The sessions today were quite varied and enjoyable, but boy am I feeling tired. Here are some reflections from the day.
It was good to focus a bit more specifically on some Japanese context issues. When focusing on the issue of ‘Clear Communication’ it was really helpful to think about some theological/Christian type words, and how we can convey those concepts in Japanese. So many concepts like forgiveness, grace, sin – things that are central to Christianity – are not really a part of the Japanese worldview and so communicating many biblical concepts is quite challenging. So it was helpful to hear ideas from others and brainstorm together.
I really enjoyed listing both the descriptions of salvation/fruit of salvation and many of the New Testament names and titles of Jesus. It was good for my soul. To reflect on all of the amazing ways that salvation works in someone’s life, the many amazing things that salvation contains. Eternal life, redemption, darkness to light, heaven, death to life, reborn, slavery to freedom are just some from the list. Lamb of God, Way, Truth, Life, Holy One, Cornerstone and so on. What a wonderful God we have! It’s like a breath of fresh, pure, oxygen to the soul to reflect on these things.
The last part of the day, and also the most challenging for me, was part of the session on ‘The Art of Meaningful Conversation’, in particular talking about how to see the world through God’s eyes. How do we use events, conversations etc to hear someone’s worldview, issues brought out by that worldview, what questions, comments, stories can I comment with, and what can I use/do to keep the conversation going if the other person is interested. It was quite difficult.
Today we learned a story from Genesis 16:2-10 and I really enjoyed learning the story, practicing with a partner, and even practicing myself a few times. I think it’s going to be another step altogether to work out how to do the stories in Japanese, but one step at a time. It’s such a good way to memorise scripture too!
Overall I’m finding it quite interesting and helpful, though it is a tiring thing, and I think with having Annie here too it just becomes that extra bit more tiring too. Annie has been amazing, and ‘Auntie’ Rowena has been looking after her during the sessions, but each time we break it means I’m not really getting a break. And evenings are hard too, as it’s not so easy for us to go out to eat with everyone, especially as Annie hasn’t been sleeping well during the day so is often exhausted by the evenings. But I am so glad that I am here, and I am so glad that Annie is here too. 🙂