Two years ago, my family gave up everything to run in the direction God was calling us. All of our comforts, career, home, church community, and our family. We traded a place we were accepted, loved, and thriving with opportunities to grow in exchange for the unknown and no guarantees. Prior military training helped in mentally and emotionally preparing for this move. My biggest worry was how this would affect my wife and children.
Over 7,000 miles and a week of traveling with two little ones (ages 3 and 1), we arrived at our destination – Kagoshima, Japan – as independent missionaries with the plans to start outreach ministries and eventually a home church. There was no welcoming party, no team, and no community to help us adjust and settle in.
At first it was lonely and we felt isolated as we learned to let go of everything that was normal and figured out what our new normal would be. The only thing that we could cling to was the confidence in knowing that we were being obedient to the mission God had laid out for our family and that a community back home in the U.S. had our backs. We were in complete surrender to God’s mercy, protection, and provision.
Being self-employed for many years allowed me to set my hours, my income, and control my results without having to depend on others, which also meant not depending on God and at times completely ignoring Him. Giving this area of my life up to be totally dependent on God to provide through inviting others in to support our mission was a humbling experience in itself.
Crossroads Anywhere gave us the community we needed as we built relationships in our neighborhood and our city, and now we have a home, friends, and a place we feel accepted and loved with thriving outreach ministries, a local church community that is growing, and opportunities to advance the Kingdom.
My confidence and comfort now rest in knowing that God has a plan for me, he wants to prosper me and my family, and He gives me hope and a future much better that I can give to myself. -Jack A.