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Japan Dinner Night

During my week in California (Dec. 4th-11th), I hosted a Japan Dinner Night on Thursday the 9th. It was held in the Boardwalk room at our wonderful sending church, Community Baptist in Alta Loma, California. I knew that it was a crazy busy time for everyone, so I was extremely grateful to my friends who took the time out of their busy schedules, and came out on a school night and a work week. Each of you touched my heart deeply, so I THANK YOU for coming, from the bottom of my heart.

As I was planning this in my head, I thought to myself, "Well, it's called 'Japan Dinner Night'...but of course I won't be able to cook for all those people. Catering Japanese food would be really expensive. Hummm...I know! I'll just do a party take-out from Panda Express and call it 'Japanese'!! They won't know the difference between Chinese food and Japanese food anyway!" I shared this brilliant idea with my dear friend Sandy Glenn, who gasped in disgust and disbelief. "Whaaaat? You can't do that!!" she said to me one afternoon as I was hanging out with her at her condo. And while I was in the bathroom, she and her hubby Mike conspired to "take care" of the food portion of the evening. I declined their kind offer since I knew they were very busy, but if you know anything about Sandy and Mike, once they set their minds to helping someone, there's NO talking them out of it. They have an extreme case of SSS--stubborn serving spirit :)

To my utter surprise, they went all out on my behalf! They recruited their good friend Steven Klosno (whom I had just met the past Sunday), and they made tempura vegetables and potstickers!! Not only that, Steven, a white boy, mind you, made MISO SOUP!! Not instant...the real stuff with miso, seaweed, and tofu. I had to confess to him that even though I'm Japanese, I had never once made miso soup in my entire life. And here's this caucasian man whipping up miso soup for 40 people. Mike went out to get Teriyaki chicken, and the evening was complete with mochi ice cream for dessert. To watch my friends be on their feet for hours and hours cooking, serving, and cleaning...I get choked up just thinking about it!! I cannot thank them enough.

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After the lovely meal, I had the opportunity to share with everyone an overview of our 3-1/2 year adventure in Japan. I was so proud to share about the obedience that Zack and Ellie showed in both of their quest to be the best missionaries for Jesus. It was so neat to introduce my dear Japanese friends to my American friends...an ocean apart, but after that evening, I felt like the 2 worlds have met. I think I was able to communicate just a little glimpse of the love that we have for the people of Japan, that hopefully will lead to passionate prayers on their behalf.

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Thank you also to Esther Bauman for taking photos all evening, and to Sam Williams for opening and closing the evening for us, with your very thoughtful speech at the end. We are extremely blessed to have CBC as our sending church. Below are some photos of friends who came. Love you all!

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