April 02, 2017

♪Just a Re-Note from Rennie # 265 2017/3/31

“Today I saw a beautiful thing!”
Every Sunday, the young girl comes to stand in front of me until I notice her.
Then she puts her arms around me and hugs me.
Each time she laughs and says, “It’s like you are my Mama”.
I have known her since she was in kindergarten
and she still remembers me and greets me twice each Sunday,
at fellowship time and before leaving.
I feel honored, because she does this only to me.
Though she speaks only these few words, I can feel her love.
I’m sure God smiled too.

“Today I saw a beautiful thing!”
It may sound strange, but it was not in a church.
It was in a Buddhist temple garden,
but I worshipped and thanked God, the Creator for His beauty.
November 16, 2016, we took a day’s drive to Hakone
to view the changing colors of the autumn scenery.
The tints of red, yellow and gold were beautiful
and I wanted to capture them all on camera.
For the first time, we visited Choanji Temple. The Zen Buddhist temple,
founded in 1356 is one of the famous attractions for its nature
and over 200 monk statues. At the entrance we were greeted with a long row
of tall trees with the most beautiful tree at the entrance,
decked out in golden leaves as if to welcome us.
After walking down the path, we came to a gate leading into the temple grounds.
At the entrance we were greeted with statues of monks who had lived
and studied at the temple. As we walked through the gardens looking
at the hundreds of statues I noticed their various poses and facial expressions
as if each was trying to communicate its own message.
Some were so comical that beside the photo
I wrote in what their expressions seemed to speak to me.
One with his hand on his forehead seemed to say,
“O my goodness, I forgot!”
Two arguing seemed to say, “I’m going to be the next president!”
One laying on a stone too short for his body seemed to say,
“This country’s beds are too short!”
One with both hands stretched out seemed to say, “Welcome”.
Several lined up decorated with red caps,
one leisurely relaxed as if to say,
“Thank you, my head is warm now” as he dosed.
At the entrance-exit, there was a line of several who seemed to be saying,
“Welcome” and ”Please come again” just as our ushers
at OBC greet us when we come and leave.
There was a long, tall stairway with too many steps for me to climb,
so I stood at the bottom, watching Keigo climb up the stairs
someone called the “stairway to heaven”,
which ended with a tiny shrine at the top.
As I walked on thru the garden, a lady pulled the cord at another little shrine
as she gave her offering and bowed to pray.
I walked on up through the garden to the end of the path,
which ended in a cemetery. I wondered if some of the monks were buried there.
As I stood enjoying the quiet, calm, beautiful tinted tapestry,
it seemed as if I could hear a choir of voices singing
and I wanted to join in:
“This is my Father’s World, And to my list’ning ears;
All nature sings, and round me rings, The music of the spheres.
This is my Father’s world. I rest me in the thought Of rocks and trees,
of skies and seas; His hand the wonders wrought””
There I felt the presence of the One who had created all this beauty
and I thanked Him. I’m sure God smiled too.
“Many, O Lord, are the wonders which Thou has done.
Psalm 40:5
“Ye shall seek me, and find [me], when ye shall search for me with all your heart.”
Jeremiah 29:13
“And he said, ‘My presence shall go [with thee], and I will give thee rest.”
Exodus 33:14

♪レニー・リノート (翻訳:宇賀治潔) #265 2017 年 3 月 31 日
私の 前に来て立ちつくします。
毎回彼女は微笑み、「あ なたは私の母みたいです」と言います。
彼女は今でも私 のことを覚えていて
彼女は私にしか 挨拶しないので挨拶されて光栄に感じます。
その美しさに私は創造主たる神を礼拝 し感謝しました。
2016 年 11 月 16 日に様々な色の秋の紅葉を楽しみに
箱根まで日帰りドライブ に行ったのでした。
その全てを写真に取りたいと思い ました。
1356 年に建立されたこの禅宗の寺はその自然美と
200 以 上の僧侶の像で非常に有名です。
入口には入口で最も美しい背の高い木々が延々と並んでいまし た。
道を歩いていくと、境内に 続く門が見えました。
学んだ多くの僧侶の像が私たちを出 迎えてくれました。
それぞれの像 は姿勢と顔の表情が様々で
滑 稽な姿の像もいくつかあって、思わず、
その写真の隣には私に伝えようとしていると思われるメ ッセージを
「あー、忘れてい た!」と書きました。
「次期大統領は私だ!」と書 きました。
「ありがとう。これで私の頭は暖かい」 と書きました。
大井バプテスト教会で入退出に案 内係が言うのと同じように
写真の隣にそ のように書きました。
私は昇らずに下で 待っていました。
庭の間を歩いていると、ある女性が別の小さな社で 立ち止まり
聖歌隊の歌声が聞こえてくるように 感じ、
岩も木々も空も海も。み神のみわざを ほめたたえる。」
(新生讃美歌 124 の 1 番)
(詩篇 40 編 6 節)
(エレミヤ書 29 章 13 節)
(出エジプト記 33 章 13 節)

meekmeek at 12:30|PermalinkComments(0)レニー先生 

January 19, 2017

♪Just a Re-Note from Rennie # 264 2016/1/19

“Today I saw a beautiful thing!”
The little old lady always sits in the same place every
Sunday. Her back is so bent that she can hardly be seen sitting in the pew near the front. She
has difficulty walking and is hard of hearing, but she almost never misses a service. She
remains seated during the hymn singing, but she always joins in. She sang in the choir for
years, until it became too difficult for her to attend rehearsals. She loves the hymns and loves
singing for worship. She notices when someone is absent and often asks me about people who
are unable to attend worship. She takes her time slowly shuffling along using her cane as she
walks into the churchyard after alighting from the taxi, which transports her to and from her
home to church. Though she cannot hear, worship is a very important part of her life and she
cannot understand when others do not attend. If the prayers or the sermon are too long, she
falls asleep. She looks so peaceful and happy. I am sure God smiled, too.

“Today I saw a beautiful thing!”
November 20th worship was the yearly “Memorial
Service for our Home-going Forbearers” “Shoutennsha kinen reihai”, at Oi Baptist Church. I
wrote about the beauty of this service in Re-Note #137 on 2012/12/14. When the first names
were called, I felt lonely, because there was no family to lay a flower in memory of them. In
fact there were very few people who remembered them. However, I could not sit quietly when
the next lady’s name was called. I went forward and laid a flower on the table in memory and
thanks to God for Ms Akiyama’s long service as pianist of Oi Baptist Church. Just as we call
it “memorial” service, I recalled memories of her and wanted to call out many in the
congregation who had studied piano from her as a child and have served OBC as pianists to
come lay a flower in her memory. I wanted to ask those in the congregation who had sung
with her accompaniment to stand and sing a hymn in memory. But this was only the
beginning of almost 200 names of three, four, five generations of Christian forbearers and
ancestors to be roll called and remembered. The names varied, some of couples, some of
several generations, some of only one person. Some of those coming forward to place them a
memorial flower, came in 3-4 generation families where the children had never known their
grandparent or great-grandparent. Some came as single women or single men in memory of
their partner. Some came with new brides and husbands who never knew their in-laws or
had only met them once. Some in whole families, some were alone. Many who come to
worship only this one time a year, some who come worship every week. It was like a big
reunion as I watched, as our eyes met in remembrance together and as we all rushed to meet
each other and take photos after the service. Some who (it seemed like was only a short while
ago) were children but now have children of their own whom we had not met. The choir sang
“Shall We Gather at the River” and I think perhaps there was a “great cloud of witnesses
surrounding us” (Hebrews 12:1) on the “other side of the River” singing along with us. Not
only the 200 whose names we called and remembered, but I also recalled many former
missionaries who have joined them. What a joyous sound in Japanese, English and other
languages singing the same old hymn. Pastor Kato preached from John 14:18-19 “Because I
live, you live.” It truly was a beautiful thing! I am sure God smiled too.

