will trust Thee, all my life Thou shalt control.
In the past, too unbelieving
Midst the tempest I have been,
my heart has slowly trusted
my eyes have never seen.
Blessèd Jesus, teach me on Thine arm to lean.
O, for trust that brings the triumph
defeat seems strangely near;
for faith that changes fighting
vict’ry’s ringing cheer!
Faith triumphant, knowing not defeat nor fear.
Faith triumphant—blessèd vict’ry!
Every barrier swept away,
Heaven descending, joy and fullness,
of everlasting day!
Jesus only, Him to love and Him obey.
-Herbert Booth (1862-1926)
God is our refuge and strength, a very
present help in trouble. Therefore will not we fear, though the earth be
removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea; Though
the waters thereof roar and be troubled, though the mountains shake with the
swelling thereof. (Psalm 46:1-3)
For in the time of trouble he shall hide me
in his pavilion: in the secret of his tabernacle shall he hide me; he shall set
me up upon a rock. (Psalm 27:5)
Thou shalt hide them in the secret of thy
presence from the pride of man: thou shalt keep them secretly in a pavilion
from the strife of tongues. (Psalm 31:20)
Be thou my strong habitation, whereunto I
may continually resort: thou hast given commandment to save me; for thou art my
rock and my fortress. (Psalm 71:3)
The LORD is my rock, and my fortress, and
my deliverer; my God, my strength, in whom I will trust; my buckler, and the
horn of my salvation, and my high tower. (Psalm 18:2)
O Lord, in Thee is our refuge! In the time of trouble, hide me in Thy pavilion, O hide me in the secret of Thy tabernacle and set me up upon a rock. In Jesus' name. Amen.
The hymn lyrics, which the co-worker of Cornelia Judson wrote,
are inscribed on this stone monument.
This morning, through my friend Sanae, I've
come to know the life and service of the late missionary Cornelia Judson
(1860-1939). Despite her devout and sacrificial life, she is almost unknown to
By reading her biography, my heart's got filled with joy and appreciation
that He's sent such a godly servant to the land of Japan, where most of them
are living and dying without Christ. I want to thank Him for His work through
His faithful servants through the centuries. They have left their comfort life,
family, friends and everything, in order that even one soul would be saved
through their life-long service. And in fact, many of them have become sacrificial
"soils" in the land of pagan. So, I'd like to introduce you the life
and service of this amazing woman of God today.
Cornelia Judson, a missionary to Japan
The people of Matsuyama call her“Judson Sensei (teacher),” with affection. Cornelia Judson was born
in Stratford, Connecticut, on Oct. 20, 1860. The following year, she was
baptized at the First Congregational Church of Stratford. She was brought up in
a pious Christian home and later became the first missionary sent by that
Judson experienced a turning point in her
life at the age of 13, when she came down with a severe case of pneumonia and
was cared for by her parents day and night. Facing death, she asked God to forgive her sins
and vowed to work for God and for many people. Her prayer was heard,and she
miraculously recovered from her illness. She studied hard to go to college.
While at college, she learned about missionary work and especially about the
need for missionaries in Asian countries.
The prayer she had offered to God at the
age of 13 came to mind, and she decided to dedicate herself to a career as a
missionary. After her graduation from college, Judson applied to the Women’s
Foreign Mission Society (WFMS) and was sent to Japan in 1887.
Her first posting was to Niigata Girls’ School
in Niigata. She began to have doubts about her ability to survive Niigata’s
severe winters, especially after her colleague got sick and died. At that time,
she found out that Matsuyama Girls’ School (currently Matsuyama
Junior and Senior High School) was looking
for a woman missionary, so she ended up going to Matsuyama in July 1890.
arriving in Matsuyama in Shikoku, she attended Matsuyama Congregational Church
of Christ (currently the Kyodan’s Matsuyama Church).
Judson walked from her house to work at
Matsuyama Girls’ School. She noticed, however, children playing in the street
or caring for infants, in spite of it being time to go to school. She learned
that it was because of poverty that they couldn’t go to school, and so she
prayed for a place where such children could learn and decided to establish a place where they could study at night. She
talked about her plan with Ninomiya Ikujiro, who was the pastor of Matsuyama Church
as well as being headmaster of Matsuyama Girls’ School.
