Sunday, September 13, 2009

for those who don't know:

my story… This last spring, upon approaching graduation from college, God put on my heart the desire to use my construction skills to serve others overseas on a short term mission’s trip. I had no idea how, or where, or who with, or what exactly that would look like, but the desire was definitely there. So I turned to the same place everyone turns to when they have no idea where to start, Google.

I started scouring the web for different mission’s organizations, finding hundreds. I began narrowing down my options by checking the doctrinal statements, ensuring they had a need for my skill set, and that a trip a few months in duration would be possible. After much work I narrowed the hundreds down to several dozen. Now what? I was still overwhelmed by the number of options.

I went to the Lord in prayer, asking for wisdom in my choosing where I thought I should go. He immediately pressed upon my heart, “Nate, you’re trying way too hard to force this trip to happen, to make a decision using your own logic and understanding. Why not sit back, relax, and let me guide you like I have so many other times in your life.” So I ended my search, submitting myself to His will and His timing, knowing fully well He may just want me to remain in Bloomington.

After about two weeks of not pressing the mission’s trip issue but just finding contentment in where the Lord had me right then, I felt God’s guiding hand. My mom mentioned that a missionary had stopped by the church office and had mentioned a need for carpenters where he had been serving in Japan. I took that as my calling, got in touch with that missionary, and now, after several weeks of emails, filling out forms, and even a four day training session in cross-cultural missions, I’m heading to Japan. So the project described below is the one God chose for me, and I’m excited to discover why.

the details… I will be working in Nagano, Japan with The Evangelical Alliance Mission (TEAM). They have a resort/conference center there that is used to house missionaries attending language school, host TEAM conferences, and as a place of retreat for Japanese pastors. I hope to support and encourage the missionaries who use these facilities by remodeling cabins at the resort that are over 40 years old and in need of major renovations. I plan to depart on October 6th and return December 22nd, allowing me to get in almost three months of work.

I invite you to join with me in this assignment by supporting me with your prayers and encouragement.