♪レニー・リノート (翻訳:宇賀治潔) #264 2017 年1 月19 日

11 月20 日の礼拝は、2012 年12 月14 日のリノート#137 でも
彼らの祖父や祖母を知らない3〜4 世代にわたる家族もありました。
1 年に1 回しか来ない人も多くいました。毎週礼拝に来る人もいました。
聖歌隊が「まもなくかなたの」 (新生讃美歌#602) を歌い、
(ヘブライ人への手紙12 章1節)「川の向こう岸」で私たちと一緒に
賛美歌を歌っているだろうと思いました。教会が読み上げ思い出した200 人の
加藤牧師はヨハネによる福音書の14 節、18節、19 節から

meekmeek at 19:36|PermalinkComments(0)レニー先生 

December 16, 2016

♪Just a Re-Note from Rennie # 263 2016/12/15

(Continued memos)
“Today I saw a beautiful thing!”
Today was her first day to play piano for the morning worship service. As she played the offertory, I closed my eyes and recalled her sitting on the same bench when her legs were too short to reach the pedal as she played for the “All Church Wide Instrumental Hymn Festival” in 1975.
I have enjoyed the many responses I have received from the readers of the Re-Notes entitled “Today I saw a beautiful thing.” One person wrote; “ I realized that beautiful things happen before ones who can appreciate what’s happing are beautiful.” Thank you! I am happy I can recognize that these are beautiful. They were God’s gifts to me on each occasion and I treasure them. Each of the memories is part of my treasures.
“Beauty is in the eyes of the beholder.” Seeing with our heart’s eye.
One memo I found was about the word “sight”. I looked it up in the thesaurus and found,
eyesight, vision, eyes, perception, observation, view, viewpoint, outlook, thoughts, way of thinking, glimpse, seeing, judgment, believing, mind, standpoint, feeling, sentiment, impression, idea, notion. notice, discern, detect, awareness, comprehension, intuition, eye-opener. Extensions of the word are insight, foresight, hindsight, far-sighted.
I recall seeing a program on TV where they mentioned that medical treatment depended on how a doctor was able to read an X-ray or MRI. Once I had an operation, which I do not regret, because it was not cancer. However, after the surgery, the doctor told me he had misread the MRI. He thought the tumor was inside, but it was on the outside, hidden behind the ovaries. How we see things is very important.
November. 13th, our pastor, Rev. Kato’s message was taken from I John 3:1-3. As I read “We are children of God, that is what we are! ...what we will be has not yet been made known, but we know that when he appears, we shall be like him as he is.” As I thought about that, I recalled a quote I once wrote about before, by Ingrid Betancourt in her book, “Even Silence Has an End”, about her experiences while held captive 6 years by FARC, (Revolutionary Armed Forces) in the jungles of Colombia. She wrote: “It took me several years to realize, but you still have the most important freedom of all, that is, the freedom to choose what kind of person you want to be.” I read recently as Columbia is struggling to end the 52 years war, she again repeated a similar message. Not only do we have the freedom to decide what kind of person we want to become, we are responsible for what kind of person we become. The world is changing and to live in the world we must accept change. We do not all agree and we must learn to live together in peace with those who disagree with us. To do so depends upon how we see what is happening around us. Seeing the beauty in life depends upon how we see. There are many colors to enjoy if we are not colorblind. When Keigo first went to America to meet my parents, he was shocked at the small town. My Dad said, “don’t bat your eyes or you will miss it.” Life is too short and if we bat our eyes too long, we will miss seeing the beauty around us. As the saying goes, “Don’t forget to smell the roses.”
“He has made every thing beautiful in his time.”
Ecclesiastes 3:11

♪レニー・リノート (翻訳:宇賀治潔) #263 2016 年 12 月 15 日
今日は彼女が始めて朝礼拝でピ アノを弾いた日でした。彼女が献金の総額を弾いている間、私は目を閉じて彼女は 1975 年 7 月 15 日年の大井バプテスト教会の信徒による楽器による賛美歌演奏会」でその同じ椅子に座ったと きに足が短かったので、ペダルに届かなかったことを思い出していました。
私のリノートの「今日こんな美しいことがありました!」を読んで沢山の感想をいただいてい ますが、ある人から「現在起こっていることが美しいと思える人の前でこそ美しいことは起こる のだと思った」という感想をいただきました。どうも有難う。このようなことが美しいと思える ことが幸せです。それらの一つひとつが神からの私への贈りものでありそれらが私にとって宝物 です。それぞれの時が私の宝物の一部です。
私のメモの一つに「視力 sight」についてのものがあります。それを類義語辞典で調べてみる と、それは「眼の視力 eyesight」「ビジョン vision」「目 eyes」「認識 perception」、「観察 observation」 「見方 view」「観点 viewpoint」「物の見方 outlook」「考え方 thoughts」「物の考え方 way of thinking」「物象 glimpse」「見ること seeing」「判断 judgment」「信じること believing」「心 mind」 「観点 standpoint」「感情 feeling」「感傷 sentiment」「印象 impression」「アイデア idea」「言 い方 notion」「通知 notice」「検出する detect」「認知 awareness」「理解 comprehension」「直感 intuition」「驚くべき経験だ eye-opener」とありました。この言葉の延長として「洞察力 insight」 「予感 foresight」「後知恵 hindsight」「洞察力のある far-sighted」がありました。
テレビのプログラムで、医療とは医師がいかにX線や MRI を読み取れるかだというのがありま した。私は一度手術を受けたことがありますが、手術は後悔はしていませんが、手術後に医師が 私に MRI を読み違えていたと言いました。医師は腫瘍が内側にあると思っていたのですが、実 際には卵巣の後ろの外側にありました。私たちがどう見るかがとても重要です。
11 月 13 日に、私たちの牧師である加藤先生はヨハネの手紙一の 1 章の 1~3 節を引用しなが ら説教をしました。聖書には「わたしたちは神の子ですが、自分がどのようになるかは、まだ示 されていません。しかし、御子に似た者となるこということを知っています」とありました。 これについて考えながら以前にした参照を思い出しました。Ingrid Betancourt がコロンビアの ジャングルでFARC (Revolutionary Armed Forces)の捕虜に6年間なったときの経験を記した 自分の本「Even Silence Has an End」の中で「認識するのに数年かかったが、どんな人間に なるかという最も大切な自由は誰にも奪えないことを認識した」と書いています。最近コロンビ アが 52 年間の戦争を止めようとしているそうです。彼女は同じようなメッセージを再び書いて いました。私たちにはどんな人間になるかという自由があるとともにどのような人間になるかに ついても責任がある。世界は変化していて、その世界に住むためには変化を受け入れなければな らない。全てに同意する必要はないが、意見を異にする人々といかに平和に暮らすかが大切であ る。そうするためには私たちは周りで起こっていること正しく見る必要があります。人生の中に 美を見るためにはまず正しく見なければなりません。色盲でなければ私たちは多くの色を楽しめ ます。恵護さんが初めて私の両親に会うためにアメリカに行ってその町の小ささにショックを受 けたとき、父は「まばたきするなよ、町を見逃すぞ」といいました。人生はあまりにも短すぎま す。目を長くとじていると周りの美しさが目に入りません。英語の諺にも“Don’t forget to smell the roses.”(「美しいバラに気づきなさい」)といいます。
「神のなさることは皆その時にかな って美しい。」
(伝道の書 3 章 11 節)。

