Wednesday, December 16, 2015


". . . And He determined the times set for them and the exact places where they should live. God did this so that men would seek Him and perhaps reach out for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us." (Acts 17:26-27)

How far will God go to reach those whom He has called? Consider the case of Kumiko, a young Japanese woman. Her husband was transferred to a small Wisconsin town to work in management. Kumiko looked forward to the move to America because she had read once that Christians were not afraid to die. She did not know any Christians but vowed that she would ask why this was so if she ever had the chance. She was terrified of dying and wanted an answer.

Kumiko did not realize how interested God was in answering her question. Shortly after she and her husband settled in, a missionary couple from Japan retired and moved to the same little Wisconsin town. Upon learning that there were six Japanese families living in the area, the missionaries decided to start an outreach ministry at the local church.

On the first Sunday morning of the ministry, the missionary asked the class a question that stunned Kumiko. "Many of us live with fear. Are any of you afraid?" There was a nervous silence. After a moment, the missionary turned to Kumiko, unaware of her need. "How about you, Kumiko, what are you afraid of?" Kumiko gave her life to Jesus two months later. Her husband soon followed. Together they named their new child, Grace, after the church where God had gone to such great lengths to answer her questions about fear and death.

How far will God go to accomplish His purpose with you today? He brought a young Japanese wife and a retired missionary more than 10,000 miles so that a seeking heart might find Him. And He'll go farther, even to the depths of your discouragement or despair to find you. He'll go farther than you can imagine because He is closer to you than you will ever know.

-- Joni Eareckson Tada in More Precious Than Silver, Zondervan Publishing House, Grand Rapids, Michigan, 1998.


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