Serving in Japan, Part 2

Call to Missions

On an unsuspecting day near Christmas break in high school, our freshman Bible teacher showed us a video about a teen ministry which took summer missions trips all over the world to preach the Gospel.  In a darkened room full of chatty teenagers, I was gripped by the video and could not pull my eyes away.  I went to my next class and told my friend that I had to go on a missions trip the next summer!  She looked at me oddly and just said, “ok?”

That began God’s call to missions in my life.  I went to India that summer and fell in love with sharing the Gospel with people who had never heard it.  For a month, we did evangelistic dramas and saw the blind, deaf and lame healed.  Many, many people were saved.  The next summer I went back again for two months.  Two years later my mom and a friend, who had been on both trips, went back to stay with the Pastor’s family and did a lot of discipleship and preaching in homes and at churches.  I was eighteen at the time.

When I entered college, I was challenged to lay down my call to missions and wait for confirmation from the Lord–that I wasn’t going out of my own desire but out of a call from the Lord.  I waited for nine months.  It was difficult not having an answer for people when they asked what I was going to be doing.  In college, we went on a two week service and arts trip to the jungles of Peru.  This time, I was so excited to be able to speak with people myself and not need a translator.  It was maybe a month later, during worship at a Wednesday night service, the Lord clearly spoke to me that He would send me…I had only to pursue Him.  It was the confirmation that I had been waiting for.

To make things short, in 2006, at age twenty-one (after graduating from college), I moved to Mexico to begin a two year missionary training program with World Indigenous Missions (WIM).  I worked in the cold, foggy mountains with teenagers in a youth center.  I witnessed there for a total of three years, discipling and training youth to win their city for Jesus.  However, I knew that my long term call was not for Mexico (that had mostly been reached), but for Asia.

In a long series of events, I had become interested in Japan and one day discovered the staggering statistic that only 0.4% of the population had heard and believed the Gospel.  My heart dropped, especially when I realized that the majority of the church population in Japan was over the age of sixty.  Eventually, I became connected with some missionaries in Japan and made a scouting trip there in 2009 to meet different missionaries and ministries to see if this was what the Lord had for me.

Indeed it was. I moved to Japan in March of 2010, and began working with Fuse Jesus Community, a young church plant with the desire to reach the younger generation with the Gospel and make disciple-making disciples.  The mission was not just to see one church planted but many churches reaching the last corners of Japan.

 Look for more of Janine’s story soon…