EC Testimony No.3:Unchanging God by Makoto Yoshihara

EC was three months after I started serving at Tokyo Onnuri. Although it has only been a short period of time, I am always painfully aware of my weaknesses and shortcomings. There have been times when this has caused me to have a mental breakdown, so I was hoping and praying that this EC would be something that would help me in my future work. With that in mind, I would like to first talk about what I heard at the EC and then how I was spoken to.

 

  1. Takumi and vessels, pot

There is always a purpose to the objects created by a master craftsman. Because God is perfect and never fails, what God, the master craftsman, creates is the best, the masterpiece. Therefore, when it is in line with the purpose of God’s creation, it can live as a masterpiece. But that does not mean that it is “”the best”” according to the world’s values. Christ is the model person and vessel, but even so, just as Christ came in a weak form, human beings are created as earthen, clay vessels, each with its own weaknesses and flaws. We only need to shine the treasure that He entered into that weak and fragile earthen, clay vessel. Because God created us with love and passion, He takes responsibility for us. He takes care of us. He maintains it.

When I heard this, I realized that I was trying to become something like a treasure while serving. I am just a vessel, but somehow I was trying to become something different. All I had to do was to focus on showing the treasure hidden inside me. All I needed to do was to be a presence that testifies and delivers God’s greatness and works. I was reminded this once again. Please pray for me to not forget that I am just a vessel, and daily know the purpose for which God created me, and live my life accordingly.

 

  1. peace

The speaker for the men’s seminar was Pr. Seki. The message was from the passage where Jesus said, “”Let us go over to the other side of the lake.”” The disciples set out in a boat, but the lake became very rough. It’s the scene the disciples said, “”Lord, help us. We are going to die.”” when Jesus was asleep. The disciples are in a great uproar. If we break off a lot of things, he basically said that, human beings can hardly have an ironclad faith that allows them to sleep with Jesus in the storm. So faith means to cry out to Jesus, what’s in your heart, what’s true as the disciples did. Not to pretend to Jesus as our “”ideal self”” or “”what a Christian should be like,”” but to cry out to Him as we are, as we really are. To be able to say, “”Jesus, you said this, but I cant believe it.”” is a great faith. It’s a great relationship. So even if you don’t believe it, just tell it to God as it is. Then Jesus will get up and perform a miracle. He will make it calm. He will make you at peace. Lastly, as his own interpretation, he suggested that Jesus, who was already tired and sleeping through the storm, and the disciples, who were tired from dealing with the storm, slept together in the boat on the calm lake after the storm passed, in the peace of that lake. When I heard that story, I felt a peace within me that I usually do not feel. And when I imagined myself sleeping with Jesus on the calm lake in peace, tears welled up in my eyes. I was reminded to always remember that image. Whenever I am not at peace in my work or in my life in this world, I want to tell Jesus my heart as it is and always imagine that I am sleeping with Him in that peace. Please pray that God’s peace will always be with me.

 

  1. the true self in God, as seen through God’s eyes

Since God is the master, since God created me, I am who I really am in the eyes of God, who says, “”You are precious and valuable, and I love you.”” But when sin entered mankind, fear and shame entered Adam and Eve. In the same way, sin brings fear and shame before God and people and makes us try to hide our true selves. So we need to stop being afraid and hiding, and break down the walls of self-protection built up by the world’s reassurance factor. He also told us that in Christ we have our true selves. The true self is the one who is in the heart, thoughts, and love of Jesus. And when we are in the Holy One, we are made holy. We need to choose that self every moment. On the contrary, the presence of Christ within us means that we are always thinking of Him and loving Him. I am inspired to always maintain that mutual relationship, to know my true self, and to choose who I am in God. Please pray for me to be able to do so.

At the end of the conference, there was a talk about talents. Each human being has a talant that is given to him or her. There is a voice that only you can hear, a world that only you can see, and words that only you can speak. Therefore, we should be faithful to the talents we have been given. Please pray that I can do that.

 

A year after last year’s EC, I am amazed to find myself working full time in a place I never imagined I would be. Last year, I learned that I was loved even though I was not worthy before God. So I decided to go before God as I am. I decided to offer up my life just as it is. This time, however, I learned that God uses me even if I am not worthy to be a servent like this. So I decied to be faithful to the talents God gives me. I am in a place where I want to offer the best I have at the time and offer the seld as I am at the time. I am grateful.

Please pray for my future work and for guidance afterwards!

 

Here are the materials from the Inductive Bible Study (IBS) that I helped with this EC. If you are interested, please take a look.

Scroll to top