Japan Updates #15 – #11 Tohoku Earthquake 2011

April 14, 2011 Japan Disaster Update

*66 trucks sent north as of 3am this morning
*Son Danny’s 5-minute relief team video below, with his comments at the end
*Now, from relief work to church planting, from SPRINT to MARATHON

*66 trucks sent north as of 3am this morning
As of today (3am departure) God has enabled our MTW network here of missionaries and our MTW-connected churches to send more than 66 trucks and vans to the devastated areas up north with supplies, hot meals, Japanese and missionary hands to give the supplies, wash people’s feet, shovel sludge from their homes, etc, all in the name of Christ. Whew! What a month!

*Son Danny’s 5-minute relief team video below, with his comments at the end

Danny led our first short-term team from the USA that came to help.

*Now, from relief work to church planting, from SPRINT to MARATHON

Giving the gift that keeps on giving, a vital local church!
We gave much water and food. Now to “give” (plant) churches that will give Living Water and True Food that does not perish (John 6:27) every day all year for years.

As we move from relief work in the name of Christ to more intentional evangelism and church planting, pray for us as we seek God for -

WHERE? (there are 300 miles of coastal devastation); where should coming teams focus?
WHO? should be redeployed, and what new Japanese workers and new missionaries will God raise up to share the good news and plant new churches in these areas we have seeded?

With much thanks for your prayers, your gifts, and your partnership in the gospel,
Dan (for Carol and the kids)

——
April 2, 2011

* 38th truck sent north yesterday
* Plans to feed 2000 people hot meals Sunday & Monday
* Looks like over 20,000 Japanese have died? Our hearts ache.
We must remember and ache over the 32,000 hopeless Japanese people committed suicide last year.

* How will all this lead to church planting that gives True Bread every day (John 6:27,35)?

MTW teams/related teams (Nagoya, Grace City Tokyo, Chiba) have now sent 38 trucks and vans of supplies/helpers north. We are tired, but thankful we can help. Please keep praying with us for our witness to the True Bread as we give out food, and to the Living Water as we give water.

We are especially praying and seeking God for how He might use this to start churches that give True Bread and Living Water every day all year long. The gift to Japan that keeps on giving! A vital, alive, growing, reproducing church. To do this we need workers for The Harvest. We have no PCJ churches or MTW missionaries church planting in the affected areas (there are Reformed Churches and two OPC missionaries in the area, and other churches/pastors we are partnering with). Pray for God to raise up Japanese and missionary church planters for a new church planting effort in Sendai and affected areas.

Our team, Oyumino Church, and Grace City Church Tokyo will work together Sunday and Monday in Ishinomaki (devastated city north of Sendai) giving out 2000 hot meals (quite a job) and giving out supplies in a street store in neighborhoods where most people are living on the 2d floors of their houses. Oyumino Church and our team are following the lead of our Grace City Tokyo Church partner in this. They have been very creative and energetic in their efforts to help. A Tokyo restaurant owner is taking the lead to cook and feed 2000 people a needed hot meal from the back of one of our trucks (500 people in 4 locations over 2 days) while others on the team give out supplies from blue tarps on the ground in a “street store” that we have found effective. Teenagers from our church are going to hold babies, play with kids, load and unload, etc.

Thanks for standing behind us and Japan in your prayers.

Dan

—–
March 28, 2011

We appreciate your prayers for us, our team, our churches, and for Japan. God has been faithful. We look for Him to do a new thing in Japan.

We leave at 5am tomorrow (3/29) in a 6-vehicle caravan for Sendai and points north. We are taking supplies and workers to help with recovery, and to show and tell of the love of Christ. We have made many partnerships with local churches and also local government officials these 17 days. Tomorrow and Wednesday we are particularly praying that God will lead us as to future ministry and church planting opportunities in the affected regions.

Please forgive me for not getting these to all of you. Carol and I have been absolutely overwhelmed. Many have prayed and asked about us in an email tsunami that we have not had time to answer. We are very grateful for your love and prayers. God has sustained us.

In Christ,
Dan

—–
IverUpdate #12: Heading north Mar. 28 6pm Jpn time

Thanks for your prayers.

We are moving from relief stage (emergency stage: water, food, and fuel to get water and food, and to flee) to recovery stage. Last will be rebuilding stage.

Son Danny is north of Sendai with a short-term team of 8 scouting places, giving out relief supplies, and helping people begin to clean up.

13 of us leave at tomorrow morning in two trucks and 3 vans to go north to Sendai and Ishinomaki north of sendai to take supplies, help people clean up their homes, and scout out future areas of service.

