Thursday, September 8, 2016

Amazing Grace

GOD'S grace is really amazing! Last Sabbath, some of us ended up singing "Amazing Grace" three times!

Number 1: 

Gracia gave a special song during the Divine Service and towards the end of the song, everybody burst into singing:

When we've been there ten thousand years,

bright shining as the sun.
We've no less days to sing God's praise,
than when we first begun...


Number 2:

Surprise! The International Worship Group had to give a special song to welcome Mr. and Mrs. Abott, the new missionaries in our church! Nobody knew in advance so nobody practiced any songs. Well, we kinda practiced during the Divine Service so, for the second time:

The Lord has promised good to me,

His word my hope secures.
He will my shield and portion be,
as long as life endures...



Number 3:

Some of us went to "spy" the potential mission field in Nishinari, the so-called homeless church. We worshipped with 25 other precious souls. We all filled the church with praises to the Lord and together as brothers and sisters we ended the blessed worship with:

Through many dangers, toils and snares,

I have already come.
'tis grace that brought me safe thus far,
and grace will lead us home...








Sunday, August 28, 2016

Indoor-Outdoor

IT has been a happy Sabbath for our international group in two worship locations!

Our Team Indonesia seized the day and enjoyed the summer while it's here. They had a fun worship at Hattori Ryokuchi Park in Toyonaka.

Meanwhile, the Filipino group (plus Barbados, Bolivia and America) gave a special song on the combined worship. And the rest of our group spent the rest of the day with more "Revelations."








Saturday, August 20, 2016

Sharing Your Testimony

LAST Sabbath, we heard a message on the power of giving the accounts of our personal experiences with God. Like the Samaritan woman at the well, sharing our encounters with Christ to others is powerful and effective in leading others to Christ.


Reflections
Here's what a couple of our sisters think about the sermon given by Bro. Seth, "Twice Upon a Time."

"It's a timely and profound message that brings us close to Christ. Very practical, brief and direct to the point." -Dorah Momanyi

"Even if I don't know much about the Bible, I realized that I can still share God through my personal testimony. It's encouraging knowing that." 
-Emmie Okada

If you missed this sermon, you can check it out on our YouTube channel, OSAKA SDA.

Monday, August 8, 2016

THhe Power of Our Words

Our words can discourage or inspire, wound or heal, build up or tear down. An unknown poet wrote: “A careless word may kindle strife; A cruel word may wreck a life. A bitter word may hate instill; A brutal word may smite and kill. A gracious word may smooth the way; A joyous word may light the day. A timely word may lessen stress; A loving word may heal and bless." Solomon said it best: “Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruit” (Proverbs 18:21). Someone near you is fighting life’s battles at great odds. Look out for that person today. Instead of harsh words, speak words of comfort and encouragement to inspire them with hope.
Credit: Samuel Koranteng-Pipim (http://eaglesonline.us3.list-manage.com/track/click?u=a263b56490405bb83081ea113&id=c3eebcea59&e=4246cc632c)

Indeed, many things erroneously done may be fixed but such rarely applies to words. Wrong words may be withdrawn but too often their impact cannot. Like a broken egg splash on a floor, it can never be taken in a better shape as before. Watch your words for their impact go far than you can imagine. Jesting, unwise jokes and unnecessary statements are to be carefully guarded against. It is said of Christ that men wondered as His words, for he spoke so much unlike the people of His day. Many people we meet daily may forget our names, but few will forget the impactful words they heard us speak-- positively or negatively. GO bless your world with your words. 

Friday, July 29, 2016

Greetings from Germany!

WE received an email from Rolf, a German brother who visited us back in March. He sent us a group picture he had taken with us and thanked us for our hospitality.


During his visit, some of us took him to a family restaurant and gave him a  プリクラ experience (^_^;)

"Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for by this some have entertained angels without knowing it." 
- Hebrews 13:2



Sunday, July 10, 2016

Family of God

WE welcome our new brother, Katsuhito Yamane and sister, Yukiko Okazaki in our Osaka SDA family!
Let us keep them in our prayers as they embark on this wonderful relationship with our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ.

