Of Carpentry and Castles
A good name is better than precious ointment; and the day of death than the day of one’s birth. Eccl. 7:1
In this our 30th year of service in Japan, we wish to honor churches and individuals who have supported this ministry during that time. This month we honor our prayer warriors. Prayer is the most valued support a missionary receives. It not only brings great power before the Lord of the harvest but it also is a great encouragement to know that there are those who faithfully pray for missionaries. There are so many prayer warriors God has given us over the years that it would be impossible to name them all. Plus, we believe that there are many that we do not know of, yet they have humbly lifted us up before the Lord on a regular basis for which we are grateful. Here we would at least like to honor three: Mrs. Clegg, Lowell Thompson and Mrs. Evelyn Gumm. All three are with our Saviour now. Mrs. Gumm, who was promoted to heaven last year, was a long time prayer warrior for us and so many others. We would see her in her favorite chair with her Bible open and her list in hand. Her husband did our support reports for many years when we first came to Japan. Mrs. Clegg prayed for us from the early days of deputation and also sent a true “widow’s mite” each month. She prayed daily for a long list of missionaries and pastors. That was her special mission. Ken’s friend, Lowell Thompson, just went home to heaven last month. This prayer warrior and man of God prayed faithfully for this and many other ministries. We knew each other in church when we were quite young. Although we did not communicate often through the years, he and his family faithfully prayed for us. Thank you, Lord Jesus, for these faithful prayer warriors and others like them, who shall receive their reward for service from you.
This month marks the last month of a school year here which runs from April to March. Ken has attended all the local school graduations and with it has brought the opportunity to talk to principals, teachers and some parents. It is hopefully also a month of spring weather returning but that was postponed quite a bit due to more snow storms. At least though, Mr. Moriyama’s job with the snow plows had slowed down enough he was able to be back in a church service with us. We were finally able to work out picking up the Filipino ladies from Enbetsu and having them with us as well on Resurrection Sunday for the a.m. service and dinner before taking them back for their dairy farm jobs. Please pray that these young ladies and Mr. Moriyama will be able to come more often.
Miss Tsuzuki remains faithful in either the a.m. or evening service with her studies. We pointedly and lovingly asked her this month if she was ready to allow the belief she has in Christ to be turned into saving faith but she said although she understands she is still fearful of being ‘different’ than her family. She needs continued prayer to come to an understanding that ‘fear’ will always be there but Christ will give strength, wisdom and grace to overcome and work in the hearts of her family as well. We will patiently await the longed for date when she receives Christ as her Savior.
Mrs. Sonoda’s health continues to be a concern yet she faithfully attends each week. We so long to see her relieved some of the symptoms which can lay her low so much of each month. Thank you for praying for her as well.
1. Families of believers to be saved and baptism of believers
2. Health of Mrs. Sonoda; salvation of her husband and father (father in poor health)
3. Bible study with Hitomi Tsuzuki-her salvation; rehab and healing of her knee
4. New inroads to be found into people’s lives and hearts; Mr. Moriyama, Miss Emi, Filipino ladies;
5. March/April is a major transition in and out with jobs—praying for those that leave to have further Christian contacts and for new folk that come in and we may find ways of meeting them
6. yen/dollar values; instability with North Korea
Praise God for 39 yrs of marriage this month with 29 of that here in Japan—
God’s blessings to us as a couple are innumerable!!
Serving Christ Together,
Ken & Vicki Mansell
Just APrayer At Night – Your evening is our daytime!
Our next door neighbor’s grand-daughter went into first grade this year–they hold kindergarten graduations. This is Ayane in her kimono for that event. Vicki also made and decorated the cake for her. We moved into Teshio when her grandmother was pregnant with her mother. Her mother, Tomomi made a profession when she was in high school but has fallen away from the Lord since she got married. We pray that we can continue to reach Tomomi and her family.