Pray that God clearly leads us to the places we are to serve long-term. The destruction is immense, and the recovery and then rebuilding will go on for years. Pray for God’s clear leading for us regarding where and with whom to partner. We have no Presbyterian Church in Japan churches in that part of the country, but some other solid evangelicals that we can partner with to help the region, and, Lord willing, to plant new churches.

More info is below from Sara-Beth and Maggie, who I copy on most of my emails so they can glean stuff to write updates.

With thanks for your prayers, Dan

PS Please do pray for God’s intervention in this awful reactor situation.

—–
For Dan, from Sara-Beth Iverson Noll and Maggie Iverson, a collaborative effort.

1. Donations: Moved with Thanks for the Love and Care We Have Seen for Japan.

2. Nuclear Plant and Radiation Situation

3. MTW teams Have Completed 33 Truck Loads of Supplies! We Continue to Send Teams North: The Lord has Abundantly Supplied Safety, Gas, Supplies, and Wonderful Reception with Each Trip.

4.Praying for Wisdom for a Long Term Plan and Presence in the North: Praise the Lord for Pastors and Churches With Whom We Can Partner!


1. Donations: Moved with Thanks

As some of you know, most days, Dan usually writes a quick summary/journal of his day. He usually includes thoughts from the scripture he read that morning as well as a basic schedule and a list of things he needs to do, emails he needs to send, et. Until March 26, the last time he wrote in this daily journal was March 11. This is over two weeks of surviving, little sleep and utter dependence on the Lord. In it he writes:
” What a two weeks! How I need the Lord’s strength, wisdom, power, for what lies ahead. How much I need day off Monday. On bullet train to Nagoya [for the graduation ceremony of one of his church members from CBI seminary there]. Cried a little on the train as I read notes from donors for minute man fund…”
Please know, friends, prayers partners, supporters, that your encouragement does not go unread or unappreciated. Of course there is no time to respond at present, but please know that the Lord is using you all to encourage a nation wrought with devastation, fear and darkness and through you, he brings light. Thank you so much.

2. Nuclear Reactor

Psalm 56:1 “When I am afraid, I will put my trust in you.” Granted, here the context is fear of man, but of course it is a biblical idea that all our fears, from fear of man to fear of a nuclear reactor, are nothing when we put our trust in God! Many Christians in Japan are clinging to this promise during these uncertain times.

The jury is still out on the short term and long term effects of the radiation, because they still do not know the extent of the damage in the surrounding areas. In many areas, food has been contaminated. Some days, water is contaminated, other days they deem it fine for consumption after consistent testing. Christ is over this. Please pray for belief and protection.

A Story of Praise: When radiation goes out from the source (in this case, Fukushima Daiichi), it doesn’t distribute evenly. Some places close by may have hardly any traces or elevated levels, while other places far away may have a LOT. Recently, the newspaper published a chart depicting all the cities in Fukushima prefecture and their radiation levels: The city with the second least amount of radiation was Iwaki prefecture, one of closest of all the cities tested and the prefecture where we, our team, has been working most heavily! Praise the Lord! Your prayers are powerful–please keep praying!

3. MTW teams Have Completed 33 Truck Loads of Supplies! We Continue to Send Teams North
Praise the Lord for his provision in all areas as we have sent truckload after truckload up north to help with aid. Our teams have been able to serve and love so many hurting people in the name of Christ. Those who have participated in serving and loving have been so blessed too. We see the Lord at work in the hearts of his people in Japan, and anticipate how He will grow his church in this needy place. If you haven’t been following, please take time to read some of the first hand accounts for our missionaries on the MTW website.

4. Praying for Wisdom for a Long Term Plan and Presence in the North

As the government turns its energies from search and rescue efforts, many towns now have running water again and are receiving more of the supplies they need. Still, the needs are GREAT. While the shelters usually have adequate supplies, many people who have returned to their neighborhoods to clean up their homes and to avoid the spreading disease in the shelters have nothing. Stores are closed and the lack of fuel prevents supplies from reaching most of these neighborhoods in the north. There is so much cleaning and rebuilding that needs to happen, and there are so many hurting from lost loved ones, lost homes, lost jobs. The task before the church in Japan is enormous and we need wisdom as we seek to know how the Lord would have us serve. These are the early stages of planning whole new ministries. Dan is realizing that he won’t “get back to normal”, but there will be a new normal in their ministry in Japan. The Lord continues to bless and build great partnerships with other missionaries and Japanese churches. Even in the midst of this devastation, God is working and we eagerly anticipate what he will do.

We also have many teams coming in the near future. So many who love Japan have responded to this disaster by coming and bringing others with them. Please pray the Lord would lead the long term missionaries who welcome and direct these teams, and that these teams would be used to full capacity for the glory of God in Japan.

Thank you for reading this far!

Blessings,

Maggie and Sara-Beth for Dan

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