😊😊😊

Also this weekend, some of us also went to Hyogo for an overnight trip and fellowship. We had a great barbecue and our hearts were glad to be away from the busyness of the city life. We basked in God's great creation and enjoy one another's company.

Join us next time!





Monday, June 27, 2016

Fortunes of Misfortunes

Alas, how often we show ingratitude for the gifts of misfortune! How frequently we display little appreciation for sorrow, disappointment, and failure! Wrapped in darkness, delivered with suddenness, and often greeted by disbelief, misfortunes are the fortunes that can easily be missed by the proud, careless, and ungrateful. Yet, through them we acquire wisdom, sympathy, humility, and a healthy dependence on God. The gifts of misfortune won't always be appreciated, but can be converted to meet our needs. Tomorrow’s fortunes are enveloped in today’s misfortunes. Let’s redeem this hidden wealth by developing attitudes of gratitude for life’s vicissitudes (Philippians 4:4-7; 1 Thessalonians 5:17, 18).-- 
Samuel Koranteng-Pipim. (http://eaglesonline.org/weekly-nuggets/nuggets-archives/)

Saturday, June 18, 2016

Barbecue First!

THIS Sabbath's sermon is entitled "Barbecue First." Summer is here! Perfect time for some camping and barbecue. So what does it have to do with church?

In Acts 2:42-47, Paul gave us a picture of an authentic community:

The Fellowship of the Believers

42 They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. 43 Everyone was filled with awe at the many wonders and signs performed by the apostles. 44 All the believers were together and had everything in common. 45 They sold property and possessions to give to anyone who had need. 46 Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, 47 praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.
 So how do we get to experience such community? You guessed it right! You gotta BARBECUE FIRST! Relationships just don't happen. We need to spend time to get to know people. An authentic church knows the needs of its members and meets them. KNOWING comes first. We need to get to know one another. We need to build a loving and trusting relationship for God said that the world will know we are His disciples by our love for one another.

Life in Japan is fast-paced and everyone is busy--all the more reason for us to slow down and re-think our priorities. At the end of the day, God will hold us accountable with what we have done with the relationships He's given us. He will not count our possessions, or check to see what we have achieved in this life.

Our REAL Groups exists so we can fellowship, open up and get to know one another more. Let's be praying for the Holy Spirit to work in our lives and for God to give us the grace to respond. The Christian life is not to be lived alone. We all need one another. Let's take time to get to know our brothers and sisters! 

This summer, lets enjoy some downtime and maybe have a barbecue party!


Sunday, June 12, 2016

The Rough Mountains

There are no smooth mountains. If our mountains were smooth, they would be difficult to climb. So, when God gives us mountains to climb, He leaves them rough. The bumps and rocks along the way—the obstacles and hurdles in our path—are actually stepping stones in our mountain climb. Thank God for your rough mountains—your trials and afflictions, your temptations and setbacks, your disappointments and sorrows. Without these jagged sides of life, there'll be no maturity and growth, nor mountaintop experiences. Faith climbs rough mountains. Therefore, welcome your struggles and challenges. By faith, Caleb said: “Give me the mountain” (Joshua 14:12). May we dare to say: “Give me my ROUGH mountain.”

Credit: Samuel Koranteng-Pipim (http://us3.campaign-archive2.com/?u=a263b56490405bb83081ea113&id=9b91377be5) 

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Revelations and Celebrations

LAST Sabbath Bro. Freddy Ah-wan gave us a sermon on Revelations. He reminded us the importance of studying and understanding prophecy and last-day events.


We are happy to welcome Pastor Ryu and his family to our church. His two kids, Ena and Emyon got baptised. Yay!!!


We are also still collecting donations for Sis. Rosa's church building fund. Her home church in Bolivia needs our help. Please feel free to contact her.


The Sabbath ended with a fun visit to Mizuho Home Care Center where we sang songs to the elderly patients and met their staff, nurses and caregivers.



Indeed, the earth is filled with His glory!



Nagoya Exchange Program

A couple of Sabbaths ago, 10 International Worship Group members traveled to Nagoya to fellowship and lead the AY Program.

Here's the video of the mime skit entitled "The Body of Christ" and a fun movie of the Sabbath we spent in Nagoya with our brothers and sisters there.


Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Feeling or Thinking?

