2016 - September Update

Dear Family, Friends, and Partners in the Gospel,

Another Autumn has arrived!  We love this time of year and feel blessed to enjoy the change of seasons in Iowa.  We have only one month left in the States before our return to Japan, and we are continuing to plan for the coming year.

Family Time at Lake Okoboji

The year ahead promises to be full of changes in team, ministry, and family life.  Our team has grown from seven to ten members, and we are now in the beginning stages of planting a church in the Waseda area of Tokyo!  We have been praying toward this for several years, and our team in Tokyo is getting ready to begin holding informal worship services which, Lord willing, will hopefully blossom into a growing church plant. Please pray for our team as we move forward in discussion and begin to work out many logistics for this to happen!  Pray for God’s guidance in the many decisions to be made.

Grandma the Baby Whisperer: Freestanding!

As for our family, our primary objective in the next year is taking full-time Japanese language classes so we will be better equipped to share the gospel, make disciples and empower local workers for ministry.  We are excited to develop our language skills and also look forward to having a more integral role in the church plant when we finish!  Though our ministry involvement will be limited until we finish language school, our hearts are still very passionate to use the gifts God has given us in evangelism and discipleship.  We’re currently looking into options for language schools and housing locations.  Finding housing that would be nearby school and the Waseda ministry is a big prayer request, especially as we balance attending classes with caring for Brooke.

This month John has attended a ReachGlobal conference in Thailand, learning about church planting and leadership alongside our teammates, while Jo Beth and Brooke spent precious time with family and friends in Iowa.   Praise God for providing safe travels for both of us and a happy reunion on John’s return!  Our calendar is filling up as we prepare to say goodbyes and pack up for the journey back to Tokyo on October 26th.  Among these plans, we hope to connect one last time with Sean (mentioned in a previous update), our mechanic’s family and a family in our neighborhood who all need to hear the wonderful message of the gospel. Please pray for these gatherings and for good goodbyes with loved ones.

Partnership Update:

16 @ 50 still needed!

We have been praying for 50 additional individuals, families or churches to partner with us in ministry.  If each partner committed to $50 each month, our financial needs would be met. Over the past couple of weeks we have seen a few more partners come alongside us financially, praise God!  We are still looking for 16 more commitments (or equivalent) to meet this goal!  Would you join us in prayer?

Time with Partners: The Schneiders

Thank you for your prayers, care for our family and obedience to the Lord right where He has placed you!

In Him, John, Jo Beth & Brooke Lee

prayYamanote Facebook Group

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Find past updates, additional photos and more information at Jo-John.com