I felt very nervous. I was about to go to the OMF South Tohoku Prayer meeting. Meeting many new people all at once scared me. I am not good at small talk and I thought I’d be overwhelmed.
But turns out that small talk is not what OMF missionaries do when they get together. Even before the prayer meeting began all the missionaries seemed to be very interested in who I was and why I chose to be a short-term worker in Japan.
During the prayer-time we split into small groups so that we could take more time for each person. My group consisted of missionary ladies of various ages. Between toys and children running around the missionaries shared very personal problems with each other and prayed for together.
I didn’t see a group of people meeting because of work, but I saw a family coming together to strengthen and encourage each other.
After the prayer meeting we stayed in our groups because everyone was absorbed in conversation. The missionaries sincerely asked me about my first week in Japan and when I shared my experiences and struggles I received a lot of advice and encouragement.
I had a one-on-one conversation with one of the younger missionaries and she prayed for me.
Before I arrived at the meeting I had doubts about whether I will be helpful to the missionaries, but in the end, I realized it was not a time for me to give but for me to receive. I am thankful for being able to be part of such a loving and sharing community.
Written by Jana (Serve Asia Worker).