station andc.CLOUDS!!!!! Andc..SPRINKLES OF RAIN!! It was one of those amazing moments were God reminds you, gI am listening to your prayers; I will answer and I will provide.h The weather was perfect the whole time! We couldnft have imagined anything better! This performance was to raise awareness and raise money for a ministry the church is running in one of the devastated areas up north. They have a house called gOasish (how appropriate) where they serve tea and host volunteers as they serve in the community. They asked if we would share our experiences from our time in Iwaki the week before. So during our performance Katrina and Naomi shared about things they saw and experienced in Iwaki. They tied it into their personal testimonies and then into the Gospel. God was powerfully using them as His mouthpiece!

We danced on cobblestones in the big open space in front of the station. This was such an amazing time of worship/ministry!

gAs we danced to the very first song that day, my eyes welled up with tears. Dances that I had done too many times to count on this trip, now took on new depth and meaning. As we danced to the song, gStillh I was taking in my surroundings. Around me a giant courtyard filled with people in many walks of life. So many hurting and in need of their Savior. I spin and above my head are 2 giant birds, gently and nobly soaring through the air. The words of the song play in my head, gWhen the oceans rise and thunders roar, I will soar with you above the stormcI will be still and know you are Godh. As I danced that day the Lord was speaking things to my heart, working in me personally. As I was ministering to others, God was also ministering to me. Oh Lord you amaze me.h - Tiffany

During the performance a young teenage girl stood near us leaning on a light pole. As Katrina spoke, Tiffany went over and talked to her for little bit. After the performance Naomi was able to talk to her more and pray for her. After the prayer the girl had tears in her eyes, Lord please draw her to You! Katrina spoke with a lady who had been touched by her testimony. She was able to encourage and exhort her as well as spend time praying for her. So many people passed by that day; some stopped and watched. Please pray that God would keep working in their hearts and that He would put believers in their life that can tell them about the One who loves them with a deeper love than they will ever know.

Our Last Day in Japan

Monday was our day off!!!! Yay! It was our first day off (with no travel) since the second week of our trip. So needless to say, it was a good day! Rocky and Shuhei (our Kita-Kyushu friends) were up in Tokyo for ministry this week. They came to have lunch with us! We were so happy. After a long trip it was like getting to see family! After that we did some shopping with Chisako, who is taking good care of us here in Yokohama. That night her dad took us out to a delicious dinner. Their family is so sweet and we had a wonderful night with them.

That brings me to today! WE ARE FLYING HOME!! Our flight leaves tonight Tuesday, at 5:30pm and we arrive at DIA on Tuesday night at around 5:30pm. With the time difference we travel for about 24 hours and still arrive at the same time, crazy! Please pray for safe travel and good rest. Pray that our luggage all comes through okay. (When Hannah and Erica flew home last week, the airline lost their luggage.) Pray for good connections without delays. Pray that the Lord would continue to work in our hearts and teach us more about Himself. Pray that if God wants to give us more ministry opportunities as we travel home, we would seize them!

We canft thank you enough for all your love, encouragements and prayer support these past 5 weeks. There have been so many times we have felt your prayers and God has used your words of encouragement to spur us on! We love you all!



Serving an Amazing and Mighty God!


Tiffany
Tiffany and CMA Japan 2011 Team





More photos from Yokohama >here<

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Web site:
CMA Japan 2011 - http://magnifythelord.org/cma/Japan2011