meekmeek at 10:50|PermalinkComments(0)レニー先生 

November 26, 2016

♪Just a Re-Note from Rennie # 262 2016/11/25

(Continued memos)
“Today I saw a beautiful thing!” (OBC) The usher held out the Lord’s Supper cup in front of
the lady, waiting patiently, but she did not respond. Finally, the lady sitting next to her
noticed and touched her arm awakening her. Only a short prayer with eyes closed resulted in
a short time of rest. She opened her eyes looking around, wondering where she was and then
smiling embarrassingly, reached for the cup. I’m sure God smiled too.
“Today I saw a beautiful thing!” (IJCS) The little boy slipped away from his mother and
ran to the bench a few rows ahead. I watched, as mother also watched trying to decide if she
should go after him. He reached up to the little girl sitting with her father, put his arms
around her, hugging her and gave her a kiss. Then as father and mother watched, smiling,
without a word, he quietly returned to his seat beside his mother. I’m sure God smiled too.
“Today I saw a beautiful thing!” As I looked across the sanctuary, my eyes met with the man
on the other side to see him smiling as he held his head high singing the hymn. We nodded at
each other happily and continued to sing. I breathed a prayer of thanks to God for answered
prayer. The week before I noticed he was not smiling, nor singing. At the fellowship time,
I mentioned it to him and he replied that, he had not been feeling well. He was one of the
many single person families on my prayer list who have lost their partners in recent years.
But today, he was smiling and singing praise. I’m sure God smiled, too.
“Today I saw a beautiful thing!” November 15 was “Children’s Day!” I love this day. It is a
festival day in Japan called “Shichi-Go-San” (7-5-3) for children 7, 5 & 3 years old. We at Oi
Baptist Church call it “Children’s Day” and observe it at worship, thanking God for all our
children, birth to seven years old. After the children sing a song, each child’s name is called
after which the Pastor prays for them. It was as if I slipped back in time watching the little
girl who is the image of her mother who had stood in the same place as a 5 year old some odd
years ago. She looked out shyly at the congregation until she found sight of her mother, then
smiled. The little 2-3 year old boy seemed more interested in his friends than the adults
turning his back on the congregation to look at the other children, shyly raising his hand in
response when his name was called, oblivious to the fact that he was a 5th OBC generation
child, standing where his mother and grandmother had as children. I noticed an older boy in
the congregation grinning as if he was proud that he had “grown up”, probably remembering
when he stood there a few years before. I also recognized one of the teachers who had stood
there as a child as well as later, her young adult son. As I looked at each child and baby
recalling memories of their parents and grandparents who grew up in the love of God and Oi
Baptist Church, I thanked God for letting me be a part of their lives and growth in Christ.
One mother who has only been coming to Oi Church a few months, stood with her camera
taking a photo of her little 2-3 year old son. As he happily danced around, laughing loudly,
and raising his hand answering “Yes” to the roll call, his mother’s smile suddenly burst into
the sound of laughter. I think perhaps God’s smile broke out into joyful laughter. “He will
fill your mouth with laughter” Job 8:21 “”May the Lord smile on you.” Numbers 6:25

♪レニー・リノート (翻訳:宇賀治潔) #262 2016 年11 月25 日
「今日こんな美しいことがありました!」(OBC での出来事)

「今日こんな美しいことがありました!」(IJCS での出来事)


11 月15 日は「子どもの日」でした。私はこの日が好きです。
この日は、日本では7 歳と5 歳と3 歳になった子どもたちを

というのは、その子の母親が何年か前の5 歳の頃にまで若返りして
微笑みました。2〜3 歳くらいの男の子は、大人たちよりも
自分が大井バプテスト教会の5 代目の子どもであることなど全く知りません。


カメラで自分の2〜3 歳くらいの息子の写真を撮っていました。

「あなたの口に笑いを満たす」(ヨブ記8 章21 節)。
「主があなたに微笑まれるように」(民数記6章25 節)。

meekmeek at 10:44|PermalinkComments(0)レニー先生 

November 05, 2016

♪Just a Re-Note from Rennie # 261 2016/11/4

“Today I saw a beautiful thing.” This is the tile of many of my tiny memos that I have kept
over the years. As I mentioned before, for many years, I have made tiny notes when some
idea comes to mind. In my notebook that I take to worship, I have often written tiny memos
of things I have witnessed during worship. It is not because I am not paying attention to the
worship service. It is because I am enjoying worshiping with others and watching their
reactions as we worship together. I like to worship at Oi Baptist Church. I always envied the
choir members because they could look out over the congregation and watch people as they
worship and I felt especially blessed when I could lead congregation singing and watch the
people’s faces as they sang hymns of praise. Where I usually sit in the side room area, the
pews are lined up facing the opposite side of the sanctuary so that I can look across at people
on the opposite side as well as people sitting in the middle. I can also see the pulpit, the choir,
the organist and pianist. The memos taken during worship date back many years and I call
them “Today I saw a beautiful thing.” Let me share some of these memos.
“Today I saw a beautiful thing!” During worship, the husband leaned over and spoke to
his wife. She smiled and leaned her shoulder over to touch his. It was his first Sunday back at
worship after his long stay in hospital. I was reminded of a scene I happened upon a little
over 40 years ago soon after they had become engaged, when I walked into a CS classroom to
find them praying as they were holding hands. I’m sure God smiled too.
“Today I saw a beautiful thing!” The young boy across from me is standing straight at
attention, with a big smile on his face as he conducts and sings the hymns without looking at
the hymnal. He has perfect rhythm sometimes even better in expressing the words of the
hymn than the congregation song leader. I followed his conducting and felt that he had led
me to worship as we ended the hymn “Hallelujah! Amen!” I’m sure God smiled too.
“Today I saw a beautiful thing!” The offering plate came in front of the lady before she was
ready. She frantically searched for her purse and then reaching in searched for her billfold.
As the usher stood waiting, she looked up in his face smiled and reached over to throw her
offering into the plate, after which she leaned back with a big sigh. I’m sure God smiled too.
“Today I saw a beautiful thing!” It was her 90th birthday and she stood with eyes glued on
the conductor, smiling as she sang in the choir. When the singing was over, she sat
immediately nodding off to sleep during the pastor’s sermon. I’m sure God smiled too.
“Today I saw a beautiful thing!” The child looked over at her mother and then leaned down
low to look up into her mother’s face. She took out a handkerchief, smiling up into her
mother’s face as she wiped the tears from her mother’s eyes. I’m sure God smiled too.
“Today I saw a beautiful thing!” As the choir sang, suddenly I heard a man’s voice joining
them, a little off tune. As I looked in the direction of the sound, I could see the man with his
head up, his eyes closed, smiling as he joined the choir in singing his favorite hymn. I’m sure
God smiled too. How beautiful it is to worship together and behold the beauty of the Lord.
“One thing I asked of the Lord, that I may dwell in the house of the Lord, to behold the
beauty of the Lord.” Psalm 27:4

♪レニー・リノート (翻訳:宇賀治潔) #261 2016 年11 月4 日
「今日こんな美しいことがありました!」(Today I saw a beautiful thing!)。


