I’m “Akarin” enjoying the summer of my junior year of college.
Recently, I’ve been healed and encouraged in body & soul by attending my denomination’s online camp, counselor-to-counselor camp, and JCFN’s GiFT event.
Many thoughts came to me, especially at the first “in person” GiFT event in a long time, as we worshipped, prayed, heard a message, and met in small groups, and I couldn’t help but cry during the singing of Daisuke Yokoyama’s (DK) song “As Jesus Loved”. I was filled with a wonderful emotion and gratefulness of being loved by God, and His awesomeness.
My blog theme this month is: “I became a Christian.”
I’d like to tell you how I met God and was led to baptism.
I was born and raised in a Christian home by missionary parents. It was a normal for me to attend Sunday worship service as well as prayer meeting on weekdays. I envied my friends who went out on Sundays and wondered why I couldn’t go anywhere on that day. As a small child, I had mixed emotions, but these feelings faded away because attending worship service was a part of my routine.
Then a turning point came when I visited Japan in the summer of 2010. Once every four years, my family would return to Japan for a summer vacation to report on their missionary activities. This time, there was meeting for adults, and I attended the Church School camp for the first time. In the message at camp, I learned and understood that I had sin in my heart and that Jesus bore all those sins and died on the cross, and I prayed a prayer of repentance with the pastor and was led to faith. When I returned to Taiwan, I was baptized on Pentecost Sunday of the following year. The scripture given to me at that time was,
“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.”
2 Corinthians 5:17 ESV
The days after I became a Christian didn’t change much from the past, and I changed from being called “Akari-chan “to “Miss Akari “at church, and I didn’t see any change in my mindset. As the days went on for a long time, I began to doubt God’s existence and could only experience His presence in my faith through prayer.
It wasn’t all fun & games, and I was increasingly running into every wall that a Christian encounters, and in next month’s issue, I will talk about “Christian Starting Over.”