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"And I, when I came to you, brothers, did not come proclaiming to you the testimony of God with lofty speech or wisdom. For I decided to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ and him crucified. And I was with you in weakness and in fear and much trembling, and my speech and my message were not in plausible words of wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, so that your faith might not rest in the wisdom of men but in the power of God.."
~ 1 Corinthians 2:1-5 ~

Dear Friends,

Thank you for the way you've prayed for us and encouraged us during a challenging time this year.  It won't surprise you at all to know that God has been incredibly faithful to answer those prayers, and we have known his sustaining, strengthening, merciful presence since I wrote you last.

In our last update, I asked you to pray about three big areas of concern for us.  I admitted that I couldn't share all of the details, because they're not mine to share.  However, we asked you to pray for (1) Joshua, (2) Some health issues with Gina and close family members, and (3) The closing of ANF's Nagakute Campus. 

I'll write more about ANF below, but we've see clear evidence of the Spirit's work in all three of these areas.  Joshua is doing really well right now; all of the health procedures and tests have come back with positive reports; and we've been seeing good developments unfolding at ANF.

In the midst of all these hard things, we've also experienced some strong steps forward in our overall work here, and I'll share some of that, too.  Read on!

You are all such a vital part of all of this!  I don't think I'll ever understand it, but I know that our prayers move the heart of our loving, sovereign Father in Heaven.  Every time we ask you to pray, things start moving.  Thank you for lifting us before the throne...again and again.  Thank you for loving us and the people of Japan through your prayers, encouragement, and sacrificial giving.  May God continue to receive honor through our partnership together!

Much Love,

Jeremy and Gina
Yes, that's just what it looks like - a new profession of faith!  Yu-san baptizing C-san at our Downtown Service a few weeks ago.  C-san told a beautiful story during the service.  She explained that she had put off being baptized, because she felt like her understanding of the Bible wasn't yet perfect.  Recently, she realized that she would never be perfect - but God was calling her to her rest all of her hope in his perfect son!  Everything about this photo makes us happy.  Of course, we're thrilled by C-san's new faith - but we also love to see Yu-san lovingly leading this growing, little flock!
The Recent Work
  • In March, I had the opportunity to lead a retreat for some of the Japanese leaders in our network.  I've been meeting with them during the pandemic via Zoom, but we had never been together in the same room.  So, someone suggested we spend a couple of days together in the mountains of Nagano.  It was a simple retreat.  During our time together,  each man shared some of his story and asked for prayer.  We stressed that each man could take as much time as he needed, and then the rest of us took our time praying for him.  The sharing was heartfelt and honest - they decided to really trust one another!  The praying was strong.  And our relationships grew.  At the end of the retreat, one of the men pulled me aside.  He said, "Jeremy, a few years ago, when I graduated from seminary, I asked God for a mentor that I could trust to walk with me in ministry.  I have wondered why he never answered that prayer.  This week, he showed me that he has done what I asked.  He put you in my life!"  ~ Wow.
  • Gina is continuing to meet regularly with several groups of ladies of various ages, backgrounds, and nationalities.  She says:  "...we all need safe spaces to be able to express ourselves and experience love and acceptance in Christ.  This is especially true for pastors' wives, missionaries, and their kids.  We're trying to create that kind of place for the ladies in our circles.  Places that are free of critical and judgmental words, where we can come as we are and be loved exactly where we are.  This is my goal with the ladies and middle school girls I'm meeting with.  This past month, I've seen real progress where ladies are demonstrating that they trust the group and can open up.  And that creates new space to share and receive the Gospel!  Recently, that's been beautiful to be a part of.  Pray for this to continue!"
  • Easter Sunday was bittersweet for us.  As we celebrated the resurrection, we also held our last worship service with the group in Nagakute.  As expected, that was difficult; however, even during that final service, we saw encouraging signs of new life.  About 2/3 of those remaining Nagakute families have decided to join the Downtown Campus.  So, that service has been full over the past few weeks.  A little overwhelming?  Definitely.  But it's been wonderful to worship together in a larger group and to watch Downtown members warmly receive the folks coming from Nagakute.  Last week, after the service, I talked to a Japanese man who openly professed faith in Christ for the first time and said he is almost ready for  baptism!  It's just another example of how the Spirit is always working - even through our weaknesses and even when things seem dark (maybe especially during those times)!
FINANCIAL UPDATE

As I prepared to send this email, I checked our most recent account statement - I wish I could share a screenshot with you, so you could see the long list of people who are giving toward this work.  You guys are so very faithful and generous with us, and there are so many of you!  THANK YOU!

Our account remains HEALTHY, but it's clearly declining rather than holding steady.  Will you pray with us that God would raise up some new financial partners to join us over the coming year?  And...please feel free to play "matchmaker," if you know someone who might like to hear from us!
Make a Contribution to our Support Account
The growing team!  (Top) Our April team dinner.  It's been a while since our table was this full! (Bottom Left) Welcoming Daniel to the field as the sakura was blooming; (Bottom Right) Daniel and Jessica leading worship Downtown on Easter Sunday;
For Your Praying...
  • Please join us in thanking God for how he's caring for and sustaining us as a family, even amid big challenges.  He is faithful and has faithfully answered our recent prayers!
  • We certainly appreciate your continued prayers for all three of our boys.  As I mentioned above, Joshua is doing really well; however, he also remains in a tough period of transition.  Josiah is making a strong finish to his sophomore year at ASU.  We are also pleased with the growth and maturity we're seeing in Garrett these days.  Thank you for how you pray for them!
  • Pray for Yu-san's leadership as he pastors the Downtown congregation during an important season.  He's doing a great job, by the way.  Pray for his marriage with Asako-san and for their two children:  Ikoi and Yuto.
  • Pray for Mr. X who is openly professing new faith in Christ and a desire for baptism.  There's often a real cost for that profession here in Japan.  Friends and especially family may not welcome his new faith.  So, pray for courage, faith, and a growing confidence in the Spirit's presence in his life.
  • Pray for Gina and my work with leaders/wives.  We are working with broken people in a profession and culture that encourages isolation and pressures them to hide their brokenness.  Pray for the Spirit to bring renewal and revival to Christian leaders and missionaries in Japan!
  • During May, we will travel to Spain for a leadership retreat and company-wide conference.  Due to the pandemic, these events are two years late, but they're finally happening.  This gathering is important for our unity with others in our company who are laboring in other parts of the world.  Would you pray specifically that the Spirit would lead and empower our time together?  Pray that God's Kingdom would advance as a result of our gathering for prayer, worship, and times of equipping.  Gina and I will be attending two weeks of conferences (one for leaders, and one for everyone).  They take place in late May.
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Jeremy and Gina Sink · Otana-cho 3-1-3 · Shatore Otana 402 · Nisshin-shi,, Aichi-ken 464-0835 · Japan

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