私は40 数年前にCS ルームに入ったときに見かけた、婚約したばかりの彼らが



彼女の90 歳の誕生日のことでした。彼女は立って指揮者



(詩篇27 編4 節)。

meekmeek at 10:50|PermalinkComments(0)レニー先生 

October 15, 2016

♪Just a Re-Note from Rennie #260 2016/10/14

My lucky month, October is here. I was born twice in October, physical and spiritual.
Now-a-days October seems to come around more rapidly than before. Only a short while
ago, I had a birthday, now another is coming soon (along with renewal of my drivers’ license
and soon my passport). They come so quickly I can’t keep up with how old I am.
Recently I read, “Do not count your age in the number of years, count it in the number of
friends you have.” I thought that was interesting, so I started counting my friends. First I
counted the number of friends I have on this Re-note mailing list. Then I counted other
friends I have at Oi Baptist Church, the friends I have in USA that I visited last year and
those I called and others I missed contact with. While I was still thinking about this we took a
trip to Singapore from September 9-13 and renewed friendship with many there, making
some new friends. The number of friends kept adding up and since I had not written them
down I finally lost count. However, I realized, in counting I had passed Methuselah’s age. The
Bible says Methuselah lived to be 969 years old. Sad, but that’s all we know: “Methuselah
lived 969 years and died.” (Genesis 5:27) It doesn’t even mention how many friends he had.
On September 15th “Respect for the Elderly Day”, it was reported that there are 65,692
centenarians (people over 100 years of age) in Japan, when there were only 153 in 1963. This
topic could go on and on a long time, but let me get back to my friends.
The three full days we were in Singapore were busy & wonderful. Everyday, we met
friends we have known and seen from the first time we visited Singapore. In my greeting to
the International Japanese Church of Singapore upon their 20th anniversary I said that their
history was more than 20 years, because it began almost 40 years ago with the visions and
prayers of many who had appealed to us to send someone to witness to the thousands of
Japanese living in Singapore. Though I am sure that it began even before then, I slightly
stretched the “documented facts” which I have access to. My knowledge of their desires,
prayers and appeals began 37 years ago in December 1979 when I visited Singapore with 4
other ladies from the Japan Baptist Women’s Union on our way to Indonesia on a mission—
tour to investigate the possibility of sending a missionary from Japan Baptist Convention to
Indonesia in cooperation with Indonesia Baptist Convention. As I mentioned once before in a
“JUST A NOTE FROM RENNIE” on our way to Indonesia, we stopped in Singapore. While
there, we gave a program at the Japanese Club for Japanese children living in Singapore.
The “Great Joy Media Centre” directed by SBC missionaries from USA filmed the program
in Japanese to use as an Outreach Ministry to Japanese speaking people. On Sunday, we
visited in Singapore Baptist Churches. Among my friends are some I became acquainted
with on that trip, as well as some of their sons and daughters, whom I met as teenagers and
are now leaders in the churches and convention.
I end this note singing a hymn that is over 100 years old, “Count Your Blessings”, written
in 1897 for young people, by Johnson Oatman, Jr. As I sing, I “count my many blessings;
name you one by one”, and truly, “it does surprise me what the Lord hath done.”
“Many, O Lord, are thy wonderful works, …but they are more than I count.” Psalm 40:5

♪レニー・リノート (翻訳:宇賀治潔) #260 2016 年10 月14 日
私のラッキー月の10 月になりました。私は2 回生まれましたが(1 回目は物理的に、2 回目は霊的
に)どちらも10 月なのです。最近は、10 月が以前よりも早くやって来るような気がしてなりません。
た頃に、9 月9〜13 日にかけてシンガポール旅行をし、そこで多くの友だちと旧交を温めるとと
は確かです。聖書にはメトシェラは969 歳まで生きたと記されています。残念ながら私たちがメ
トシェラについて知っていることは「メトシェラは969 年生き、そして死んだ」(創世記5 章27
節)ということだけです。彼に何人の友だちがいたかは記されていません。9 月15 日の「敬老の
日」に、日本には100 歳以上の人が65,692 人いると報道されました(1963 年はわずか153 人
に最初に来て以来の旧友に会いました。シンガポール国際日本語教会の20 周年記念礼拝での挨
拶では、この教会の歴史は20 年よりももっと長いと私は言いました。というのも、シンガポー
の祈りとビジョンがほぼ40 年前にシンガポールで起こり、それがこの教会の誕生につながった
遣された他の4 人の女性とともに私がシンガポールに立ち寄った37 年前の1979 年12 月にその
ポールで暮らす日本の子ども向けのプログラムを紹介しました。米国から派遣されたSBC 宣教
師の指導の下で、「Great Joy Media Centre」が、日本語を話す人々への宣教ミニストリーとし
今回のレニー・リノートは「数えよ 主の恵み」(新生讃美歌#103)を英語で歌いながら終わり
にしたいと思います。これは100 年以上も前の古い賛美歌で、若者向けにJohnson Oatman, Jr.
が1897 年に作詞しました。“Count my many blessings; name you one by one”, and “it does
surprise me what the Lord hath done.” (「数えよ 主の恵み数えよ みんな一人づつの名前…」
不思議な業を成し遂げられます。…主の御計らいは数え切れない程です」(詩篇40 編6 節)。

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September 21, 2016

♪Just a Re-Note from Rennie #259 2016/9/21

I am not a scientist. I did not enjoy studying science while in school. I do not like or understand Science fiction movies. I enjoy using the computer, but I do not understand computer science. I liked math and enjoyed the race to be first to solve the math problems while in 4th grade. I enjoyed math all through High School, but when I entered college, I transferred that to music theory. However, I no longer enjoy mathematical problems without a computer or calculator. Now we cannot image a life without computers.
Recently when trying to backup some of my files on computer, I became confused with trying to add to a prior used CD, so I transferred to backup on thumb drive. But, no matter what system I use, it soon becomes full and I must buy a new one. Another frustration that appears each time I change computers or update my software is that I have been unable to open some of my previous backup materials on old floppy disks, tapes or CD’s losing some materials. It was frustrating to have to reenter a complete musical composition or manuscript again. When computers first began we were told that “paper” storage would fade out. However, I learned to keep copies (just in case). Even now we can read newspapers on web site and books on IPad. Though sometimes I enjoy doing it, I still like reading and smelling the newspaper each morning. But I have a problem with having too many books and feel guilty when I throw them away.
So I was interested in an article I read about new methods of backup. I don’t fully understand how it works, but scientists think that storing digital data in DNA form has opened up a great new storage method. In choosing hymns for Shinsei Sanbika, we used Word Excell charts using numbers. Sometimes the numbers get rather long and we run out of space. But I read that instead of numbers DNA storage can store a great volume using only four letters. I also read that if this type of storage is figured out, all the books in the world can be stored in a very small space. Michael Denton, a molecular biologist wrote: “The human brain consists of about ten thousand million cells…the total number of connections in the human brain approaches …a thousand million million.” WOW! With DNA storage, just think what the future world will be able to know about us today. But it makes me wonder what is left for the future human brain to discover. Still no matter what they discover, it is impossible to surpass the knowledge of the Creator who created the human brain.
I read an interesting article written in 2011 about “how many people have ever lived on earth”. There can only be a guess because there is no data available for the first large percentage of time and only a guess of when time really began. However, a so-called “guessestimate” is that there were around 108 billion in 2011. Still it is amazing that the human brain has been able to figure out that each human who lived had an individual DNA. Each of us is a separate individual and could only be created by the hand of the Great Creator. It is too vast for me to comprehend. “Such knowledge is too wonderful for me. It is too high, I cannot attain it.” “I will give thanks, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are Thy works. Psalm 139: 6, 14

