One of the great privileges of our daily interaction with the Nozomi Project ladies is the opportunity to share a short devotion and pray for them – with them! Today at lunch I shared an analogy I had heard from my friend Lorna. When a whale becomes injured, or has lost a baby, the other whales will come underneath that whale and in essence carry the whale through the waters until she is able to swim on her own.
So we, as a Be One/Nozomi community, are called to do the same thing. Galatians 6:2 helped summarize this idea: “Bear one another’s burdens…” There are and will continue to be times when some of us are sick, sad, or grieving, and need to be carried along by the others. My desire is for us to be like the whales, and to carry each other during those times.
The best way to carry each other is by praying for each other. So today I asked the Nozomi ladies to get with a partner and pray for/with each other. I assured them that there is no “right” way to pray. Simple conversation with God. If I can do it in my imperfect Japanese, they can surely talk to God in Japanese! I gave an example of a very short and simple prayer, praying for one of our members C. who is trying to decide whether to quit her other part-time job as a dishwasher in a town that is almost an hour drive away. (I am hoping she can make Nozomi her job every day!). Then we got into pairs and it was super-neat to peek out at one point and see the ladies huddled together praying aloud for the first time!
After this they were talking about how they dread the cold days and nights, as this reminds them of 3/11 and for some of them brings on more depression. We are a team, and so we need to help each other through the cold winter coming up. And I told them to feel free to call me, day or night, when things get too hard – and I will do what every good believing whale knows to do- pray for them.