International Ministries

A Footwashing at the Homeless Cafe!

October 2, 2010 Journal
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I just got back from Sweden.  It was beautiful, though a little cool.  I went with a group of handicapped ladies and their helpers from the Japan Baptist Union. I went as their translator and facilitator.  This group of ladies was so wonderful. It took extra planning for me because I didn’t have much idea about them and each one has different needs. Three of them needed wheel chairs and one needed oxygen.

We went to learn how the churches of Sweden are ministering to people with special needs.  I learned much more than I could have imagined.  However, today I want to tell about a special friend I made, Eivor.  She is 80 years old, lives alone and is a wonderful woman of faith.  She is on the go everyday, and twice a week she volunteers at her church’s “homeless café”.  That’s right her church has opened up the basement 5 evenings a week to serve the homeless with food and clothing donated from stores, restaurants and individuals.  

I was overwhelmed as I watched Eivor carefully and lovingly take off the dirty socks of a homeless person. After the feet had soaked in some soapy water, she took them in her hands to care for ingrown toenails, to clean away old skin, and treat any wounds.  Then she rubbed them with cream, giving them a good massage. She chatted with each one in a caring way.  I held the hand of one woman as Eivor cleaned an infected cut on her leg.  The woman squeezed my hand hard as she cried from the pain.  She gave me a kiss and thanked me for holding her hand afterward.

I could feel the Holy Spirit moving between Eivor and each person she ministered with.  I felt she was seeing Christ in each hurting person, and I know that she was being Christ as she gave more than was being asked for.

World Mission Offering

I was really fortunate to be able to go on this trip to Sweden.  My trip was paid for by the members of the group, so I felt especially privileged. I also know that you were praying for me and that was a double blessing.

John and I were just talking about what a challenge it has been to be in Japan over the past few years.  The dollar/yen exchange rate has dropped about 30%.  We know the economy has been a challenge for many of you too.  We pray for you.

We have about 60 individuals and 55 churches that support us on a regular basis.  We see those gifts monthly, quarterly or yearly.  Many more of you give toward our support through the World Mission Offering.  Thank you. We are blessed.

Perhaps you are reading this letter and realize you would like to join those 60 and be a deeper part of what God is doing specifically here with us.  It’s easy. Go to IM’s website, click on “Give” and then look for our name under “missionaries” or “Japan” to support us.

As always, thank you for your prayers, they lift us up.

Grace and Peace,

Tomoko

Prayer Points:

*Praise for the ladies of the JBU who traveled to Sweden. Praise for their faith and testimony.

*Pray for the Christ’s church around the world.  Isn’t it wonderful to think of all our brothers and sisters in many nations, and the many languages that sing and praise of Lord Jesus?

*THANK YOU!  You are the ones who sent us, and the reason we can be here.