♪レニー・リノート    (翻訳:宇賀治潔) #259 2016年9月21日
それで、新しいバックアップの方法に関する記事を読んだときに大いに興味を引かれました。動作原理はよく理解できないのですが、デジタルデータをDNA形式で保存するという画期的なデータ記憶方法だそうです。私たちが新生讃美歌に入れる賛美歌を選択したときは、数字を使用してWord Excellチャートを利用したのですが、数字が長くなり過ぎてスペースが足りなくなったことがありました。しかし、数字の代わりにそのDNA記憶媒体を使用すれば、4つの文字の組み合わせでより大量のデータを記憶できるらしいです。また、この新しい記憶媒体が実現すれば、世界中の全ての本を非常に小さなスペースに収納できるとのことです。分子生物学者のマイケル・デントンによれば、「人間の脳は100億個の細胞から構成されていて、…人間の脳の中にある接続箇所の総数は1000兆にも及ぶ」のだそうです。すごい!DNA記憶媒体が実現したら、未来の世界は現在の私たちに関して一体どのくらいのことを知ることになるのでしょうか?では、それ程にも何でも知っている未来の人間の脳にとって、新たに発見することなど何もないのでしょうか?いえいえ、そうではありません。未来の人間の脳がどれほど多くのことを発見しようとも、人間の脳を造られた創造主の知識を超えることはできません。
私は、「これまでこの地球で一体何人の人間が生を受けてきたか」に関しての2011年に書かれた興味深い記事を読んだことがあります。時が始まってから今までの期間の最初の大部分に関してはデータが全く無く、そもそも時が何時から始まったのかは誰も知らないので、この問いに対する答えは所詮は推察の域を越えられないでしょう。しかし、いわゆる「guessestimate(= guess+estimate)」としては2011年の時点で1080億人程度であったろうと言われています。人間の脳が、その人たちがそれぞれ異なったDNAを持っていたことを突き止められただけでも素晴らしいことです。私たち一人ひとりは、偉大な創造主の手によってそれぞれ異なったように造られているのです。このことは大き過ぎて私の理解を超えています。「その驚くべき知識はわたしを超え、あまりにも高くて到達できない」、「わたしはあなたに感謝をささげる。わたしが恐ろしい力によって、驚くべきものに造り上げられている。御業がどんなに驚くべきものか、わたしの魂は知っている」(詩篇140編6、14節)。

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September 03, 2016

♪Just a Re-Note from Rennie #258 2016/9/2

Recently at the Oasis Sports Center after walking 30 minutes and exercising on the
machines for 30 minutes, I was on my way to the Spa when I heard a lady say to her trainer,
“ I cannot remember what you taught me last time” and he answered her, “oboeru koto ja
nakute, mi ni tsukeru koto desu”. Since I learned this term automatically from use in
Japanese, I had to come home and look up the English translation of “mi ni tuskeru” in the
dictionary. The dictionary translates it as “ to learn” like “learn English”, which would
translate as “you do not need to remember it, you need to learn to do it naturally ”. However
another translation listed is “to put on” or “wear” like “put on a shirt”. My translation would
be “ do it naturally until it becomes an automatic reflex or a part of you”.
There are some things that I do not recall when or where they became a “part of me”. Like
getting up in the morning, putting on my clothes, eating breakfast, reading the newspaper
and going to church on Sunday. I only know it has been a part of me since I was a child. Even
without practicing piano for a long time, I can still sit and play my favorite hymns. It is a part
of me. But I was shocked once while singing a hymn I had sung for years that suddenly I
could not remember the words.
I think there is a fine-line between “learn” and “remember”. As I get older I sometimes
seem to be losing some of the things I have “learned” or have naturally been a “part of me”. I
seem to be losing some of my natural reflexes. I continued to think of the topic of “mi ni
tsukeru” as I took a massage bath, sauna and shower. My mind was somewhere else, but I
automatically used body soap to shower, however I was surprised when I realized I had also
used body soap instead of shampoo to wash my hair. If someone else changed the place of
the shampoo and rinse on the shelf, I would probably shampoo with rinse and vice versa
while thinking of something else. But I don’t want to brush my teeth with shaving cream.
When we are suffering or in distress a “part of us” cries out, “God help me”, and when the
pain leaves we say, “Thank you Lord”. But sometimes, we forget when the pain leaves. For
years it has been a “part of me” when I go to bed at night to repeat Matthew 6: 34 “Today has
had enough trouble of its own. Thank you God!” and when I get up in the morning repeat
Psalm 118:24 “This is the day that the Lord has made. Thank you God!”
During my last visit with Audree, my sister who was suffering with Alzheimer’s disease,
the Gideon Bible Society gave her and her husband recognition for their long work of service.
She understood what they were saying and on our way home, she said to me, “We must
rethink our church going.” Tears came to my eyes as I thought that “church going” to her
meant the many jobs of service to God through the church that she had done for years, which
had become an important “part of her”; and it made me sad because she had lost it. But as
God has promised: “in a twinkling of the eye, at the last trumpet…the dead will be raised
imperishable…this perishable will put on the imperishable.” I Corinthians 15:51~54 ”Put
on the Lord Jesus Christ.” Romans 13:14 “”Be renewed in the spirit of your mind, and put
on the new self which is the likeness of God…” Ephesians 4:24 “Put on the whole armor of
God.” Ephesians 6:11.

♪レニー・リノート (翻訳:宇賀治潔) #258 2016 年9 月2 日
最近、オアシス・スポーツ・センターで30 分間ウォーキングをしてから30 分間マシンを使って運
帰ってから「身に着ける」の意味を和英辞書で調べてみる必要がありました。辞書には “to learn” like
“learn English”とあり、これは「覚えるのではなく、自然にできるように学習する」という意味です。
しかし、別の解釈として “to put on” (着る)like “put on a shirt”(シャーツを着る)もあり、これ
う!」(マタイによる福音書の6 章34 節)と祈り、朝起きると「この日は主が作られた!神様ありが
とう!」(詩篇118 編24 節)と祈ることが「自分の一部」になっていました。
死なないものを着ることになる」(コリント人の第一の手紙15 章50〜54 節)と約束してくださって
います。「主イエス・キリストを身にまといなさい」(ローマの信徒への手紙13 章14 節)。「心の底
章23〜24 節)。「神の武具を身に着けなさい」(エフェソの信徒への手紙6 章11 節)。

