Yasuyuki Kamata (JCFN Member)
This year, equipper conference is on break. Instead, the Urbana Missions Conference will be held in St. Louis. I myself attended Urbana in 2006 and 2009, but the 2006 Urbana was a big turning point. The image I have of that Urbana is a "fabric." A fabric's design is created by skillfully weaving multiple threads together and at the time, there were many loose threads in my life and I could not yet see what kind of design these threads would turn into.
Through the messages given at Urbana, God showed me just how wonderful the salvation that He granted us is. Along with that, He helped me realize that His plan included restoring order to the entire world through Christ, and that God had in mind both the individual and the entire world in missions. Furthermore, as I thought about the restoration of the world through Christ, experts shared about current global needs, according to their area of expertise. The focus in 2006 was on HIV/AIDS and environmental problems and racial disputes in 2009. More than 100 workshops are offered, where businessmen, engineers, housewives, pastors, and people of all vocations learned practical knowledge and skills to minister in their mission fields.
The main sessions of Urbana, being a large-scale conference hosting 20,000, were deep and enriching. Worshipping God in the football stadium of the St. Louis Rams along with 20,000 people was like nothing I’ve ever experienced. In 2006 we had the opportunity to share fellowship with the Korean congregation. In 2009, all of the Asian countries gathered together in one room, putting the boundaries of race and history aside to worship God together in Christ. Urbana is a place where the churches in the world, and each individual member of the Body of Christ meditates on the calling God commissioned them with into the world. It is also a place to experience a foretaste of heaven.
I mentioned in the beginning that when I think about Urbana 06, I think of a “fabric.” At the time, my life had many threads, but I did not know what kind of design these threads would become. But through the conference, God rapidly began weaving the threads together. After the conference, God began to lead me in the direction of “student ministry,” a road that I never imagined before. The ministry I am involved in now is an extension of the road I began walking back then. The plans of God are mysterious and wonderful. I ask that you pray about attending this year’s Urbana. I am praying as well, that God may reveal to you your “fabric” He designed.
"Urbana Missions Conference" is the place where JCFN was born. Since JCFN highly recommends people to attend Urbana Missions Conference, we won't have equipper conference this year. JCFN will host Japanese meeting every evening during the time of country gathering (International Student Track). Please contact JCFN for details.