10 Years’ Anniversary from Baptism

It has been 10 years since I was baptized at TBC. When I first came to church, I was afraid of people and I couldn’t talk with more than a few people. However, when I accepted Jesus as my Savior and was baptized, my heart that was afraid of people became light. I could talk to many people now and had to be stopped to talk so much because, people say, I am very talkative.

I was involved in many church ministries and evangelistic activities voluntarily. One day, my back that I had hurt before became worse during an evangelistic activity outside, and I could not continue doing all of the activities at all. So I limited the number of my activities and concentrated on a few things: such as attending worship service, small group study (Every time), Bible study outside (when possible). Right now, I attend and serve in TBC Tachikawa worship services and live in Hachioji under the financial support by the government.

Although, it was impossible for me to apply for the governmental support by myself, God, through the Holy Spirit, provided helping hands to me. I received the grace of God, and was able to receive the governmental support. Because of that, I was able to go to many places, study the Bible with many homeless people, and also have fellowship with them.

However, I might not be walking in God’s way rightly even now. Because sometimes I don’t seek God’s help. And other times, I don’t control my feelings and gossip, which makes God sad. The Bible says:

“Do not take revenge, my friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord.
Romans 12:19

When I speak and hear the gossips of someone, that means to revenge that person. I came to understand that it is important for us to stop gossiping and, instead, pray for that person, yet there are times that I cannot practice it. Sometimes, I cannot escape from my feelings of greed when I cannot read the Bible consistently, or when I don’t escape from sinning, although God has prepared the way out from sinning, because I don’t seek that way out. In such time, even I write down some parts of the Bible, it doesn’t come into my heart. In such a time, I pray. Even such a person that I am, I have my favorite Bible passage.

“Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God-this is your spiritual act of worship. Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is- his good, pleasing and perfect will.”
Romans 12:1-2

I don’t want to conform to the bad patterns of this world, but I want to be a living sacrifice, pleasing to God.

(Katzuhiko Numazu)