God Works Everything for Good
Blog post written by Justin Takiguchi, Irvine, CA
On Sunday our team visited Iglesia Cristiana Monte Calvario, a warm, vibrant, hospitable church that loves the Gringo teams. We were warmly welcomed and our hearts were filled by the exuberant worship. Our team members were able to sing and serve in Sunday school and I had the opportunity to share my testimony. I had originally planned to tell the story about how my brother had his light sensitivity healed by God last year. It is a story that I love telling, for that miracle is a defining moment in my life. However, the week before, God strongly placed on my heart to share a much more personal part of my life. When Sunday arrived, I was pretty nervous. Normally, I do not mind speaking in public, so this was something new to me. Our team leader Jenni went up and gave a brief introduction, and then I was handed the mic. As soon as the mic was placed in my hand, God fulfilled His promise in Luke 12:12 and gave me the words to say. The Holy Spirit filled me so that the words that came out of my mouth were not my own (which was a major relief). Praise God for that.
After I finished, I sat back down, and then exhaustion hit me. I felt completely drained of energy. As a little time went on, I stood up and went outside of the church to get some air and rest. While I was sitting there, a man came up to me with Google Translate opened. He had written out some areas in his life where he needed encouragement and told me that what I had said really touched his heart. I did not want to have a conversation over Google Translate, so I went and got one of the translators. As the man was started talking, I prayed a silent prayer for (once again) the words to say and strength, for not only was I super tired, but I felt woefully inadequate to give advice to this man. To make a very long story short, God once again kept His promise, and He gave me the words to say and strength to keep on going. I got to hear this man’s struggle, give him advice, and pray over him. It’s a conversation that I will remember the rest of my life.
As cliche as it sounds, God taught me that He really can use any situation for good. As I have worked through personal struggles, I have doubted if God could truly use these things for good. On Sunday, He proved me wrong. I would have never guessed that God would have used this journey to bring about such goodness not only in the church and that man, but in me as well. I would have never guessed that God would have used my story to encourage and counsel a man who lives hundreds of miles away from me. I am humbled beyond words that He used me, and although my life is still filled with pain, I am encouraged to look forward to how God will use my pain for His purposes.