Yu Hoshino, Candidate for JCFN Intern

After graduating from high school, I left Japan at the age of 18 to pursue university studies. I went to Hawaii as an exchange student, and in 2022, I enrolled at the Tokyo Bible Institute. I graduated from the one-year training course in 2023. During my first experience living abroad, I felt lost and stressed, my heart dried up in the face of the new land, environment, and culture. However, I started attending church, encountered God, and my life took a 180-degree turn.

During my six years abroad, I was supported by my family back home and the church family nearby. Like me, I witnessed many people in foreign countries listening to the gospel, experiencing God’s love, and believing in the Lord. My mother church, Honolulu Church, was located about a 5-minute walk uphill from the University of Hawaii, where I attended. Therefore, many short-term exchange students came to Honolulu Church to build community in Hawaii or to experience English immersion.

Through the church, I made friends and participated in activities like Youth Bible Study, hiking, and beach outings. Despite the short time, I enjoyed Hawaii with them. Such experiences encouraged me with the reminder that “I am not alone” no matter what. However, I often heard that once international students returned to Japan, they stopped attending church.

Reasons varied, including not knowing which church to attend, being too busy with life and work, unable to tell family about starting to attend church, or lacking Christian friends around. As someone who had sent off many international students, my initial thought was, “Even when I return to Japan, I want to stay connected to the church.” That was one of the reasons I enrolled in the Bible Institute. I wanted to support returning students, encourage them to connect with the church, and provide support. Such thoughts were instilled in me as I continued to attend worship services abroad.

Even after enrolling in the Bible Institute, unsure of my future path after graduation, I kept praying, “Lord, is there a burden for international student outreach? Is there any work for returning Christian students?”

“Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours” (Mark 11:24).

The path that the Lord has given me now is an internship with JCFN in California. During my studies, I was given the opportunity to participate in the internship through Mr. Shizuki Shimizu. I was anxious whether this path was truly God’s will or if it was the path He had opened. However, by participating in the EC that I had been attending every year, I gained confidence in my path.

“For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.” (Ephesians 2:10).

I decided to walk in the “good works” that God has prepared for me rather than what people expect. I firmly believed that God, who uses us as instruments of righteousness, would never use us as instruments of unrighteousness. I resolved to entrust myself to God, who uses us as instruments of righteousness, and to surrender everything to Him.

Only God knows the “good works” prepared for us. I believe that as we obey the small things prepared before us, the Lord will transform us to live by His grace. Now, the path set before me is the internship with JCFN. Stepping into a new path requires courage. However, trusting in the word of the Lord and the Holy Spirit given to us without fear, I will walk with the Lord.

 

Please support Yu Hoshino

The participation fee for the internship to be held in California in May is still insufficient. A donation of $4,500 is required, covering travel expenses, meals, insurance, rent, and activity fees (for training and service at retreats, leadership camps, etc.).

Please pray that the needs will be met, and if you feel led, please contribute.

You can make a donation through the following methods:

Check: JCFN P.O. Box 17982, Irvine, CA 92623 (Please write “Intern Scholarship (Yu Hoshino)” in the memo section.)

Credit Card: [link] (Please select “Intern Fund” as the destination.)

“Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.” (2 Corinthians 9:7)

 

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