It’s easier to feel than to think. And many who think they’re thinking are either parroting the thoughts of others or merely re-arranging their prejudices. Thinking is hard as it forces us to analyze facts before we finalize acts. Also, conclusions based on thinking are not always pleasant. But we must think! Whenever we abdicate our ability to think, or replace it with some superficial, emotional experience, we are in danger of being deceived, deluded, or unwittingly inflicting harm on others. Martin Luther King, Jr. said, “Nothing in the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.” Let’s learn to think! Which is why Jesus repeatedly asked, “What do you think?” (cf. Matthew 18:12; 21:28; 22:17.)-- Samuel Koranteng-Pipim. 
http://eaglesonline.org/weekly-nuggets/nuggets-archives/

Monday, May 16, 2016

Determined Love

“You can ignore Him days without number. You can reject Him. You can deny that He exists. You can mock and ridicule and curse Him. You can claim His name but play the Devil’s game. You can be ashamed of Him. You can hate Him bitterly. You can run away from Him. You can pledge your allegiance to His greatest enemy. You can squander on your own gratification all His gifts to you. You can defy Him. You can portray Him to others as severe and ruthless and uncaring. You can shut Him totally out of your life. You can blame Him for all the evil in your world.... But one thing you can never do. You can never make Him stop loving you. Never” (Ken McFarland). 
“Can a woman forget her nursing child, And not have compassion on the son of her womb? Surely they may forget, Yet I will not forget you (Isaiah 49:15). You can’t stop God from loving you!Samuel Koranteng-Pipim

http://eaglesonline.us3.list-manage.com/track/click?u=a263b56490405bb83081ea113&id=b46c32b9d3&e=4246cc632c


Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Prayer Meeting

AFTER another wonderful potluck and noontime fellowship, we held our monthly prayer meeting on the first floor. 

Join us in praying for our outreach programs at Mizuho this month and at Nagashima in June!

Send us a message for testimonies, praises and prayer requests.



"And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another, especially now that the day of his return is drawing near." - Hebrews 10:25


Sunday, April 24, 2016

Stand Up, Stand Tall


“The greatest want of the world is the want of men—men who will not be bought or sold; men who in their inmost souls are true and honest; men who do not fear to call sin by its right name; men whose conscience is as true to duty as the needle to the [magnetic] pole; men who will stand for the right though the heavens fall” (E.G. White, Education, p.59). The world is indebted to people who prize character over reputation. Whose only fear is the fear of the Lord and the fear of sin. Those who value principle over possessions, power, or pleasure. Such people unequivocally say “No,” when the rest of the world says “Yes.” With Joshua, they take a stand and declare publicly: “BUT AS FOR ME....” (Joshua 24:15). Now is our time. Stand up. Stand out. Stand tall. Would you? (credit: Dr. Samuel Koranteng-Pipim, http://eaglesonline.org/weekly-nuggets/nuggets-archives/)

Have a great week. 

picture taken from: jesuschristismyhero.blogspot.com

To Be Forced

PASTOR Ryu Jonghyun gave a very timely message amidst the things that are happening right now that causes our hearts to fear. In his sermon entitled "To Be Forced," he said that Christ always comes to our rescue to perform miracles in our times of need, even though the end result may not be exactly what we had in mind. 

So we need not fear. Instead, we need to move closer and closer to God so we can clearly hear Him speak. That's the only way to have peace that passes all understanding.


Our Filipino group also gave a special number from the oldest to the youngest member! 


Of course, it's the fourth Sabbath so we got to share our Curry Team's delicious food!

In the afternoon, we watched the Revelation episode for this month. Great revelations!


God is awesomeness!!!



Thursday, April 14, 2016

Waiting



WE all have to wait for something in life: for answers to our prayers; for direction and guidance; for healing; for opportunities; for a godly spouse; for children; for many things! And oftentimes, we can get anxious and doubt the goodness of God. So what do we do while we're waiting on God?

W-ATCH God work His ways.
A-SK God for His purposes.
I-NVITE God to work in your heart.
T-RUST God to fulfill His plans.

Here is a 30-day Bible reading plan to encourage you in your time of waiting on God. May we all grow deeper in God and br blessed in our seasons of waiting.




Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Ours is Faith; God's To Do

Ours is faith; God is to do (Judges 6:15-16)
by Seth Asare Okyere
15 “Pardon me, my lord,” Gideon replied, “but how can I save Israel? My clan is the weakest in Manasseh, and I am the least in my family.”16 The Lord answered, “I will be with you, and you will strike down all the Midianites, leaving none alive.”
Background
Our inabilities, deficiencies, and insufficiencies often leads us to fear, worry, anxiety, panic, stress and depression. Not that we do not have God (we know better), but we focus too much on ourselves. Our mountains usually are our own impositions. Thus,
·       We look to self, and self has nothing to offer.
·       We look to our abilities and we realize we realize they are not enough.
·       We look to our strength, and we realize we are too weak.
·       We look to our knowledge and we realize we see too little.
·       We look to what tomorrow brings and we realize we can see only today
·       But when we look to Christ, worries vanish and faith arises.

Biblical examples
 Gideon—God can and will do it (Judges 6:15-16)
·       Initially, Gideon did not consider the Angel (suoernatural being) who talked with him. He focused on himself, strength, position and ethnic limitations—which all went against him.
·       Yet, the Lord’s response was I will be with you. It was not what Gideons was, but who God is and what He is willing to do through him.
·       Worry ends when faith in God begins. The challenge for us to assured (in both mind and heart) in the words: I will be with you, when we cannot feel it. .

Moses: God always provides (Exodus 4)
·       Moses like Gideon, was charged to lead a people, in this case enslaved Israel in Egypt. Yet, Moses response was to focus on the limitations of himself than the abilities of God.
·       Notice: he said I do not know how to speak (slow of speech), they will not believe me, what should I tell them.
·       The Lord’s response: I will be with you. Yet,
·       God does not rely on sweeping statements. He proves it. Aaron, the brother of Moses—a good speaker—had been chosen to address Moses’ limitation.
·       In fact, Moses did not have to tell what his limitation, the Lord already knew it and had made provision for it.
·       Notice closely, the appointment of Aaron was a demonstration of divine provision. God made the provision to fill a needed gap. The fear of Moses was already addressed.
·       It was just a matter of faith that God is and willing to meet our needs. Our limitations do not affect God’s abilities.
It is important to recognize that as Christians there may be struggles often, perplexities along our journey and difficult circumstances. Yet, ours is not to look at what we can do (the source of our worries) but to lean on the savior and what He can accomplish. The only thing God cannot do, is that which goes against His will.
The 19th Century Christian author, Ellen White, notes, ‘You may not understand the way in which God is leading you, you may not be filled with joy, but may be in heaviness because of temptation; but in all this it is your privilege to say, “I believe the Lord will give me the things I have asked for. I can and will trust God.” Do not fret and talk discouragement and grieve the Holy Spirit of God from you. You are to believe that Jesus knows just what you need, and will supply all your wants; so you can go on in faith, saying, “I have laid my burden upon the Lord, and I will not lay it upon any human being. God will hear and answer my prayers.” Satan may say, “You do not feel any better, you are just as miserable as ever.” But tell him you believe that God will do just as he has said, and rest your whole weight on his promise (Ellen White, Review and Herald, Feb. 27, 1913).
“If we would but fully believe this, all undue anxieties would be dismissed. Our lives would not be so filled with disappointment as now; for everything, whether great or small, would be left in the hands of God, who is not perplexed by the multiplicity of cares, or overwhelmed by their weight. We should then enjoy a rest of soul to which many have long been strangers (Ellen White, Steps to Christ, pp. 86).

Concluding remarks
·       To Gideon, it was said the ‘Lord is with you’
·       To Moses, it was said ‘I will be with you’
·       To us, it was written ‘Emmanuel’: God with us

·       And futuristically, it was declared behold: ‘I am with you till the end of the world’

Thursday, April 7, 2016

Light and Shadows

FOR almost a century, the island of Nagashima in Okayama was closed off to the rest of Japan but it had been the home of 2,000 lepers since its establishment in the 1930s. 

Once sent to the leper colony, the patients were considered legally dead and they were completely cut off from society. They were sterilized and not allowed to have any children despite Hansen's Disease not being genetically inherited.


