Giving you a little view of Japan without leaving your home!

Prayer letters, curious subjects, events, people, customs, and more for you to enjoy and learn.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

August/September Prayer Letter

1Co 4:5 Therefore judge nothing before the time, until the Lord come, who both will bring to light the hidden things of darkness, and will make manifest the counsels of the hearts: and then shall every man have praise of God.
As the summer quickly wanes into fall we realize that although the days are shorter with light, the light of the Gospel does not regard the time!! Just our use of that time can become shorter than we desire. The month of August has quickly faded into September and shortly this month will also be gone. Thank you that your prayers for the ministry are not even hindered by time differences because God is always on the throne listening to our heart's cry.

Suppose the theme of August would be surgeries and healing.  The first part of August was Ken's 2nd inpatient kidney stone surgery.  Two weeks later he had the stent left in, taken out via outpatient surgery.  With the first stay of a week, he again had opportunity to get the Gospel out in action, words and verse cards as well as tracts.  Although he enjoys the evangelistic part of inpatient stay, Ken was happy to have the 2nd surgery done through an outpatient technique.  We won't know the outcome of this 2nd surgery until he has his next check up the first part of October, but between the first and 2nd surgery his body was already trying to begin new stones by calcification being found on the stent that had been placed there in the first procedure.  So we have implemented some dietary changes to see if that will help and he is trying to drink even more water than he had before.  If this doesn't help, the doctor will discuss the option of medication to also help prevent more stones from forming.  This last time in the hospital especially brought the opportunity to be a blessing to a junior high boy in the same room, as well as with a junior high girl next door and the male nurses on the floor.  We just continue to pray that God's Word will continue to work.

Vicki only stayed for two days this time before returning home to hold the fort until going back to pick him up the next week.  She was able to have lunch and visit with the doctor's wife we have known for a very long time. Mrs. Ureyama came to be with Vicki while Ken was in surgery.  Vicki started to bow her head before lunch to silently pray but Mrs. Ureyama said, "Oh please pray out-loud and I know you want to pray for your husband, too". She also gave Ken a card with part of Psalms 23 and the Lord's Prayer hand written in English on it. What a blessing to continue to have opportunity to reach out to those we know and have come and gone from Teshio or the area.

That is one of the things that comforts us when the 'tenkin' (transfer) system in this country takes away those that have come into Teshio with their job.  That happened this past Sunday as we got the call from one of our contacts saying her husband had been transferred out of the Teshio police department to Sapporo.  We have come to care much for Mireille Fukuda and her husband and cute little baby boy and it was hard to receive that phone call. When writing her a note about it, she said she knew "God had a plan even in moving them back to Sapporo" and she would rely on that plan and meanwhile, to please always call them when we come into the big city even to shop at Costco because if she could, she would go there to meet and see us!  Her heart has not accepted the Christ of her salvation yet but we pray the continued opportunities through contact on Facebook and visits when we can will still bring about that event in her life.  Vicki said Mirei's comment on "God's plan" brought her out of her pity party quite quickly.  

Another bittersweet event this month was an answer to prayer that also brought about the end of a 14 year 'era'.  Since 1997 we have had two outlying buildings in Enbetsu and Horonobe.  Mr. Shimizu and Mrs. Tokumaru are both salvation testimonies of the 'outreach' of that work in Enbetsu.  In August, the owners of the land we had the pre-fabricated building on asked us to either find a new place to put it or sell the building as it had been about 9 months since we even had English classes held there.  So we sought another place to locate it but the Lord did not answer that prayer.  Instead He chose to find a buyer for the building.  Ironically, Mrs. Tokumaru was the one who helped in that endeavor.  When the transaction took place she said, our oldest daughter was the first student in that building (and that was how we got to know the family and eventually Mrs. Tokumaru started coming to services) and my youngest daughter was the last student in the classes.  We pray though, that the witness of God's Word will still go forth through various means and our desire to reach that community not wane either.

