Guided and Transformed
My father, a Japanese emigrant to Brazil, was a Buddhist. My mother, who was of Japanese descent, was raised a Roman Catholic. Our home was an interesting mixture of Catholicism with Buddhism.
When I was 14, my father died of tuberculosis. He longed to be healed, and perhaps that was why he didn’t reject having a Christian religion in the house. He prayed every day.
My father had a small watchmaking business, and after his death, I had to take over. It was difficult to accept his death and suddenly become the breadwinner. During that time, I started reading the Bible and read a passage that stayed with me: “ ‘I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me’ ” (John 14:6, NIV).
Life was difficult; at the age of 26, I went to Japan to get a better perspective, but things only got worse. I was having terrible back pain and spent much money trying to find relief, but nothing helped. To make matters worse, my three-year marriage fell apart.
My life lost direction until a Seventh-day Adventist, Silvio, began working at the factory where I worked. What caught my attention about this man was his composure and good humor in all circumstances, although every day he suffered from severe pain due to an accident years ago. I knew about pain, so I really admired Silvio.
At that time, I was a member of a Japanese spiritualist sect called Mahikari. We believed in two gods—the god of the universe and the god of the earth. Every time I bowed down to these gods, I remembered John 14:6 and wondered where Jesus Christ was.
Some months after Silvio started working at the factory, he invited me to his church. We became good friends, and during our lunch hour, Silvio told me about Jesus and how He could change my life. But it was because of Silvio’s personal testimony that I wanted to know about the Seventh-day Adventist Church.
I began attending church with Silvio in the city of Hamamatsu and took Bible studies with the pastor. Before long, I was baptized.
It has been ten years since then, and I’m a literature evangelist with the Japan Union. I also lead out in a newly formed Adventist church in the city of Yaizu. I am married to a Japanese Seventh-day Adventist nurse, and we have a two-year-old child.
I praise the Lord for how He has guided and transformed my life.
Adult Sabbath School Lesson L5Q22015 Inside Story