He understood the need and promised
to cooperate. He was a very busy man, so he introduced her to three youths from
his church. One of them was Nishimura Sugao, who later wrote a well-known
None of the youth had a teaching license,
so in lieu of receiving a salary, they asked Judson to give them English lessons.
She was more than happy to accept their plan and started to prepare for the school to open.
Her two-story house was to be used as the school building: the second floor for
English lessons as well as for her living space and the first floor for school classrooms, so
some old chairs, desks, and a blackboard were brought in from the girls’ school.
The school was opened on January 14, 1891
at 7 p.m., with 25 children attending the opening ceremony. This became the
first Christian night school in Shikoku. Although the three youths taught
without any salary, school finances were still a problem. There were several
discussions about closing the school, but Judson was able to hire paid teachers
and begin preparations to purchase a new school building.
In the autumn of the same year, she was
able to buy a new building, and about 100 children attended. Through this
process, she felt her life’s calling was to work for the education of children
who would otherwise not be able to attend school.
The next year, Nishimura Sugao, one of the
three helpers, became the first headmaster of the school. To establish it as a
qualified school, construction of a new building was required without delay. Judson had very
simple lifestyle of eating only vegetables and eggs with bread, and she did not
order new clothes in order to save money for land and a building.
Even after the school was opened, she
continued to help the school financially by giving from her own funds for its
development. She indeed gave much money to help the school financially.
After Judson returned to the U.S. upon
reaching retirement age, her rheumatism worsened, and she developed a heart condition
due to stress and exhaustion. So her doctor recommended that she convalesce.
However, when she got better, she visited her friends and churches that had supported
her night school and asked them to increase their financial support.
She wrote a long letter to the people of Matsuyama,
some of which is as follows: “If God gaveme wings, I would wish to
fly to you. However, I am nowdisabled and cannot even walk to Japan.
Within a fewyears, I will be free from this disabled body, and I shall
put on a body that can freely come to you.”
Later, at the age of 80, Judson developed
breast cancer that then spread to her stomach, for which she received an
operation. At that time, she told one of her former school students, who was
visiting the US, “If you prayfor me, do not pray that I will live
long. If I leave thisworld, my house could be sold and the proceeds
sent toMatsuyama Night School for their new buildings.”
She was called to heaven on Sept. 17, 1939
while wearing her favorite kimono, Tomesode. She entrusted all her estate to
the American Board and left a will, asking that it be used as a fund for the
Matsuyama Night School (currently Matsuyama Jonan Senior High School). To this
day, the interest on the fund is sent to the school every year.
All through her life, Judson gave many
things and devoted her life to the night school’s education. One of her
favorite Bible verse is said to be “It is more blessed to give than to receive.” (Acts 20:35)
We can see that Judson herself lived that
verse. The way she lived her life taught us that the words from the Bible are
not just what we read or listen to,but are living words. (Tr. GK)
*This Japanese hymn (yamaji-koete) was written by her co-worker Nishimura Sugao, when (after service in the church) he had to stay overnight at the mountain pass all alone due to train problems.In the midst of his utmost loneliness, God reminded him of the story of Jacob in Genesis 28 and he composed the lyrics.
Obeying the Word and becoming a
headcovering Christian woman in the 21st century mean, to many, that we enter
into the narrow gate. Our dear sisters' courageous testimonies prove this fact.
We say adieu to our modern world and dive in the biblical world!
Quite interestingly, however, we are not
just "ancient" people. On the contrary, we are quite "new"
and "revolutionary" kind of people. That's because we are pioneers
who are clearing the way where there was no way before. Are feminists revolutionary then?
Mary A. Kassian says; "Biblical feminists have succumbed to the blue-jean
mentality of thinking they are being courageous and radical, when in fact they
are really only fitting into what is the accepted thought-form of the age
around them" (Feminist Gospel.)
Furthermore, we are called to fight on the
two fronts; While refusing the human-centered modernism and feminism firmly and
uncompromisingly, we must also keep ourselves awake so as not to trapped in
In this fallen world, things constantly
swing like a pendulum, from being wrong in one extreme way to being wrong in
another extreme. The devil never gives us the luxury of fighting on only one
front, and this will always be the case.
