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Nothing can stop our passion

In December 2020 COVID-19 cases were steadily increasing in Japan. This raised people’s concern and the government discussed whether to announce a second State of Emergency. This also meant that, as missionary, I needed to think twice in holding in-person seasonal outreach.

My husband and I serve in a rural city in northern Hokkaido and we sensed that people here were very cautious about COVID. Perhaps it was due to the limited medical facilities, or perhaps due to worries of social rejection once infected. In such an atmosphere, church needed to be more considerate in holding in-person events, even at Christmas. In this difficult situation, there were struggles in my heart:
Shall we give up Christmas outreach opportunities just because of COVID?
What about those people who were suffering from loneliness due to ‘Stay Home’ measures?
How can church or Christians show Jesus’ love and care to the society? 
How can Christians show we care in such a difficult moment?

I didn’t have an answer for any of these questions. But I prayed that God would show me and the church, where we are serving, the way that he wanted us to go. And God did give our church a way to show light to the world!
Though we could not sing together at church, we can still sing!
Though we could not worship together at church, we can still worship!
Though we could not meet and encourage each other in person, we can still show our care!

With this passion, our church started a Christmas Outreach Project. I played a Christmas medley instrumental, my husband recorded it and sent it to our local pastor, Pastor Yamahiro. He and his family listened to this recording, sang along with sign language, and recorded it. Meanwhile, we also asked church members to write words of encouragement and take a photo of themselves. My husband combined all the recordings and pictures into an attractive video. This video was made into CDs. These CDs, together with a short message written by Pastor Yamahiro, were sent to the local hospitals and an old persons home.

In time of difficulty and darkness, God’s light is always there. Nothing can stop our passion to reveal this Light!

By Winny, an OMF missionary

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