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August 13, 2016

♪Just a Re-Note from Rennie #257 2016/8/12

Perhaps you recall reading the news in Japan about recent volcanic eruptions. We took a
trip to Kagoshima where I took photos from our hotel window of the volcanic ash spewing
from Mt. Sakurajima eruption. We drove round the island where we saw a tori submerged in
lava from the volcano. According to the Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA) there are 110
active volcanoes in Japan. We are strange creatures. With this many active volcanoes,
earthquake faults and typhoons we wonder why 126,311,825 people (including me) still wish
to live in this small space and feel that it is the most beautiful country in the world.
I love mountains. Mississippi has many hills, but Mississippi nor Louisiana where I lived
have any mountains. In fact I remember the first time I saw a mountain was after
graduating from college. When I saw them in the background I was surprised and thrilled,
but when we started climbing them I was frightened. The first time I climbed a mountain
was in North Carolina near Ridgecrest. I remember while we were there, two college
students from Ridgecrest climbed a near by mountain and sat down on a rock at the top of a
waterfall. This was one of the most beautiful places where we climbed to see the waterfall
and the sunrise. However when they stood up, they slipped and felt over the waterfall. One of
them was saved, but being up at the top of the mountain, it took several hours for someone to
run down for help and then for the rescue squad to climb back up the mountain, so the other
girl did not make it. Then I realized the dangers of mountains.
The first time I really climbed a big mountain was when I first came to Japan. I went with
a group of youth from the Mitaka Baptist Church to climb Mount Mitake. On the way up
there were several trails and we had a leader so it did not take long to climb. However, on the
way down, the leader lost the trail and we wandered around and around going back up and
down several times, until it became dark. We had only one flashlight, so we had to hold
hands to get down. There were no cell phones in 1962, so there was no way to notify those
at the bottom waiting for us. On the trail we met up with 2 or 3 people who were also lost and
they joined our group until finally the leader found the shrine, which I heard is at the top and
led us down the correct pathway. It was so dark we could not see the shrine, but I remember
holding a friend’s hand as we counted over 100 steps climbing down a steep stairway. When
we reached the bottom many people were waiting for “the group with the foreigner who were
lost on the mountain in the dark”. They told me with the many times we climbed up and
down again we could have climbed Mount Fuji. But after that, I never got courage to climb
Mount Fuji. Now with the warning that in the future, if a big earthquake comes, Mount
Fuji may also erupt, I am not interested in climbing it. I just feel concerned for the beautiful
Kaneyama Inn, in Fujiyoshida at the foot of Mt. Fuji where we enjoyed several stays.
I shall never forget on our visit to Hawaii when we walked out on the hard lava that had
destroyed a whole village. As it began getting dark we could see the volcanic fire burning in
the distance and dim lights in the homes of some who still called it home.
“He who forms the mountains, and creates the wind, and declares to man what are his
thoughts…the Lord God of hosts is His name. Amos 4:13

♪レニー・リノート (翻訳:宇賀治潔) #257 2016 年8 月12 日
発表によると日本には110 の活火山があるそうです。私たちは不思議な被創造物です。このよう
に多くの火山、地震を起こす断層、台風があるのに、私を含む126,311,825 人の人々がこの小さ
で歩きました。1962 年のことで、当時はまだ携帯電話がなく、麓で私たちを待っている人々に
連絡する方法がありませんでした。途中で同じように迷子になった2〜3 人が私たちに加わり、
が、友と手をつないで階段を100 段以上も下ったことを覚えています。麓に辿り着いたとき、多
る主 」(アモス書4 章13 節)。

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July 29, 2016

♪Just a Re-Note from Rennie​ #256 2016/7/29

Today after walking on the treadmill at the Oasis gym, I went upstairs to the Gardish Spa to take a shower. I began to notice the signs and again thought of Globish (a so called worldwide dialect using non-native words). Recently I have heard nothing about the use and progress of Globish, which I wrote about several years ago, however the use of non-native words has increased. Even foreign words other than English, such as “Tsunami & El Nino” have become Globish.
First I noticed the “Locker room” with a sign offering “Rental towels”. In the “shower room” there was “Body soap”, “Shampoo” and “Rinse”. The “Massage bath” and “Vibra bath” felt so good as well as the “Mist Sauna” and the “Steam Sauna”. It was too hot to take a “Finland Sauna”. Because of lack of time, I did not take the “Herb bath” or “Milky bath”, either, but I could not resist taking a short “Onsen bath” (hot springs bath). As I got out, suddenly I realized “Onsen” was the first Japanese word I had seen. I entered the “Powder room” where there I used the “Dryer”, “Face soap” and “Hand soap”. As I saw all of these “English” words written, I thought, there should be no problem for people to take a bath when they come to Japan for the Olympic games in 2020. Then I realized I was not reading English, but that I was reading signs written in Japanese katakana characters. Suddenly, I thought Tokyo should advertise for “people coming to the Tokyo 2020 Olympics to learn Katakanago” rather than English. Japanese people that I met in Singapore who were learning to speak Singlish told me there was no Janglish, but I think the equivalent is “Gairaigo” or foreign “loanwords”. However there are some sounds that are not in the katakana language, requiring substitutes. So even if foreigners learn to read katakana they may not really understand the meaning, unless they learn it as Janglish because of the pronunciation. I recalled in language school struggling with the meaning of “Firippu” to be finally told it was Queen “Elizabessu” husband, but at church when I read about Philip in the Bible his name was called “Piripo”. More confusing.
Thinking of this, I looked at the signs again thinking of their pronunciation as I read “Rokka rumu” (Locker Room) “Rentaru taoru” (rental towels). shawaa ruumu” (shower room) “bodi sopu” (Body soap) “shampu” (Shampoo) “rinsu” (Rinse) masaji basu” (Massage bath) “baibura basu” (Vibra bath), “misuto sauna” (Mist sauna), “suchimu sauna” (Steam sauna), “Fuinrando sauna” (Finland Sauna), “habu basu” (Herb bath), “Miruki basu” (Milky bath) Pauda rumu (Powder Room) Doraiya (dryer) Feisusopu (Face Soap) handosopu (Hand Soap), etc. Someone might become confused and end up at the “supa” (supermarket) instead of the “supa” (Spa) or think Japan has a “massage bus” instead of massage bath.
“Unless you speak intelligible words with your tongue, how will anyone know what you are saying? You will just be speaking into the air.” I Corinthians 14:9
♪レニー・リノート    (翻訳:宇賀治潔) #256​ 2016年7月29日
今日、オアシス・ジムでトレッドミルを歩いた後、シャワーするために二階のガーディッシュ・スパに行きました。様々なサインが目に入り、Globish (グロービッシュ=世界で通じる非ネイティブ単語)についてまた考えました。グロービッシュについて、私は数年前に一度書いたことがあるのですが、その使用や進歩について最近は語られることが全くありません。しかし、最近非ネイティブ単語が増えているのは確かです。英語ではない非ネイティブ単語もグロービッシュになっています(例えばツナミやエルニーニョなど)。
このようなことを考えながら、ロッカー・ルーム(”Rokka rumu”)、レンタル・タオル(”Rentaru taoru”)、シャワー・ルーム(”shawaa ruumu”)、ボディー・ソープ(”bodi sopu”)、シャンプー(”shampu”)、リンス(”rinsu”)、マッサージ・バス(”masaji basu”)、バイブラ・バス(”baibura basu”)、ミスト・サウナ(”misuto sauna”)、フィンランド・サウナ(”Fuinrando sauna”)、ハーブ・バス(”habu basu”)、ミルキー・バス(”Miruki basu”)、パウダー・ルーム(”Pauda rumu”)、ドライヤ(”Doraiya”)、フェース・ソープ(”Feisusopu”)、ハンド・ソープ(”handosopu”)などの各サインをもう一度見直しました。スパ(spa)を探してスーパー(supermarket)に行ってしまう人や、日本にはマッサージ・バス(bath)ではなくマッサージ・バス(bus)があると思う人がいるかも知れませんね。「あなたがたも異言で語って、明確な言葉を口にしなければ、何を話しているか、どうして分かってもらえましょう。空に向かって語ることになるからです」(コリントの信徒への手紙一の14章9節)。

