O God, Japan!

"O God, Japan!" The 9.0 magnitude earthquake and thirty-foot tsunami that decimated northeastern Japan’s coastal cities (just as spring break began here on campus) is not only the sixth strongest quake on global record, but is also the most costly natural disaster in earth’s history. However, it is the human toll that has broken our collective heart. Born to missionary parents in Tokyo and having spent the first 14 years of my life in the Land of the Rising Sun, I have felt the anguish of displaced Japanese who from afar have wept over the numbing television and computer screen images streaming out of the devastation. Haven’t you cried, too? How can we not, when this land of stalwart, industrious, orderly, polite and gracious almost to a fault people collectively cry out to their gods—to anyone who will listen, really—their unabashed pain and sorrow? In California last week with my mother, I stared at the black and white front page newspaper photograph of a Japanese woman sobbing over the lifeless hand of her mother, protruding from the tsunami wreckage of what was once their home. Doesn’t God weep with those who do? What can we do, we who returned rested from our break to face the glory and joys of a new springtime across this campus? We must do something, mustn’t we—if we would not fall victim to what psychologists describe as “frozen emotions,” deep feelings prompted by television images, but never acted upon? You may give on two fronts. ADRA International (the Adventist Development and Relief Agency, now headed by our own Rudi Maier) has mobilized its disaster response team in Japan to the crisis centers. ADRA Japan is coordinating its relief efforts in evacuation centers with the Japanese Department of Social Services. You can make your gift, as I did, at www.adra.org. Just click onto the “Japan Quake” banner when it appears and follow the simple directions. If you prefer to talk with an ADRA representative, you may call 1-800-424-ADRA. A second front of this disaster is the damage sustained by our church in Japan. If you would like to contribute to the church’s rebuilding efforts, you may send your gift to the North American Division of Seventh-day Adventists electronically at https://appeal.nadadventist.org/Japan, or you may make your check payable to: North American Division, Attn: 2011 Japanese Earthquake/Tsunami Fund, 12501 Old Columbia Pike, Silver Spring, MD 20904. But there is a third way we must all respond. It is the simple prayer, “O God, Japan!” One hundred-sixteen million people—who celebrate births and marriages with a Shinto priest (the unique Japanese religion of animism, praying to the spirits of the deceased) and who are buried by a Buddhist priest, but who are otherwise secular and without religion or faith—surely the Savior of this world longs to breakthrough to this people where only one half of 1% are Christians. “O God, Japan!” Won’t you join me in claiming this promise for the Land of the Rising Sun? “But to you who fear My name the Sun of Righteousness shall arise with healing in His wings” (Malachi 4:2). Isn’t that incredible? Could it become a prophecy that one day the Land of the Rising Sun will truly become that—the land upon which the Sun of Righteousness will shine down his healing grace and saving power? “O God, Japan!” We must pray. And we must go.

Comments

My husband and I's hearts have been bleeding watching and reading of this unimaginable tragedy that is unfolding and will continue to for these people. My husband has a friend who lives there and reading his Facebook posts is very real and very sad! We feel helpless to help, and yet we are not. A friend of mine and I just today have started talking back and forth about how could we have a bake sale to raise money for the aid in Japan. Surely our church PMC could band together and bake and buy goodies to raise much needed funds for the desperate situation. We need to be Jesus hands, and Jesus feet. If anyone would like to come on board and help let me know. My email is: jodineazzopardi@yahoo.com.au And while we finds ways to help, lets pray!

Dear Father you love each and everyone of us humans and weep with us in these terrible times, so many suffering so few to comfort them to whom do they turn to if Christ is not central to their belief. O God remember them please. Give us the compassion Jesus has to feel and act for our brothers and sisters as well as those who do not yet know you and your marvellous love. We pray this day for this. Strength and courage to all. God Bless

I am a nurse and couldn't help but think of the broken heart syndrome that I have read about called "takotsubo". The heart is damaged or broken by stress. On echocardiogram it resembles a Japanese octopus trap or "takotsubo". I have added a link to info about this medical condition. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Takotsubo_cardiomyopathy

Well put Pastor.TV and other media have hardened our hearts including mine.I join you in praying for the land of the rising sun.may God provide relief and quicken our love and passion for his word.may He speak to us in a small still voice. "O God,Japan"

We must remember that every disaster where people are involved such as the one in Japan is an opportunity for each one of us who claim to be a Christian to do whatever we can to help and show the love of God. "With such sacrifices God is well pleased"

Thank you so much for the two place above that we can send money to support the efforts in Japan. I had been asking God where to send the money and this is an answer to prayer. Thank you!

My heart cries and tears pour to see the few glipses into the reality, available via media, of Japan's human devestation. My heart is broken and heavy. I, too, cannot imagine the anguish our Saviour experiences, in our feeble comparisons, all the while longing to be received and bonded in the heart of each hurting person, bringing a full comfort that only He can bring. We are His hands and feet. Yet I struggle with the concept of traveling to Japan and helping because of the remaining hazards to health and life! Ceaseless prayer for the people there is important and for us to go. What a witness the retired NY firefighter is, by using his own funds and flying over to dig in to find people. Who is called to go? Christ sacrificed everything. Can we really serve as He? My prayer is that we will be in tune to His persoal call and not hesitate to act specifically on it in the way He leads, be it b more donations of money or of self. We can trust Him, our loving Saviour, Jesus. Just give more. We can be thankful He provides everything for us to do so.

We can't help but contemplate in absolute astonishment the devastation that has beset this country....perhaps our greatest contribution, for those of us who cannot make the physical journey, is to pray for the souls of those who survive, that in someway they may be enlightened and be told about the salvific life and death Our Lord Jesus Christ. May God preserve and protect them...let us keep them in our prayers....

Pastor Dwight, It's Sunday evening MST and I just finished watching your opening sermon on the "Earthquake" series. What a powerful sermon and the message an eye opener. My wife and I ache for those people in Japan. What devistation and so much innocent life taken. All of heaven was aching as well. We are at the brink of the Lord's return ( Hallelujah )! Matthew 24 sure comes to mind here as a reminder that this cannot go on for much longer. I will pray for your " New Perceptions" as well as praying for the people of Japan that they may see God's love for them through your ministry and to those who venture over to help. May God continue to lead your ministry as you continue to serve Him and the university. I miss PMC, but thank God for your website, so that I'm able to watch your sermons online. Tom Lechleitner ( tjlechleitner@hotmail.com)

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