Sunday, March 27, 2011

Message ~ pray for Japan

(This song is written by Sing from Trash Box Jam, the band that I talk about a lot. He also made the video. I translated this song a couple of years ago, so here is the English.)

Message (English)

hey boy, you're standing on a hill in order to take off into the sky
but you are scared, somethings not right,
you just cant take that last step
maybe you regret your conceited, empty dreams, or maybe they hurt you
even the letter addressed to yourself, written to encourage you to keep going, is knocked down

then from somewhere you can hear a song, a voice telling you not to give up
it hits you square in the back, an ache that suddenly makes it seem like you can fly...

these music and words well up from somewhere and overflow out of this body
we want to tell you, want to convey to you, want to offer to you
our clumsy message
until the voice of A Thousand and One Nights disappears
it's ok if you laugh or if you cry or if you close your eyes
we are always going to keep singing beside you

hey girl, you're standing in front of the florist's shop staring at all the colorful flowers
murmuring that no matter how hard you try, you'll never be able to blossom like that
but maybe you are a small flower in a field, just a poor, small, nameless flower
but your beloved is searching for you, so you need to blossom in all your splendor

then from somewhere you can hear a song, a voice telling you it will be ok
and inside your chest something bursts open, and it suddenly seems like you can blossom...

these music and words well up from somewhere and overflow out of this body
we want to tell you, want to convey to you, want you to help you blossom
our clumsy message
until the voice of A Thousand and One Nights disappears
it's ok if you loose sight of things, or if you mope or if you break down crying
somewhere in the world we'll keep singing

so even if you cry, it won't change a thing
understanding this, you wave your hand, wiping away the tears with a smile
take all the worries and troubles and throw them away into the trash can on the roadside
starting today, starting tomorrow, believe that you can become a different you
you are just beginning to walk, look, the sun is rising in your sky even today

this message I'm singing for you...
don't loose, it'll be ok, don't give up
you can still give all you've got, it's fine if you rest for a little while before continuing on your way
your goal is waiting for you
there's going to be unavoidable sorrow
while you are halted by doubt and hesitation
in order that you can keep searching for the strength to be yourself
this is my message for you

As I watch this video, and I notice that this slogan is everywhere lately, I'm struck by the choice of words. Pray for Japan.


Now Japan is not Christian. And most religions pray. Japanese are this funny mix of Shinto, Buddhism and modern philosophy. Shinto is polytheistic so Japanese have no problem praying to who ever or what ever. They go to shrines to pray to pass their entrance exams, or to buy protection charms for a baseball game. There are shrines dedicated to lovers, animals, and a host of other things. I'm sure if you have a need, there is a shrine or temple somewhere that has a lucky something or another for you.

But Japanese are not completely superstitious. Most people I know do these things because it's fun, or traditional, or because it couldn't hurt. I know very few people who really believe these things.

But people want to believe. Or rather they want something to believe in. Something bigger than themselves.

Japan is according to some statistic I read years and years ago, the most densely populated area of unsaved people on the face of the planet. This doesn't mean the most people, it means the most people in one small area.

How convenient. This should make them easier to access.

But Japan is also called the Missionaries Graveyard. It's so hard to see change here. People are polite and listen, and accept Jesus as one of the many other gods that are hovering around. Another nice good luck charm. Let's celebrate Christmas because it looks like fun. And Christian weddings are really pretty and in fashion, so let's do that when we get married. It's said people are born Shinto, get married Christian and die Buddhist. There is lots of movement and activity, but not so much life here. Real Life. It's not just a Missionary Graveyard. It's a living graveyard.

But here is this country, with maybe little over 1% of the population Christian, crying out for prayer.

Pray for Japan.

Pray for Japan.

Now of course I said before, most religions pray. And Japanese don't really care WHO you are praying to.

But this is an open invitation. Japan is looking for a Savior. And crying out for prayer.

Now is the time to truly pray for Japan. I'm not talking about feel-good prayers, or moments of silence motivated by pity. Half-hearted murmurings to the sky, hoping that someone or something will hear and take pity on this poor country.

I'm talking about REAL prayer. Prayer to a God who Loves Japan and who longs to gather the people under His wings as a mother hen gathers her chicks. Prayer to a God who cares more about healing the broken than perfect children. Prayer to a God who has a plan ready for Japan.

I of course care about relief of the people who have lost their homes and are cold and hungry. I care about the people affected by radiation. But, only praying for that is too small. There is more at stake than these people's hunger or bodies. Their souls.

How many people were lost!

Father, look with mercy upon this country! Save the people and call them Your own!

So if you are reading this, I ask you also. Pray for Japan. Look at Japan with the eyes of God. Pray for His will, for the salvation of this country. My long standing prayer has been that Japan will be so radically changed by God's presence that it will no longer be the most densely populated area of lost people in the world. It would instead become the most densely populated area of Light to the world. God can work miracles!

And the people are crying out themselves, asking for Prayer. It's a invitation screamed from broken hearts who have seen their brokenness.

It's so powerful because it's asked for.

Pray for Japan.

Listen to the cries of the people. Allow them to break your heart. Allow your heart to hear God's heart for these people. And Pray. Pray like you've never prayed before. As you would pray for a child dying of cancer. Because Japan is also God's child. A lost child.

Let us pray for restoration and redemption in addition to relief.



Pray for Japan.

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