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Stephanie's Prayer Updates
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A Place of Peace in a Chaotic World
A picture of contrasts... a peaceful mountain overlooking the overpopulated valley below. A Christian graveyard, a testimony to faithful lives and future hope, opposite a Buddhist monastery, also full of devotion but without guarantees.

Please Pray For:

1. Ministries I'm involved with weekly and the people who attend:
A. ChatRoom

I asked you to pray for more Japanese students and they came! One former students came back from a two year break away and has brought three other friends. Now, pray for girls to come too! ;)
B. English Bible Time
We've invited many non-Christian friends to come to, but seen a real slump here. This time is supposed to be a precursor for a English Worship service at FBC. Pray for God's direction.
C. TOEFL Bridge
More opportunities to talk about Jesus was S-kun. The leader of the group, K-kun has been really stressed out and disconnected. Pray for him to long for peace that can only come from knowing Christ.
D. "Mom and Tot" Classes
More families needed!

2. For CG, a Chinese exchange student who often attended church related events but is not yet a believer but has not moved to Sydney. I got several replies from people in Australia about churches and she said she will go this month. Pray that she will not lack the courage to follow through.

3. For KMC program planning and recruiting. (Please read the body of the letter for more details).

4. For my spiritual growth and protection, wisdom as I deal with people and their complexity, that I would not rely on my strength but on the Lord's.


Praise


1. For Fujihara-san and Fujimura-san who both started attending our church with the encouragement of outside contacts/ reading the website. Both ladies are starting an introductory bible study with our pastor.

2. For D-san, who showed up to ChatRoom with the student I mentioned above and now goes to Brian's English class and randomly shows up at a smattering of our other activities. Pray that he would believe in Christ as his savior.
 

Reflecting on the Labyrinth

A prayer labyrinth symbolizes the Christian life as a journey with God, full of unexpected twists and turns on the path that leads us to Him. It gives space for the worshiper to pray and meditate on the Word of God without needing to worry about where one's feet may take them.

I had never seen a labyrinth before, let alone one that was constructed for the purposes for prayer. It was on the grounds of the facility of a leadership development training I attended last month (more on that in a moment). They gave us significant time to spend time with God, and I reflected on many of the unexpected twists and turns life has taken in recent years.

Living in a country that applauds needless busyness, resting in the Lord is counter cultural. Bu I think its deeper that that. Busyness also plays on our sinful pride that says, "I'm necessary, look at all I'm doing!" We all need that continual realignment that puts Christ at the center, not me. I have heard more than once that missionaries must be super-human Christians. In case you haven't noticed otherwise through the contents of my letters, we aren't! We won't be. We need you to pray for us. But I think it is the grace of God that lets His glory shine through the cracks in our lives, not our perfect efforts. That's when I recognize most its His work, not mine.
 
In Christ Alone,
Stephanie Schatz
 

EA Leadership Development Training

At the beginning of October, I spent a week in Hong Kong at our regional Leadership Development training. Designed for our team leaders and coordinators, I was really touched when my area leaders extended the invitation to me as well. I had heard many good things about it and eagerly accepted, but when I first arrived, I felt way out of my league. "I don't belong here! I don't fit in. How did I end up here?" I voiced that to my area leader, and she said "We prayed you here."

God knew what He had in store for me that week. As person after person arrived on site, I was touched that a number of them said, "This is the first time we've seen you face to face since your father passed away, but we just wanted to say how sorry we are." I was taken off guard. I expected that to happen at the next regional retreat, since it would be the place and time of year I heard about my dad. But God wasn't wasting time.

During one of the seminars, our regional leader quoted "Being heard is so close to being loved, for the average person, its almost indistinguishable." I was well loved on that week. They gave me space to grieve, process. A chance to voice questions and get feedback from spiritually mature people who are organizationally above me, but are willing to walk beside me. Time to consider the future and take a step back to look at what I'm doing now.

I wish the photo at the top was not of the grounds of the facility we stayed at, but for security purposes, I can't post a picture of the dear faces that came to mean so much more to me during that week. I'm grateful for the gift of getting to know others within our org better, and to walk with them for the duration of the two year mentoring program.

KMC: Survey Trips and Program Development

Bo Bissell, pictured left, visited our team for five days in October. He's considering long term work with either the Hiroshima or Fukuoka team. Both teams would love to have him, so pray the Lord gives him wisdom in this decision.
Not only did we introduce Bo to our team and life in the city, we gave him an opportunity to attend some of our ministries as well. It was nice to have another foreigner helping out at ChatRoom! A fresh face always brings more excitement to the group.
But life is not all fun and games (though those moments usually make better pictures!) Brian Tom and I are working on documents for the Kyushu Ministry Center, beginning with Pre-field, Orientation and then on to two years of curriculum. Obviously that won't happen over night. We've received a lot of good input from within Pioneers and OMF as well, so pray for us as we hack away at this gigantic undertaking.
Special Prayer Request!
I'm looking for 20 of you to specifically pray for KMC. We are still very much in the beginning stages, but we need prayer for future teammates who will help run KMC, future missionaries who will go through the training program we're writing, facilities, etc. Would you commit KMC to prayer?

TOEFL Bridge

Formerly, I referred to this group as ChatRoom at Fukudai, but somewhere in the last several months the group had a name change.

Please pray for these young university students. Two weeks ago a few of us ate dinner after the meeting, and one young man shared that he's been attending an English class run by people who "like the Bible just like you!" Through a long conversation, I figured out that its a group run by the Navigators. Pray for more opportunities like this to speak the truth to him.

And just for a bit of fun, if you want to hear me speaking Japanese, check out the advertisement we made as a group: https://drive.google.com/open?id=0B62j6I2qHGquRHlUeGJm NkZpU29WYzFLcEJWOTVkVjhEV2tr&authuser=0
English translation of the script: "You've been studying English since junior high, but its boring to always study from textbooks. But English doesn't have to be boring! If you want to take TOEFL (an exam to enter English university programs) but just aren't at that level, why don't you use TOEFL Bridge? Just like the avatars (on the site) your English ability will grow! Through TOEFL Bridge your world will expand. Join TOEFL Bridge!"
Fukuoka Bible Church's annual church picnic. This year we took our obentos (lunch boxes) and played some games in the park next door. As I was packing up, I ran into one of Cindy's former elementary-aged English students and his sister. We had a nice little chat. Hopefully they come to our upcoming outreaches again soon.
Copyright © 2014, Stephanie Schatz All rights reserved.

My Japan mailing address is:
Kanayama Danchi 51-504, Jonan Ku, Fukuoka City, Fukuoka Prefecture, Japan 814-0114
〒814-0114 福岡県福岡市城南区金山団地51棟504号

My Canadian mailing address is:
14341 Cheslatta Rd
Burns Lake, BC V0J 1E0

Team Website:
http://www.pioneersjapan.org/fukuoka/

Church Website:
http://fukuokabc.org/

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