We are still working at getting our main prayer letter computer put back together after having it worked on when it crashed. We hope to be able to get out 'instant' needs and regular prayer letters to everyone in the near future.  Working through finding the email addresses as well some place in the memory banks of the computer but if you want to make sure we have a current email address to use, please send a note with the desired email address (churches and individuals) to or
We would like to ask for special prayer for a mission's conference we will be taking part in at Yokota Baptist Church the 24th-28th of this month (September) and then reporting to a smaller work at Lighthouse Baptist Church 9/29-10/2.  We really want to be an encouragement to these military churches and help those that are here in Japan for our home country also see the need of the people around them. We will be taking part in music, preaching, our presentation and fellowship with the believers. We have met several military pastors who were originally called to the field they are working when they were stationed in that country. May God call from these churches as well, those willing to minister to the dear people of Japan. We praise God we are able to fly out of and back to the airport just an hour away from us instead of further away so that is a great blessing. (afternote: don't know who was more encouraged, us or them but we truly were blessed to be with the folks of Yokota Baptist Church and Lighthouse Baptist Church!)

Prayer Requests:
1. baptism of believers; salvation for their husbands and families
2. new contacts to begin Bible study
3. for Miss Tsuzuki (comes Sunday evening) to have a heart  understanding of her need of Christ. She seems so close but we want God's timing and not ours--that would have been months ago!
4. Ken as he works by himself to winterize the deck and area--for continued strength and healing
5. Praise that Vicki's eye continues to hold steady. Also will be consulting the eye doctor to see if her eye prescription can be made here in Japan.
6. For the people of Japan to know that there is hope in Jesus Christ, especially those that are still displaced in home and jobs due to the tsunami.  For Christians to be bold in reaching out to these people and all around us.
8. For the Bible study on Monday nights in Horonobe and for the continued witnessing opportunities that take place each week especially when Ken is in the schools.

God bless and keep you,
Serving Christ Together,
Ken & Vicki Mansell

Just a Prayer At Night


The earthquake and tsunami that walloped Japan left much of its coastline ravaged, but left one thing intact: the Japanese reputation for honesty.

“The fact that a hefty 2.3 billion yen in cash has been returned to its owners shows the high level of ethical awareness in the Japanese people,” Ryuji Ito, professor at Japan's Yokohama University said. “These acts of integrity are simply reflective of the culture.”

Doing the right thing doesn't also just end with the people who found the money. Japanese officials are working tirelessly to track down owners and return safes and other valuables.

In the five months since the disaster struck, people have turned in thousands of wallets found in the debris, containing $48 million in cash.

More than 5,700 safes that washed ashore along Japan's tsunami-ravaged coast have also been hauled to police centers by volunteers and search and rescue crews. Inside those safes officials found $30 million in cash. One safe alone, contained the equivalent of $1 million.

The National Police Agency says nearly all the valuables found in the three hardest hit prefectures, have been returned to their owners.

"In most cases, the keyholes on these safes were filled with mud," said Koetsu Saiki with the Miyagi Prefectural Police. "We had to start by cutting apart the metal doors with grinders and other tools."

Determining who the safes belonged to, proved to be the easy part. Saiki says most kept bankbooks or land rights documents inside the boxes, containing their names and address. Tracking the owners down, was much more challenging.

"The fact that these safes were washed away, meant the homes were washed away too," he said. "We had to first determine if the owners were alive, then find where they had evacuated to."

Saiki says Miyagi police fanned out across the region, searching for names of residents posted at evacuation centers, digging through missing person reports at town halls, sorting through change of address forms at the post office, to see if the owner had moved away. When they couldn't find the documents, police called listed cell phone numbers, met with mayors or village leaders to see if they recognized the names.

It is truly wonderful that the Japanese without realizing it, follow a biblical principle:
...Woe to him that increaseth that which is not his!...(Hab. 2:6)

Now we pray that they can come to know the Heavenly Father who provides every need even amongst disaster:
But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.   (Phil. 4:19)
May honesty be a part of every day!