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.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

September Prayer Letter

Dear Praying Friends,                                                                                
Isaiah 43:10 Ye are my witnesses, saith the LORD, and my servant whom I have chosen: that ye may know and believe me, and understand that I am he: before me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after me.
God gave us this verse as a mission call to Japan.  Today as we write this, October 7th, 2013, by the grace of God, marks the end of the first 30 years of fulfilling that call here in northern Hokkaido, Japan.  I recall on that day as we boarded the airplane out of Los Angles and we watched the lights of the Pacific coast of the United States fade away in the darkness, I silently sang the national anthem and thanked God for His calling.  In the years that have passed, many things in the United States have changed:  Economic, politics and morals have declined greatly.  There is a great need for those biblical Christians in the United States to abound in taking a stand for the Lord in the grace of God.  We are thankful for each of you that do this so that we and many other missionaries throughout the world can continue to give the gospel to the people God has called us to.  You too have a calling of God.  It is the same one we have; only the location is different.  May God bless your witness this day for the Lord.
Memories abound of God’s goodness not only here in Japan but also in His training period through the years since we got married in 1974.  Little did we know that each step we took in obedience and all along the way were part of His boot camp training time.  Helping us learn to trust in each other, walk along with each other and know that God was leading and helping us making decisions (first 3 years); leading Ken back into some schooling to finish one degree (1 yr) and at the end of that moving us to Minnesota where we were quite content in the assistant pastorate work we were involved in (2 ½ years) when God moved on our own hearts to go into full time church planting on a foreign field.  That led Ken to go back to Bible school one more time (2 yrs) to get some more training specifically in missions. While there we were involved in AWANA and jr. church, all the while seeking where God would want us to go.  It’s not an easy decision when the entire world needs the Gospel!!  Here is what Vicki wrote about our call to Japan on our 20th anniversary—
During his senior year at that time, a senior missionary from northern Japan, specifically the island of Hokkaido, came to visit on campus and tell the student body of his desire of reaching the northern rural area of Hokkaido, Japan with new missionaries where he had been ministering for quite a few years.  So many missionaries called to Japan stay in the southern larger populated areas.  His desire was to see more come north. And not only north to Japan but by a special program of new missionaries working with a veteran missionary for two years to lead them patiently through the ropes of everyday living, learning the language, and dealing with people in the difficult country of Japan. We praise God for that patient guarded teaching.
 Ken was on campus that day hearing the missionary speaker in chapel.  The campus chapel time was always broadcast on the local Christian radio station so I listened while at home.  When Ken walked through the door of our home that afternoon I don't remember which of us started talking first, but it was both of the same thing—what do you think about northern Japan?
We prayed, discussed the program, met with the missionary several times as well as several pastors that were working with him, got the counsel of our pastor and my Dad. What a blessing it was to meet and pray with him and when we asked him what he thought this was Dad's reply, "Your mother and I have been praying for several years now that God would send someone to help in this needy area.  Never did we dream our own daughter and son-in-law would answer that prayer." -----
After Ken graduated in 1981 we began our year and half of full time deputation with much fear and trembling but also joy that God had shown us his will.  God blessed and there is no way we can share all that He has done in these last 30 yrs. But this one thing we know: We fail, but God picks us up; We try and God works through us; We plant, water and pray that the seed will grow into true salvation and that the seed will not be plucked out.  That’s the way it was when we first started and that’s the way it continues. Japan is still a hard field to reach with the Gospel but we will patiently keep on planting and watering and waiting for the increase.  May we always be faithful for our God is Always Faithful and His mercies are new every morning.
Serving Christ Together,    
Ken & Vicki Mansell           Just A Prayer At Night – Your evening is our daytime!


Debris dragged out to sea by the 3/2011 tsunami arrived on the other side of the Pacific Ocean bringing unfamiliar creatures as well as concerns that invasive species will threaten ecosystems on the West Coast of the United States.

A 20-meter-long pier was swept away by the tsunami from the fishing port of Aomori, and arrived on a beach near Newport, Oregon more than a year later in June, 2012, bringing with it many species of marine life native to Japan.

Locals who flocked to see the unexpected arrival were shocked, not only by the immense size of the pier but also by the many species that had hitched a ride, which included sea chestnuts, crabs, sea anemones, starfish and oysters. Marine Science Center counted more than 90 species.

Among the new arrivals from Japan are wakame seaweed and crab species that are highly reproductive, more so than Oregon's indigenous varieties. They are considered invasive species that could have an unwelcome impact on local ecosystems and the locals tried to destroy all the specimens with blowtorches.

The debris that has already reached U.S. shores is only a tiny fraction of the total. The Environment Ministry believes about 1.5 million tons of debris were dragged out to sea by the March 11, 2011 tsunami, and the ministry calculated that about 41,300 tons will arrive over time, meaning that U.S. communities should probably expect more unwelcome Japanese sea life.

Source: Yomiuri News

 There is something infinitely worse than 1.5 million tons of debris. It is the muck that human beings carry around in their bosoms.

Proverbs 30:12 There is a generation that are pure in their own eyes, and yet is not washed from their filthiness.

The Bible urges us to get rid of the sin in our hearts.

Wherefore lay apart all filthiness and superfluity of naughtiness, and receive with meekness the engrafted word, which is able to save your souls. James 1:21

Our sin is an abomination in the sight of a holy God.
Only the shed Blood of Jesus Christ can wash our sins away.

 Wash you, make you clean; put away the evil of your doings from before mine eyes; cease to do evil;...  Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.
Isaiah 1:16, 18

Wash me throughly from mine iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin.... Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.  Psalms 51: 2, 7

Please do not put off knowing for sure on anything of such eternal importance! Accept the salvation of the Lord today!!