Amid the rubbish stands one of the most beautiful sites anyone will ever see: Springtime Sakura, better known as “cherry blossom” trees. While preparing for my trip to Japan, I look at the hard work our friends in Otsuchi are doing by helping the people that have been devastated by the tsunami that swept through their town, taking lives and tearing down many of the structures that once stood strong. But with all of the pain and suffering, there is something more powerful than death and destruction: Life!
Jesus says in the ancient scriptures “The thief comes to steal, kill and destroy, but I have come, that you might have Life and Life more abundantly” John 10:10. You may say, “Where is this Life? How can Life be present when there is so much sorrow? ” When God raised Jesus from the dead he sent His Spirit to live inside every person who chooses to believe in Jesus Christ, the Son of the living God. This Spirit demonstrates the love of the Father (God) when we love those around us. As the people of God his Love empowers us to help a neighbor living just down the street or thousands of miles away bringing comfort to the hurting. This kind of Love is expressed with more than words, it is accompanied with action, “We know what real love is because Jesus gave up his life for us. So we must also give up our lives for our brothers and our sisters. If someone has enough money to live well and sees a brother or sister in need but show no compassion–how can God’s love be in that person? Dear children let’s not merely say that we love each other; let us show the truth by our actions. Our actions will show that we belong to the truth.” 1John 3:16-18
Just like the Sakura trees showing off their display of life and beauty…the people of God are active all over the world showing this “Life” through acts of love toward mankind. “Let your lite so shine that mankind will see your good deeds (acts of Love) and Glorify your Father which is in Heaven” Jesus words found in Mathew 5:16
Thank you for your prayers as I continue preparations for my upcoming trip to Japan. Below is Pastor Guna and Jey and members of their congregation returning from their first trip into Otsuchi. They have recently returned with another team and are working to help clear anything damaged by the tsunami and cleaning the homes so the families (who are in shelters) can return to their homes. God bless them as they show the people of Otsuchi God’s love through their acts of kindness.
For more information regarding our call to Japan, read my blog titled, “Japan: Mission of Love” or go to our website at PonceChurch.com
“You’re never gonna be alone…If you feel like letting go-I’ll never let you fall…I’ll hold you til’ the hurt is gone” Lyrics from the song “Never Gonna Be Alone” by Nickelback. On YouTube alone there are have been over 8 million people that have nourished their soul by the verses from this song. That’s 8 million people that are either going through or have experienced some kind of heartache in their lives.
As I listened to the powerful words of hope, I could not help but think about how close they are to the very words of Jesus. In one particular scripture Jesus says, “I will never leave you nor forsake you” and in Luke 4:18 Jesus himself says that He has come to “…heal the brokenhearted”
Maybe you have lost a loved one and wonder if you’ll ever be free from the pain. Or maybe you have gone through a divorce and feel like you’ll never love again. Whatever you are going through the God of all Peace wants you to know that you truly are NOT alone.
You may be asking the question “How do you know?” Let me encourage you to read one of my previous blogs titled: “Girl Meets God” in it you’ll find my personal story and how I met the only one who could take my own pain of loss and heartache away. Is it possible? Absolutely! The only way the pain can continue is if you choose to hold on to it. It’s like a wound on your own body. If it is not given the proper care such as cleaning the affected area, medicating it and covering that wound with clean bandages it will not heal properly, in fact it can even get worse by becoming infected. Our heartaches and pains in life also need the proper treatment. Just like Jesus said, “…I have come to HEAL the brokenhearted…”
How? In my research when someone experiences a loss of any kind, there are emotional stages and one of them is “anger” We can become angry with others and even angry with God. Let me stop you here for a moment: The scriptures say that we have an enemy and that enemy is NOT God. Jesus says in John 10:10, “The thief (devil, satan) has come to steal, kill and destroy, BUT I (Jesus) have come that you might have life and life more abundantly” Look carefully at this passage Jesus is letting us know right away who our enemy is. He clearly lets’ us know that it is neither God nor Himself bringing evil into our lives. In this passage Jesus is teaching us that there is a thief (this is the same enemy that deceived Adam and Eve in the garden) and that He (Jesus) came to help us and deliver us from this evil and gives us His Life in abundance. If you look at the life of Jesus on the earth, you’ll see that the scriptures say “He went about DOING GOOD and HEALING all that are oppressed from the Devil”
So we can clearly see here that God is a GOOD God…and He sent His Son Jesus, giving us good things and providing a life greater than we can ever imagine.
Once we make the decision and believe the TRUTH which is God’s word, then we can begin to “let go” of the anger and begin to “Look to Jesus” who promises to do good and heal those whose hearts have been broken. There is hope my friend, just ask God to help you. Believe in His Son Jesus…He is the one who came to give you His Life…full of joy, peace and happiness…and remember, you’re “Never Gonna be Alone”