Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Imprisoned for Christ -- Update

Thank you for your concern and prayers for our dear friends, Du and Esther.  Du has bravely communicated with us and another stateside friend via Skype during what seems like an interminable 3 months.  He sounds despondent, primarily because the authorities have prevented him from seeing his wife during her incarceration.

So it's with some relief that we received this photo -- proof that she is in prison, but proof also that she has been allowed visitation.

Notice the handcuffs
It turns out that she was arrested on account of utilizing "illegal curriculum" in her preschool. Esther had been given a gift of several English Children's bibles and was using these to teach the kids about morality, and to teach the parents about healthy family relationships.  The authorities seized the illegal materials, arresting both Esther and the lead teacher.

We ask you to continue to "support her"with your prayers as she serves the remainder of her prison term.  Pray for her reunion with her family and for their future, which is uncertain.

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Here Today, Gone Tomorrow
(Spring in Tokyo)

We love spring in Tokyo.  Spring makes its welcome appearance after a desperately chilly winter.  For three gorgeous months, our city is abloom with flowers that come one right after the other in an orderly succession. The season begins with the deeply colored plum trees. 

After that comes the Sakura cherry blossom.  This delicate flower lasts only 10 days.  The Japanese anticipate this all-too-brief season the way that American children pine away for Christmas.

Spring flowers follow in sequence after the Sakura.  Tulips.  Dogwood.  Azalea.  Iris.  Each flower lasts through its own season, spending itself and giving way to the next.  The mark of our Creator makes itself evident in the beauty of nature that surrounds us.


The grass withers, the flower fades, but the Word of God stands forever.
               -Isaiah 40:8