Staff Posts




Stories from our Missionary Staff

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"I don't think I believe in God anymore."

In our church there is a young girl in middle school; we’ll call her Y. Y has been coming to church since she was very young and has been involved where she can.

As Y approaches entering high school next Spring, she recently expressed to her mother that she would stop attending church once she entered high school, saying, "I don't think I believe in God anymore."

Well, you can imagine how heartbreaking this news was to her mother. In faith, her mother asked us to pray for direction and that God would work in Y’s heart. And we committed Y to the Lord in prayer.

Soon it came time for church camp. Y not only was invited, but she actually came... to our surprise! More about her in a bit...

Elementary & Middle School Camp

Our church hosted camp for the “Cookies” (middle school students-young adults’ class) and the “Lambies” (elementary school students’ class) simultaneously. It was a lot of fun to spend time with both groups and have the opportunity to learn together.

On the first day, my husband Josh went swimming with everyone while I stayed at the church to help cook dinner. Josh and I were in charge of a game-time before dinner. Everyone seemed to have a blast.

kidwell1 4x4After dinner, we held the first Bible study session. Then everyone met together to partake in a variety show of sorts. The girls in the Cookies class played a quiz game with the audience in which one girl stepped forward and the audience had to guess what that person’s favorite thing was out of two options (i.e. dogs or cats, fruits or vegetables).

Following the game, the boys came up and did a comedy skit. The Lambies made a video about the Good Samaritan in which Josh and I had a small part. Finally, we wrapped up the night by going outside to light some fireworks—very typical for Japan. The night was full of laughs and fun.

Even Y seemed to enjoy herself.

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We had to wake up pretty early the next morning to lead a devotion time before breakfast, but we were thankful for the opportunity to serve and help make the summer camp fun... and successful.

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The Power of Testimony

At one camp session, the young adult leader asked for those who had been baptized to share their stories of how they each came to make that life-changing decision. We didn't know if Y was listening or tuning out. But, in fact, these life stories of decision and surrender to Christ deeply impacted Y’s heart. Right after camp, she did a total 180-degree turn! She shared with her mother and the pastor that she would like to be baptized.

From Unbelief to Baptism

We are so thankful that God has worked in Y’s heart, bringing about her transformation from unbelief to surrender to Christ. And we pray for her continued growth as she enters high school and chooses to be different from her non-Christian peers because she now belongs to Christ.

Would you pray with us on behalf of Y?


Jessica Kidwell
Missional Partner Associate

jess headshot 1 150x150pxJESSICA KIDWELL grew up in Greenville, South Carolina and served as a summer missionary in Arizona for 2 years. She attended North Greenville University to study missions with the intention of going back to Arizona, but during her time in college, God placed a burden on her heart for the people of Japan and there was no way to ignore the desire to help the people of Japan. After marrying Josua in 2014, the couple moved to Japan in 2017 to serve with SIM/Asian Access.

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