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July 18, 2016

♪Just a Re-Note from Rennie #255 2016/7/18

As I wrote the last Re-note about death,
I recalled as a teenager of hearing variouspreachers preaching about death,
heaven and hell. There were so many conflicting interpretations
that I became very confused. I recall my father saying that he
believed Jesus would return while he was still living, but he died in 1976. When we
discussed the world changes and problems, my sister would say, “The rapture is
coming.” I have heard many preach on Revelations and I love to sing Handel’s
Hallelujah Chorus, taken from Revelations 19, but I do not understand the deep
meaning of all the revelations that John wrote about. I have read many books of
testimonies of people who had real life “out of body experiences” Two particularly
that left deep impressions were “Ninety Minutes in Heaven” and “Heaven is for
Real”. Most write about heaven and how peaceful it feels. I recall that, my sister sent
me a note she found in my father’s desk after he died, where he wrote about his
“death experience” years earlier while he was in hospital, which he had never told
anyone. He wrote that like most people’s testimonies of hovering above the body
looking down on what is going on, but instead of a heaven experience, he wrote about
walking on the rim of hell with fire boiling up and each time he stumbled Jesus
reached down and pulled him back and carried him in His arms.
Recently I read an interesting article in the International New York Times about
the disappearance of the period (.) or (full stop). According to David Crystal the
digital age has resulted in the disappearance of the use of the period. However, it is
still important in regular writing or else the meaning may not be understood.
Punctuation is part of our language. And now with the digital age we have
emoticons and abbreviations, which are creating a new universal “Globish” language.
However the period, which is called a dot in computer language is still necessary. To
omit it can cause our message to go nowhere. (As a PS for my English readers, you
may be interested to know that the Japanese period is a small circle (。) rather than a
dot (.) I looked up the word period and discovered that it means to denote the time
when something ends, and the word period also denotes the time of a happening. A
dash is used to denote the time a person lives from birth to death. For instance,
Audree lived 1924-2016, so she lived the dash (92 years from birth to death) What
follows? Is it a comma or a period to begin a new sentence? I always felt the period in
telegrams where you had to add the word “stop” was a waste when you were only
allowed so many words. Many times the period is used for emphasis or as a strong
signal. I recall as a child, my mother saying to me, “No, you cannot! Period!” meaning
“that is final and end of conversation.” The work of the period is to signal the end of
sentence and beginning of another! There are some things we have no control over.
God determines the period of the dash in our lives, the beginning and the end
(period). He is “Alpha & Omega” “It is not for you to know times or epochs which the
Father has fixed by his own will.” Acts 1:7 “My times are in Thy hands.” Psalm 31:15

♪レニー・リノート (翻訳:宇賀治潔) #255 2016 年7 月18 日
父は1976 年に亡くなったのですが、生きている間にイエス
姉のオードリーが、「もうすぐ携挙(the Rapture)が起こる」と言いました。私は、多くの説教
者が黙示録に基づいて説教をするのを聞き、また黙示録19 章を基にしたヘンデルのメサイヤを
分間(Ninety Minutes in Heaven)」と「天国は本当だった(Heaven is for Real)」でした。ほ
の「死の経験(death experience)」についてのものでした。他の人と同様に、自分が自分の体か
最近読んだInternational New York Times の記事の中で興味深いものがありました。それは
ぬまでの期間は、「Audree lived 1924-2016」のように「ダッシュ(—)」で表します。オードリ
ーはこのダッシュが表す期間(生まれてから死ぬまでの92 年間)だけこの世に存在しました。
頃、母が私に「No, you cannot! Period!」と言ったことがあります。「ダメといったら絶対ダメ、
がたの知るところではない」(使徒言行録1 章7 節)。「私の時は御手の中にある」(新改訳の詩篇
31 編15 節)。

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July 04, 2016

♪Just a Re-Note from Rennie #254 2016/7/3

Recently on June 10, 2016, I struggled with words to inform friends that
my only sister, Audree had died. My niece called but could not say anything,
so we both together said, “She’s gone.” Some people use different kinds of
expressions: “She passed away. She left this world. She is in heaven. She is
with Jesus. She went to be with the Lord. She is in a better place.” etc. I
received some very comforting words from many people. I was surprised
when one person only looked at me and said: “Dying is terrible”. Our
expressions often reflect our belief and theology.
I am not a theologian. I studied Systematic Theology and other theology
courses in seminary, but still I am ignorant in understanding deep Biblical
theology, especially about death. I have several outstanding theologian
friends who read this note and often respond, however, I am embarrassed
because of my ignorance of deep theology. They are very kind in their
words but I am sure they often wonder about some of my writings and use of
scripture. I believe God is the giver of life and everlasting life, but I do not
understand death and after death.
When I heard that my father died in 1976, I had the strangest feeling. I
felt closer to him than before, when he was alive in Mississippi. Later when
my mother and brother died, “I thought, now they are together.” When I
heard my sister Audree had died, I wondered if they were together. I recalled
the last words I said to her, “I will meet you again; here, there, or in the air.”
When we were translating hymns for the Japanese Hymnal “Shinsei
Sanbika”, I realized how accustomed we become to singing without really
noticing or realizing the meaning of the words. I recall how surprised I was
when I sang the last words of “Sweet Hour of Prayer” in English, after
singing it in Japanese for 50 years. The closing words are, “and shout, while
passing through the air, ‘Farewell, farewell, sweet hour of prayer’.” I had to
go back and read the sentences before which had not really entered my mind.
Recently we had 3 funerals for long time friends and church members of Oi
Baptist Church. As we bid them farewell we wondered about the ending of
life. Recently I saw a movie where a young girl and her boyfriend both had
only a short time to live. Once he had been given up and pronounced dead.
As they discussed the situation, he said, “when you die, there is nothing. I
know. I was dead for several minutes, and there was nothing!” I recalled
when I had anesthesia. One minute, I was talking to the doctor and the next
I awoke in a different room on a different bed. In between, there was
nothing. Maybe there is nothing, until we are “caught up together in the
clouds to meet the Lord in the air.” I Thessalonians 4:17
レニー・リノート (翻訳:宇賀治潔) #254 2016 年7 月3 日
最近(2016 年6 月10 日)、私の姉のオードリーが亡くなったことを友だちにどのような
らない沈黙がしばらく流れた後、私と姪が同時に「She’s gone(彼女が旅立った)」と言い
ました。「She passed away(亡くなった)」、「She left this world(他界した)」、「She is in
heaven(天国に行った)」、「She is with Jesus(イエスの所に行った)」、「She went to be with
the Lord(主に召された)」、「She is in a better place(もっと良い所に行った)」などの他
私は、1976 年に父が亡くなったと知らされたとき、世にも不思議な気持ちになりました。
をより身近に感じたのです。後になって、母が、そして兄が亡くなったときにも、「now they
are together(今、父の元に行ったのだ)」と思いました。姉のオードリーが亡くなったと
言葉、「I will meet you again; here, there, or in the air(ここか、あそこか、空中で再会し
らされました。賛美歌「Sweet Hour of Prayer(しずけき祈りの)」を今まで50 年間日本
驚きました。その最後の言葉とは「and shout, while passing through the air, ‘Farewell,
farewell, sweet hour of prayer」(空中を通りすぎる時、「さよなら静けき祈り」を叫ぶ)で
最近、大井バプテスト教会の長年の友であり教会員であった3 名の方の葬儀がありまし
共に雲に包まれて引き上げられ、空中で主に出会う」(テサロニケの信徒への手紙一の4 章
17 節)まではきっと何もないのでしょう。

