2015 Japan – Gao Phengsomboon

God is Faithful

Our Japan trip was my second missions trip ever. And as you know, Team Japan was a dance-based team, so our team met up several times every week for dance rehearsals and prayer. The pre-trip preparation process was an interesting journey full of excitement, joy, and fun (and at times exhaustion and frustration). We continuously asked God to reveal His heart for Japan when we prayed together and in our own quiet time. To be honest, I did not know how to pray for Japan at first. I asked God what I should expect from this trip. And God spoke to me through the song I often listened to at that time, “Good Good Father.” I then realized that what I wanted to see on the trip was the Japanese people knowing that God is a good father, and that they are so loved by Him. I remembered talking about missions in Japan with Pastor David Ahn, who had done ministry there for a year. He told me that Japanese people are hungry, but they do not know what they are hungry for. I felt sad when I heard that God’s children do not know how much He desires to meet them and express His love to them. So it became my prayer that the Japanese people would come to know this God who longs to love on them, and to know that this God is the only One who can satisfy their hunger.

On a Saturday night after missions training our team had a prayer meeting where we broke in two smaller groups and asked God for visions and His heart for Japan. Our team saw many different things including a park, and a wall with people standing behind trying to look over it. The very first thing I saw was a triangle. I did not know what it meant. We tried to guess what it could possibly mean. Completion? Trinity? We did not know exactly. I prayed that God would show me everything when I got there. That night was very powerful and we finally got the theme for our trip: to Father the Fatherless. But I was personally most excited to see everything I saw in my visions become real on the field.

Our team finally left for Tokyo on January 23. In the field, every day after breakfast we had a time of devotion where the team worshiped the Lord, meditated on some verses, and sought His guidance. I saw a triangle again on the second day. I was not sure if it was the vision God gave me, or if it was only my imagination because I had just eaten triangle kimbap for breakfast. For me, each day was mingled with excitement of what would happen, expectation for divine appointments, but also fear that we would not have anything to do. Our team made it to Osaka on the fourth day, and on the fifth day we were introduced to a local Christian girl named Saeka, who took us to a shopping area where we danced in a circular open space. After that we broke into groups and evangelized to people in the street. I was sent to talk to a few people but they did not understand English and did not want to talk to me. So I started to walk around and pray for people in this area and for this nation. I was tempted to think foolishly that what I was doing was futile, that I did not need to fly to Japan to just walk around this area and release my prayers. However, the Holy Spirit kept reminding me that what I was doing was powerful and mighty and that I was going to see its abundant fruits. So I kept walking and praying and finally had a chance to talk to a Japanese guy who was giving out packs of tissue that were advertising a local business. Mamoru was his name and he could speak a little English. So I started talking to him and helped him give out tissue paper. I told him how happy I was when I met God and became a Christian and how I wanted him to be happy like me. He listened to me intentively. He allowed me to pray for him even though he himself was not really sure what praying meant. I prayed a simple prayer that he would come to know God and His love for him. This became one of the best moments from this trip. You don’t know how happy I was when I finally had a chance to talk to someone about Jesus and pray. It was like you have been looking forward to rain during a drought and eventually the first raindrop has fallen on your face. It means that another seed of the Gospel has been planted in Japan. Praise the Lord.

Afterward this time of street outreach our team gathered together and talked about what happened. Danny, our team leader, shared something about the guy he talked to. And at the end of his sharing time he said to us, “By the way, this area is called the something triangle.” I was stunned for a moment. Wow, the triangle that I had been looking for for many days was the ground that I was standing on. Suddenly I felt like all of my hard work had been rewarded. To a lot of people this might look like a small thing, but for me it was a big deal. I realized that if God was faithful to answer my prayer for this little thing, how much more will He be faithful to answer all the prayers we have sown into this nation. When God commands us to be faithful in small things, He shows us that He is also faithful in everything, whether big or small. Those who wait upon the Lord will never be put to shame.

I have heard from many people that Japan mission trips are always different from other missions trips, and how hard it is to talk to people about the Gospel of Jesus Christ. But for me our Japan trip was a challenging one, but also one by which my faith has been strengthened the most. The Scripture says in Hebrews 11:1 that “now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” Thus we cannot just rely on what we can see in our flesh. Without faith we cannot please God, so we have to believe that every, single prayer that we pray for Japan and every word of life that has been spoken are the seeds that God Himself will cause to grow and bear a lot of fruit. For He who calls you is faithful, and He will surely do it.

I would like to invite you to keep praying for Japan. First of all, please pray that the hearts of the Japanese people will be turned to the Father. Secondly, pray that God will use dance to establish his Kingdom in Japan. Last but not least, please pray that God will raise up the future generations of Japan that will intercede for their nation. I believe that I will soon see Japan sending out countless missions teams to other nations. Let’s believe for Japan together!

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