From the President

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Living in Japan brings all sorts of new life experiences for me. Stateside I focus mostly on ministry and family but here in Tokyo, Silk and I share house duties more because she is teaching and we live in a world that requires us to do more teamwork when it comes to daily living.

fish for sale in Japan

Areas where I try to help out are weekly shopping, cleaning the dishes and once in a while laundry. No one trusts me with cooking so this is the best I can offer and all of these things I rarely participate in stateside. It certainly helps me grow as a Christ-like leader. It helps me develop character, one of the biggest challenges in Christian leadership today!

As we were walking down the aisles at Costco the other day, it struck me that shopping with Silk is like walking with God. I never know what way we’re going to turn or what road she’ll take me down. Every time is an adventure. And, it drives me crazy! You see, I hate shopping! Can I say that again, I HATE SHOPPING!!! 

shopping market in Japan

When I do shop, I'm like a bullet and if I can avoid the store and do it online, I’ll take that any day. I would never wander from place to place and then circle back to places I’ve been, sometimes again and again. Although, that may be a little hyperbole. Nevertheless, shopping drives me crazy. But, it is part of what we call the School of God here at Asian Access. You see one of the biggest problems today in Christian leaders is a lack of Christ-like Character.

Walking with God is a journey much like shopping with Silk. I never know where God will lead… My job is simply to follow Him! And I develop character in the journey. 

"The heart of man plans his way, but the Lord establishes his steps."
– Proverbs 16:9

Just like the apostle Paul in the book of Acts, we never know how the Lord will lead. Check out Acts 16! Paul was heading to Bithynia but the Holy Spirit blocked him! He had a more important assignment: going to Macedonia! 

Isn’t it interesting that I once lived in Bithynia and my wife is ethnically Macedonian?

Journeying with Silk, making little detours through shopping and all other aspects of our lives reminds me of my walk with God. I never know how He’s going to lead me or where but I know it’s important to follow. And, along the way, my character strengthens as well. Going shopping, doing dishes, and helping with the laundry makes me a better person, a better Christ-follower, and a better leader. I may not like it, but it’s good for me!

How about you? What helps you in your walk with God?

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Joe Handley

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Joe Handley | My bio
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Ever since joining Asian Access as president in 2008, I've been having the time of my life. In this blog, I hope to share some stories that will encourage you to engage with this ministry. At Asian Access, we change the few, who change the many.

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