With the close of the 4th week of the OPC Ishinomaki, Japan Project, Team #2 is now traveling home to those loved ones they cherish the most in this life. The team left Narita, Japan on Friday morning as Tim and John boarded a plane to Chicago; at the same time Dave and Steve boarded their plane for Dulles, Brian has now boarded a plane for San Francisco and Derek will be heading back to New Zealand later in the day. We left Jeff and Daniel at the Sendai airport as they intend to spend several days touring the country of Japan. Jimmy will remain in Japan and will be the transition man from Team #2 to Team #3. He will be quite busy waiting for Team #3 as he helps the staff at the Nozomi Center provide a Thanksgiving dinner to the local residents and conduct a bazaar to benefit those in the community. We are so thankful for our very good friends and brothers/sisters in the Lord, Cal and Edie Cummings, Elder Kasua Sasaki and his wife Jinko, and friend Mr. Hoshi for coming to the airport to bid us farewell. We are thankful for Cal, his devotions and his tender heart as he gave thanks to our Lord for our safety, for the accomplishments that the Lord allowed us, and for the reunion with our relatives. We joyfully sang ‘To God be the Glory’ in our farewell as we then thrust ourselves into the hectic activities of passing security and boarding our planes.
Now as we travel east watching the hours of November 16th fade, we are able to look out the window of the airplane thousands of feet above the northern Pacific Ocean and view the sun setting amongst the clouds. As one breathes in this beauty of light and darkness, clouds and voids, and the water somewhere below, one cannot help be reminded of God’s great and awesome creation. God is so great!! One can only feel so small, so insignificant in this vast expanse of time and space. Yet those of us on Team #2 have felt that the Lord has indeed deemed it His will for us to spend 14, 24, or 28 days away from our loved ones to help a community of believers reconstruct a physical building to serve as a church where God’s word can be proclaimed and His children brought to a knowledge of saving faith. We know full well that all of this has been and will be by God’s Infinite grace in the lives of His children in Ishinomaki, Japan. We pray and wish the best for the progress of Team #3 as they too undergo the challenges of demonstrating their love for Christ as they build their own relationships, perform their tasks of construction, and witness to the neighborhood as well as to our brothers and sisters in Japan.