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Team from Japan Learns About Trust

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A team of young Japanese Christians recently headed to South Asia. It was my second year leading a team from Japan to this country, and I went with equal amounts of excitement and concern. I was excited about what God had in store for our team, yet was concerned about increased government pressure on the Church in this region.

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Walking out of the airport, our local partner immediately turned to me and said,

"Since there isn't room in my car due to all your luggage, you will be riding on the back of a motorcycle with another friend to get to our destination."

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In Whom Do We Trust

On the back of that motorcycle, I was taking in the sights and sounds of this beautiful city. At the same time, I found myself thinking more deeply about trust, especially how we place our trust in others. 

Trusting My Driver

I realized that, in a split second, I had decided to place my simple trust in this driver, a man I barely knew. On our first trip last year we had worked together, but I did not know his language or even his last name. Here I was immediately jumping on his motorcycle without a second thought! I was trusting that he knew where he was going. I was trusting that he would ride carefully—that I would not be thrown from the motorcycle and injured as I wasn't wearing a helmet. I was trusting that his intentions were good for me. I gave him my full and immediate trust.

Later that week, I was talking to our partner pastor, and he shared about the religious situation in his country. At any time government officials can show up and shut down their charitable work. If at any point these officials decided their charitable activities were evangelical in nature, they could renounce the charities' licenses, force their children's homes to close, and arrest them for interrogation. On top of this, it is not uncommon for religious fanaticism in their country to become violent. Adherents to the dominant religion can and do harrass Christians in all sorts of ways.

 

Trusting Our Lord

Yet, in the midst of all of this pressure, they simply trust Jesus. They are confident that He loves the people of their country and has called them to serve all of their country's citizens—even the ones who are actively persecuting them and their disciples. They trust Jesus even if everything is taken away from them, including their lives.

I was struck by how easily I trusted the near-stranger with my life on his motorcycle, yet struggle to place the same simple trust in Christ. Is my trust of Jesus full and immediate? Do I trust that Jesus' intentions for me are good and trust where He takes me? It gave me food for thought.

While I hope and believe that our Japanese team was a blessing to our brothers and sisters in this beautiful country, I know that Jesus used them to challenge all five of us on the Japanese team in what it means to follow Christ.

Please pray that the Church in South Asia would continue to trust Jesus in all that they do. 

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Robert Adair

 

Originally published on A2 Blog Centre... http://bit.ly/2dhJTgh

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