Where does your inspiration come from when the coin roles on the side that you never expected?
To whom do you run to, when the world feels heavy?
Where is your shelter when it rains pain?
Kumamoto is a place that was hit by a heavy earthquake two years ago. Houses were uprooted, lots of life buried and so much property lost.
I don’t know how you imagine this, but this is total darkness. Something unexpected, unplanned that hits you so bad and you lose everything and you are no where.
I believe this is not alien to most of us as we have had different stories that leave us lost and wandering in the dark.
This reminds us of a man called Job, who had paradise and he was hit so hard to a point of desiring for death. What did he do? In the midst of so much negativity and pain, he held up on a hope that built him up to a double paradise than he had before.
We were privileged to carry our story of hope to the souls of Kumamoto.
A story that’s full of Signs & Wonders of God’s love that has uplifted us from our darkened past to the light we see today. That’s why with so much confidence today we sing We won’t go back to that pain because we have found sonship in light and we are no longer slaves of the dark.
What has lifted us is the hope that we bring to this land that is still haunted by a calamity. We thank God for such an opportunity of reaching out to those around us with the love of Jesus Christ.
“Life is full of sparks of inspiration, our reception either lights them up or dims them.
Two concerts of Signs & Wonders in Kumamoto have inspired and motivated so many souls that witnessed and heard the stories it carries.
One in tears spoke to the pastor that, “ I had given up on life because I was tired of trying yet everything makes no sense at all, but on hearing the testimonies of these children, I feel ashamed to have given up. I Am very encouraged…. tears ….”
Well this is just a notch of so many other testimonies that people had after the concerts.
This is our confidence, knowing no matter what we see or go through we will not be shaken but forever hold unto the promises of our Heavenly Father.
Pastor Yoji Nakamura’s testimony
He lost his mom to cancer when he was really young and he wondered why it had to be him,
He lost his dad after a while on a mission to help out with the people who had suffered an earth quake in northern Japan.
Through all these traumatic experiences Pastor Yoji found a friend and His name was Jesus.
He married a very beautiful woman.
Then two years ago an earthquake came and struck Kumamoto so bad that so many lives were down and helpless. He narrates that, “As I took a drive around the town I couldn’t help but shed tears as I saw the ruins and the tears of so many souls. I asked God why He was letting that happen. As I saw the people that lost their property and housing and family, I couldn’t believe that this was happening but I tried to stay brave as there was no time to cry but to stand up above all the fears and be the hand that people needed at that time.” He further says that what gave him courage is listening to Christian music because God spoke through them to his heart and felt the love of God that made him shed tears as he drove.
“Even when the way goes through Death Valley, I’m not afraid when you walk at my side. Your trusty shepherd’s crook makes me feel secure.” Psalm 23:4 MSG
Yoji and other Christians at that time started a group which is today known as kyushu Christ disaster center that helped people with basic needs and gave people temporary homes to stay in. They became famous for their help and that every person used to call them “Mr. Christian please help me.”
He says, “They never preached Jesus’ gospel in word but in deeds and many people started to fellowship with them because they felt such unconditional love that they needed to be apart of.”
Someone said that actions speak louder than actions. A little a bit of love in action is a mark that can never be erased in somebody’s life. Today, we encourage you to reach out and touch those around you with the love of Jesus.
We drove away with so much joy because we knew we had run our race so well. Kumamoto was blessed and so were we.
The journey to Okayama
What a beautiful world we live in! Our eyes can easily get so used to the beauty around us that we can’t see it anymore. When you get to the world out there from you and see the beautiful nature, it will tell you how great and mighty our God is the creator.
We had a few stops to relax but one thing that never did the whole journey was our eyes. We took a few pictures because memories are found in moments.
After nine hours plus of travelling, we found a home worthy of the long journey. What made it home is not about a fancy look but the hearts that waited with love joy and comfort. In a blink of an eye, everyone’s energy was motivated. Laughters are seen on our faces but joy is the comfort and peace at heart and it will always be felt. We thank God for joy that surpasses all human understanding.
Children signed their autographs on the signposts of the concert that am yet to talk about and after a very special meal awaited to bring our stomachs inner joy.
We visited a couple of schools and had activities with them like sharing cultural knowledge, playing games, singing and dancing. Shikata Elementary school, Asahi Higashi Elementary school, and Kyokuto junior high school were the schools that we shared our story with.
Choir at Shikata elementary school
Choir at Asahi Higashi Elementary school
Choir at Kyokuto junior high school
Choir on air
Surely the love of God shall be echoed to the ends of the world and we are so blessed that our sound is among those sound waves of hope and light. We live to maximize every opportunity that falls in our hands as long it transforms a life to the beauty of the love of God.
The biggest audience in Asia so far for choir 88
On Saturday 3rd, more than 1600 people sat in this arena of Okayama Budokan to listen to the sound of signs and wonders. Wow can you imagine the touch of hope in all these hearts? Glory to God.
Thanks be to God for Riverside Church that organised this event. They surely advertised this concert with excellence and unselfishly also including the support of other churches in Okayama. They wrote a very nice magazine about Watoto which fully opened up every information about Watoto and we do.
This was given out to everyone who came for a concert for free and truly it caused so much influence as people were so touched with the story we carried.
What does this our experience speak to you?
Wherever you are or whatever you are going through, our Heavenly Father is so mindful of you (Psalm8:4) that when you call on Him, He will be there to save you.
“For “whoever calls on the name of the LORD shall be saved.” Romans 10:13 NKJV
Call on God today.
Our journey is still on and it’s only getting great and beautiful, find out where we will be if you in Asia by going to Watoto.asia.com. Don’t forget to follow our blog for more beautiful and amazing stories but more so invite your friends to enjoy this life transforming story.
GOD BLESS YOU