It has been one year, one year since I came to Osaka, Japan.
Perhaps since I began to watch Anime, my mind was ridiculously focus in everything that had to do with Japan itself. From liking Anime, to liking customs; from liking customs, to liking history and from liking history to liking culture. My passion for this country was so tremendous that I tried to act just like one of them. Often times I spoke with my mother and I would say to her: ‘Mom!, I don’t like to be Colombian, I don’t like my big eyes, I don’t like my blonde her, I just want to become Japanese. I’d like to have their eyes, their black hair, I’d like to wear Kimonos all day and practice their customs’. Isn’t it crazy? isn’t that so strange for a Colombian girl to become Japanese? well actually many people have said it, even I ate Colombian food with chopsticks just to practice…food that were not meant to eat with chopsticks. This would create a certain type of hope for me, a glance of what it is like to be Japanese. People would say: ‘what’s the point of eating your food with chopsticks? it does not make sense! you are in America, eat like a normal person from the west.
Well let me tell you that since I came to Japan, that little weird thing I did, helped me to eat properly their food in nowadays and not only that, by have studied about this culture before, I did not have so many culture-shocks. What can I say? I know it’d sound weird but I came with the conclusion that those exclusive moments in my life were preparing me to come to serve in Japan. God was preparing myself before hand even though I did not have any clue. What is interesting is that before I never had the desire to serve God at all, I never thought about it. Surely God can take the desires of your heart and use them to advance His Kingdom.
After haven’t seen my sister for almost two years, we had the opportunity to meet once again, not in Colombia neither in America but in Tokyo, Japan! In 2011 my sister was planning to come to Japan but because of the earthquake she was not able to come. My sister and I grew up with the love given by our parents, however when we used to live together, we did not even talk to each other or I guess care for each other.
From the moment we split, little by little we began to talk to each other and share about what we were experiencing in our lives in those moments. One day I shared with her about the best thing it could ever happen unto me, I shared about someone that could break my heart of stone, that could change the perspective of life, someone who had given me hope in the middle of this dark and evil world. I shared about Jesus. Time to time, I shared what I was considering indescribable, how Jesus was able to restore, heal and change people’s lives including mine. What it really outstands me the most is that while she was here in Japan, she was able to see God’s undeniable power and love towards us. My description of our trip is what I called an “Odyssey”. Seriously what did it not happen in our journey? I am going to share as briefly as I can because it’s kinda long ya know…
“For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities–his eternal power and divine nature–have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse”. Romans 1:20
#1 We were at Tokyo and we were heading towards the airport to take our flight for Okinawa. Sadly, we took the subway, we were running late for our flight and the moment we thought we were almost getting there, we stopped in the wrong terminal. Everyone started to freak out, we transferred to the other terminal, my sister was already losing hope, she was given up, it was already 2:55 pm, the time we were supposed to take the airplane. But I, well obviously I started to pray to my God and I said: “please, God stop the airplane or do something, maybe a miracle, you’re in control”. Although God did not have to listen to that prayer, we came to the front and I showed our passports to the lady in charge. Then she looked at her senpai and turned her eyes on us and said: you’re lucky, for the flight has been delayed 15 minutes, surely if you had come yesterday, you’d had lost your flight! Wow we seriously made it because of Him!
#2 Next day, there was a typhoon passing by and we deliberately tried to go to the beach. It took us one hour to go there and when we arrived the beach was closed and it was raining all day. I was sort of disappointed because I really wanted to go there. We decided to go to the local beach at least to see the sunset, so we sat on some stairs that leaded to the ocean, relax for a while and suddenly a little jelly fish grabbed my foot and I began to scream! There was not hospitals in the area, we went to a driver’s school that was in the corner and I started to ask for help in Japanese. They put my foot under water with vinegar to reduce the pain and inflammation. A Japanese girl came up to us and began to speak in English, she said to us that she could take us to the hospital, so we took the monorail and started to speak with her. She was so kind that even translated for us when I was speaking to the Dr. The funny thing is that the Dr. was saying to us that I was not supposed to put my foot under water with the vinegar, but it worked! it relieved the pain and inflammation. Later on we even had dinner with this girl that we just met randomly on the driver’s school. We talked about her life in Japan and how difficult is to live in this country, she described as some kind of slavery, where you can not be free, where there is not time of relaxin’, there is not time of living or enjoying this life because they don’t want to be excluded from the group of “faithful workers”.
I believed God used many people on our path, including this girl. We were blessed from them and I had the chance to speak with most of them about the hope that now I am living for. I encounter with those kind of people almost every week and if I am not able to meet them often, the only thing I can do, it’s to pray for their salvation and openness of their heart to Jesus. My sister obviously saw God in action, God revealing himself to her. I’ll keep praying for her response unto him, I’ll keep praying for her salvation and I’ll keep praying for her reconciliation with God through his son Jesus Christ.
“I am the way, the truth and the life.
No one comes to the father except through me”.