Today, the former patients are now in their 80s but they preferred to stay on the island, having no more known family members.


We are given a special opportunity to meet the former Hansen's Disease patients in Nagashima Aiseien Sanatorium. We are thinking of visiting them in Okayama (Nagashima Island) on May 31st, Tuesday. This date is still tentative as we have to submit our formal request to visit.
For now, we would like to know who is interested in going. We would like you to comment on this post or inform Saki before April 23rd.

The fare from Osaka to Nagashima Island is about ¥12,000 roundtrip. Please contact Saki for more information.

We are planning to do a concert for the patients while they are having snacks. The details of the program is still in the works.

"As you go, proclaim this message: 'The kingdom of heaven has come near.' Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse those who have leprosy, and drive out demons. Freely you have received; freely give." 
- Matthew 10:8

Thursday, March 24, 2016

One Word, One Journal

"...But there's only one thing you need. Mary has chosen what is better, and it is not to be taken away from her." (Luke 10:42)

ONLY one! Have you discovered that one thing?

Some of us have started this year by picking just one word to guide us this year instead of a long list of resolutions. 

We chose just one word to have clarity by taking all our big plans for life change and narrowing them down into a single focus. Just one word that centers on our character and creates a vision for our future. (See more at: http://myoneword.org/#.dpuf)


What about you? What's your one word for this year? Tell us and we will give you a journal (FREE!) that you can use in your personal Bible study and quiet time. And at the end of the year, we will have a special year-end REAL Groups session to  praise God and look back how He used our one word to shape us into His likeness.

Comment on this blog post with your name and one word or tell Evelyn or Pearl or Saki on Sabbath (^_−)−☆





Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Detox

HAVE you ever wondered what happens to our brain when we check our phone all the time? Here's a link to a video that explains it.

http://www.businessinsider.com/smartphone-exposure-affecting-brain-2016-3

Technology is important and convenient and I am guilty of using my phone almost all the time not only to chat or enjoy social media. 

My phone is my alarm clock, devotional, Bible, dictionary, recipe book, camera, GPS, diary, music and podcast player and many more! It's difficult to imagine a day without my smartphone. But obviously, there is danger in depending on smartphones for many things. 

Some of us have thought of doing a 7-day smartphone detox. Feel free to join us! Tailor it to whatever works for your lifestyle. And let us know what it did for you!




Saturday, March 12, 2016

Let's Support a Church Building in Bolivia

FOR 14 years, our brothers and sisters in Alto-Irpavi, La Paz, Bolivia. One of its original members now worships with us, Rosa Mayta. In behalf of her church in Bolivia, she is seeking help for the construction of their church building. Here are some recent photos:





The congregation has 30 members and they are mostly young people and children. We are hoping we can all extend help to our brothers and sisters in Bolivia.

If you'd like to donate, please contact Rosa directly: maytarosa@gmail.com or rosamayta@yahoo.com.

"南米ボリビアの教会設立募金活動ご協力のお願い"

 

ボリビア西部海抜3650m位置するLa Pez世界で最も標高の高い都市ととして知られています。AltroIrpavi(アルトロ イルパビ)La Paz属するで、セブンスデーアドベンチストの兄弟、姉妹たちが14年間に渡り集会礼拝を続けています。

SDA大阪センター教会、国際部のメンバーでのRosa Maytaは、この町の出身で、現在大阪にある大学留学中です。今回、Rosaのホームタウンであるアルトロに住むアドベンチストメンバーが教会を建設するにあたり建設費の寄付協力お願いの依頼がありました。

 

現地では約30名のメンバー、主に子供達、、若い年代のメンバーが中心となって礼拝を行っています。厳しい気候屈することなく、メンバー達神様の御言葉を学び、より多くの達に伝ていきたいとたい意欲に満ちています。

 

現地の状況は掲載写真をご覧ください。

 

我々の援助通して、アルトロのメンバー達に少しでも安全で快適な環境を提供出来たらと思います。

 

寄付活動にご協力いただける方は、以下、Rosa Mayta直接ご連絡お願いします。

 

rosamayta@yahoo.com

 

皆様からの多くのご協力をお願い致します。