The story of this lady was amazing. She lived just 1.5 kilometers from the ocean (about a mile) and the tsunami took everything.
Soon after, the gentlemen standing next to her, started a house fellowship not too long after retiring from work. He was inspired by his church to start another church after he retired from a great career. Did it matter that he is not a pastor? No. Did it matter that he had received no significant theological training? No.
Rather, his pastor saw his gifts and invested in him for years. From the Asian Access training, he developed a plan to empower lay leaders to start churches so that they could reach the Japanese people. He knew there was no way you could reach Japan through just the clergy alone. So, he raised up several business leaders to begin starting house churches in his region.
This gentleman took up the call and when the tsunami hit, he was ready. His house was also devastated so he moved to this new location and met this lady. As she experienced his families care, concern and love. As the volunteers rebuilt her home and gave her food and supplies, she lost her suspicion of this supposed foreign religion and realized these are Japanese people who follow Jesus, not some foreign experience.
She put her trust in Jesus and today she’s a person of peace opening doors for other friends and neighbors in the community to come to Christ. To date, 11 people have come to Christ. 10 of them lost everything to the tsunami. And, the pastor, he says “Don’t call me a pastor.” I’m just as much a layperson as I was before. I don’t want the title of pastor because that’ll just put a barrier between me and the people. I see more fruit this way!
How about you? If you are a pastor like me are you mobilizing and sending people in your church to start fellowships like this leader? Or, if you are in business, why don’t you consider starting a church. These little house fellowship are far more fruitful at seeing people come to Christ than the big churches we see.
Pray about it! God could use you to start a whole new movement!