“Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert.” ( Is. 43:19)
Just after starting our new “stay home“ life, God encouraged me with this scripture. I started to expect like others that we would return to normal life around Easter Sunday. But actually in the middle of April, not only in Canada but also all over the world, this pandemic had not reached its peak yet.
In Japan, many plants start to spring up and show colourful scenes in March, so I can feel “spring has come” through the spring colour. But here, even around Easter, the scenery had not changed yet and it was 0 degrees celsius in the morning. So sometimes I couldn’t imagine that we would see beautiful green and flowers. But Isaiah 35 reminded me of God’s promise about the recovery and colourful view again. One verse especially stayed in my heart:
“The ransomed of the LORD shall return and come to Zion with singing; everlasting joy shall be upon their heads; they shall obtain gladness and joy, and sorrow and sighing shall flee away.” (Is. 35:10)
Around the middle of May, finally many kinds of plants sprouted and our landscape totally changed to a real spring at once. Now we are surrounded by really a colourful and beautiful spring! I’ve never seen these quick changes before. I’m amazed that God’s work is really dynamic and powerful! Nature itself seems to be praising God, like this:
“The wilderness and the dry land shall be glad; the desert shall rejoice and blossom like the crocus; it shall blossom abundantly and rejoice with joy and singing. The glory of Lebanon shall be given to it, the majesty of Carmel and Sharon. They shall see the glory of the LORD, the majesty of our God.“ (Is. 35:1-2)
Now many of us are walking in each recovery step. It might be a long way but the spring life tells us the power of God and God’s good plan!
1. Financial update — We appreciate your prayer and financial partnership! Our faith promise total is now at 68%. Thankfully we have some new partnerships every week! God willing, we are praying that we can go back to Japan late this summer, but before that we need 100%.
Please pray for God to provide the rest of the partners we need, and let us know if you’d like to become one yourself.
2. Partnership Development — In May, we worked at home and had various chances to do Partnership Development — making videos, doing interviews and taking part in online meetings with GP, etc. Some churches will start gathering again soon, but we will need to continue partnership development mainly online.
Please pray for God to give us abundant wisdom and chances for building better partnerships.
3. Japan — The number of patients was going down, but for the past week, some areas are having a second wave. From March till the end of May, many churches stopped gathering and now many of them have restarted. Most of them have small rooms for Sunday worship, so a lot of challenges continue.
Please pray for God to encourage church leaders.
Thank you so much for your continuous and faithful prayer!!! Please let us know how we can pray for you!
– Yoko (& Robin) White