We are extremely ancient but extremely new
as well. This is, in my opinion, the mystery of the Bible people. We cling to
the Word which was written well over 2000 years ago so naturally, our obedience
to the ancient Word makes us ancient as well. The Word, however, is also ever
living, eternal life and truth. So from those who dare to live up to this
Logos, "out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water" (John
7:38 b). And this living water touches each generation with fresh vigor and
Only "ancient" women can reach
other "ancient" women
We are seeking the biblical womanhood. We
want to be submissive, gentle, home-oriented women. However, it does not
contradict the fact that we are also soldiers of Christ who are fighting day and
night for soul-winning. In fact, many of our headcovering sisters are called to
witness in the fieriest mission field of today. Yes, I am talking about the
Jewish and Islamic world. Have you wondered why He is using headcovering sisters
for this purpose? Having ministered to women from the Middle East, I realized
that our "ancient-ness" is one of the strongest points for
soul-winning. God-fearing Muslim and Jewish women tend to show friendly
attitudes toward us, because they, as well as we are deeply "ancient."
(*Note; However, I'd like to say that we are not ordered to cover for the sake of
soul-winning or modesty. We cover because NT clearly orders it and it is for
the headship. I recommend you to read the following articles written by brother
Jeremy Gardiner on this issue. "Why Headcovering is not about Modesty" (here), "Should Christian Women Wear Hijab?" (here))
Neither followers of the age nor
traditionalists--, I believe that there is a divine reason why God started this
recovery movement in the 21st century. As time proceeds, He shall reveal it more and more. O Lord, help all of us to
enter into the narrow gate and to fight on the two front bravely. Use all of
our lives to testify You and Your redemptive work on the cross. In Jesus' name.
“Railway station filled with lovely local
accents, I go into the crowd and listen to them.”
This poem (called "tanka" in
Japanese) was written by Takuboku Ishikawa (1886-1912, born in an obscure village
in northern part of Japan) who had then lived in Tokyo. Struck by a heavy homesick,
he went to the Ueno train station, which was filled with people from various
regions, in order to listen to his local accents and to be consoled.
Takuboku Ishikawa, 1886- 1912
When we speak in our local accents, don't we
feel some kind of unseen bonds between us? Our dialects draw us to a sweet recognition
that we are sharing the same "homeland."
And now, thankfully, we as believers in
Christ, are no longer bound by such local, earthly attachments, but have become
pilgrims who are wholeheartedly and single-mindedly seeking a heavenly homeland
The writer of the book of Hebrews testified
13 These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but
having seen them afar off, and were persuaded of them, and embraced them, and
confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth.
14 For they that say such things declare
plainly that they seeka country. 15 And truly, if they had been mindful of
that country from whence they came out, they might have had opportunity to have
returned. 16 But now they desire a better country,
that is, an heavenly: wherefore God is not ashamed to be called their God: for
he hath prepared for them a city. Hebrews 11:13-16
But our citizenship is in heaven.
The revealed reality of the heavenly
homeland here would deliver us from earthly bondage such as
ethno-centralism, ultra-nationalism and so forth. And I believe that the more
we'll be freed from these bondages, the more we've come to be one in Christ and
to each other.
Railway station filled with lovely local
Just like the earthly local folks, we pilgrims also share the special "homely" dialect with which we can
communicate in an intimate and deeper way. Yes, this is the
"language" which is born out of the "fellowship of the
Spirit" (Phil.2:1). And this solidarity is a powerful, life-filled
koinonia (=fellowship) which surpasses any earthly alliance.
,,I go into the crowd
To me, this "crowd" in the railway
station here means a secular world which shows no interest whatsoever in Christ Jesus our
Lord. In the midst of these noisy crowds and its rush streams, sometimes, I am just
overwhelmed by an acute sense of homesickness. And then, like an a little stray
child, my heart yearns for my fellow pilgrims, running about in the railway
,,and listen to them.
Dear sisters and my fellow wayfarers,
reading your devoted writings and listening to your testimonies always make my heart
warm and calm. Though we are currently scattered across
the globe, the day shall come that we will be gathered in one place.
O Lord, until that glorious Day, help us to gaze upon our heavenly homeland with our single and
faith-filled eyes. Amen.