Sorry, this entry is only available in Japanese.
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.”
Hello everyone, it’s nice to meet you.
My name is Akari Hirase, a third-year student at Tokyo Christian University, and I’ll serve as an intern at JCFN until next May. My nickname is “Akarin.”
Since this month’s issue is my first, I’d like to briefly introduce myself.
My parents were missionaries to Taiwan, I was born and raised in Taiwan and lived there until I was 20 years old.
My family is my mom & dad, four younger brothers, and my dog, a pug named Kotaro (♂).
I attended a local missionary kindergarten, elementary and junior high school at a Japanese school, and high school in the tourism department at a local business high school. Due to differences in entrance and graduation times, I returned to Japan in the spring of 2020 to enter university (Tokyo Christian University; also known as TCU).
I live in Chiba Prefecture, where I’ve been attending in person classes and living in the dorm for the past two years since my enrollment. I feel fulfilled each day.
The pics are some of my favorite places at school!
No.1: Languages I can speak
Although Japanese is my native language, Taiwanese Chinese has been indispensable in my daily life, English because of my love of Western movies and music, and Korean because I want to understand Korean dramas without subtitles! I’m struggling, but I enjoy my studies.
When you hear the words “Taiwanese-Chinese,” at first thought you may think that all Chinese languages are the same. No, they aren’t. The Chinese language commonly known in Japan is Mandarin Chinese, which is pronounced with a rolled tongue. However, the Chinese used in Taiwan is different in that each word is pronounced firmly, giving the impression of being crisp and clear.
I especially like baseball, and recently I finally got to watch my favorite team play a game, and I’m hooked on watching games as a big fan!
I also like music and often listen to up-tempo songs such as dance & vocal groups and band music.
I often watch Japanese dramas, and the ones I always watch are suspense, mystery, and medical dramas. I also watch a lot of Korean dramas that are love stories, which makes my heart go not the normal “thump, thump”, but “pitter patter”.
No. 3: Eating and drinking
With the recent heatwave and my throughout my youth, my body has started to crave “light and refreshing” food, and I like it so much that I eat “chilled Chinese Noodles “for nearly every meal this summer. Any recommendations for toppings, dressings, and places to get some of this delicious food? For drinks, I like “oolong tea” which is a gentle tea to aid digestion. Eating lots of fried food, which was fine until recently, has would sit heavy in my stomach without oolong tea. (Probably I eat too much fried food (;^_^A))
I hope you have gotten to know me at little better.
I’ll post monthly, so please check in next month~!
And please keep in touch with “Akarin.”