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June 20, 2016

♪Just a Re-Note from Rennie #253 2016/6/19

Today as I put away the laundry I was stressed out with trying to fit underclothes in an overflowing drawer and I recalled the 3 days we spent in Mississippi a year ago, wearing the same clothes. Since our luggage was delayed, we went to the department store to buy underclothes. Thinking we would need only enough for a day or two until our luggage came, I looked for packages of 1 or 2, but everything was sold in packages of 6, so we bought a package of 6 underclothes and 6 pairs of socks for Keigo, thinking “Now he has more than enough until the luggage arrives.” I had difficulty getting everything into the suitcase as we prepared to return to Japan. It became stuffed full with so many pairs of underclothes and socks; and when I put away the laundry today, there were too many socks and underclothes to fit into the drawer. It made me begin thinking about the stress and tension of “not having enough” and of “having too much”.
As a child, we did not have “enough” money to buy luxuries and sometimes even the necessities. However, I do not recall being unhappy for any length of time. I sometimes felt embarrassed that my friends had things I did not have, but I do not remember not having “enough”. I recall the happy times when I was able to have some things that were extras and not really necessities for living, such as receiving a penny to buy jawbreaker, receiving an apple for Christmas, or receiving a pair of secondhand shoes and a secondhand pink dress and even a hat. I remember how good and juicy the dirty onion was that I stole from the garden when I thought I was “hungry”, but I don’t remember crying myself to sleep when I really was hungry as I was told later. Now, though I love Kobeya’s English bread and French bread, I still recall how delicious Mama’s biscuits with tomato gravy were and would love to eat some again.
Now, in a world where we have so much, that is “more than enough”, rather than stress from worrying about not having “enough”, we are stressed out because we have “too much”, so that we cannot consume it all before “the bread” mildews. When I saw the mildewed bread today while preparing for lunch, I thought about God’s daily “manna” in the Old Testament and guiltily looked for something else that God had given us to eat for lunch.
As I recall the scripture I have repeated so often before going to bed at night: “Do not be anxious for tomorrow; tomorrow will care for itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” (Matthew 6:34) I am reminded of the Dutch proverb: “Enough is better than too much”, and I pray, “Lord don’t let tomorrow’s trouble be “too much!”
“My grace is enough for you. “ II Corinthians 12:9

♪レニー・リノート    (翻訳:宇賀治潔) #253 2016年6月19日

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June 04, 2016

♪Just a Re-Note from Rennie #252 2016/6/4

As I wrote about my childhood memories I recalled more and more that I thought I had forgotten. Many things helped me realize that many people have had an influence upon my life and what I am today. Recently I heard a young person say the reason he stopped coming to church was he had bad memories of his parents forcing him to go. I wonder what type of person he would have become if they had not. Another youth once said she did not learn anything at church as a child. Yet much that she is teaching children now are things she learned at church. Though all our memories are not always pleasant, they have affected our learning and our life as we are now. There are many things I do not know when or where I learned or who taught them to me. I am sure I was perhaps brainwashed as a child and maybe still have prejudices that I formed and have not been able to overcome.
I have often heard Japanese people say, “I am happy I was born Japanese.” And I think: “I am happy I was born to my parents.” Have you ever thought about what type of person you would be if you had been born to different parents or a different nationality? When we see others who are faced with unfortunate situations, we often hear the expression: “But for the grace of God, that could be me.” But this is confusing and creates a problem suggesting that the reason that person is in that situation is because God did not share His grace with them. As I write about childhood memories, I realize that compared to today’s world, we were very poor, but at the time I did not realize it. Some people we thought were “rich”, and I recall one memory of envying them because they could eat “store bought bread”, that we called “light bread” and was surprised when the father came to our house to eat my mother’s “home cooked biscuits.” But I was thankful for my biscuit lunch, when I saw my friend’s lunch of syrup on rice. Also, I recall my college friends envying me for my “home-made” dresses that my mother made while I wanted a “store- bought” one. When I told my father that I felt sorry for my little “black” friends playing in the rain, he said, “Look at them. They look happier than you.” I felt sorry for the little “Cajun” children and was happy my mother made them dresses, but my mother could not make delicious “French gumbo” like their mother.
Though I do not remember many who had an influence on my life and building my character and morals, I am grateful. I am happy God chose the time and place to give me life and the people who became my family, friends and teachers. I am happy I was sometimes forced to do what I did not want to do and was perhaps “brainwashed” to believe in the Bible and God’s love.
I do not need to compare myself with someone else. I am happy that I am “me” as I am, because I know that, “but by the grace of God, I am what I am.” I Corinthians 15:10 and that “God’s grace is sufficient for me”. II Corinthians 12:9

♪レニー・リノート    (翻訳:宇賀治潔) #252 2016年6月4日
 日本人はよく「日本人に生まれてよかった」と言います。私は「父母の家族として生まれてよかった」と思います。皆さんは、別の父母の家族として生まれていたら、あるいは別の国籍に生まれていたらどのような人間になっていただろうと考えたことがありますか?私たちは、不幸な状況に置かれている人々を見ると、他人事とは思えず、つい「神の恵がなければ自分もそのようになっていた」と言います。しかしこの表現は要注意です。裏を返せば、不幸な状況に置かれている人には神の恵がなかったのだと言っているに等しいからです。子どもの頃の思い出を書くにつれ、現在の世の中と比べると、当時は気が付いていなかったけれど随分と貧しかったことが分かります。私たちは、世の中には「金持ち」の人もいるのだと思いました。そして、私たちが「light bread」と呼んでいた「お店のパン」を食べられるそのような子を羨ましく思ったものです。その子の父親が、私の母の「手作りビスケット(パン)」を食べにわざわざ我が家に来たのにもびっくりしました。しかし、私の友だちのランチがご飯にシロップをかけただけなのを見て、母が手作りしたビスケット(パン)のランチに感謝しました。また、私のカレッジ時代の友だちが、私が母の手作りのドレスを着ているのを見て羨ましいと言いました。でも私はお店で売っているドレスの方が欲しかったのです。また、「黒人」の小さな友だちが雨の中で遊んでいるのを見て可哀想に思い、そのように父に言ったことがあります。すると、父は、「よく見てごらん、彼らの方がお前よりずっと楽しそうじゃないか」と言いました。私は貧しい「ケージャン」の子どもたちが可哀想だと思っていたので、母が彼らにドレスを作ってあげたときは自分のことのように嬉しくなりましたが、母は彼らの母親ほどには上手に「フレンチ・ガンボ」(ルイジアナ州のケージャン料理)を作れなかったのです。

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May 07, 2016

♪Just a Re-Note from Rennie #251 2016/5/6

As a child, I recall many times when my friends would tease me, saying that I could not do something that we knew was “wrong” because I was a “PK” (preacher’s kid). I would get upset and tell them, it was just as bad for them, because they were deacons’ kids. Maybe even then, I was taught that pastors and pastors’ family were supposed to be better than others and not sin. But through my experience this time in being disappointed with the pastor, I realized that pastors are human and sin as well as anyone else. I also learned that God uses weak and sinful people. I recalled David and how God blessed and used him and Solomon. I recalled Peter and how Jesus forgave and used him. At the time of my disappointment, a deacon who knew the circumstances asked me to let him take it to the church. I refused because just a week before an elderly lady who had just been recently baptized came to my office praising the pastor. I could not destroy her faith. I refused to tell what had happened. In spite of this, God blessed the pastor’s ministry. (Ironically, years later the pastor came to seminary looking for a Minister of Music and requested an interview with me.) I took the first door that opened, left the church and for several years taught public school music. I kept looking back at that “closed door”, not longingly, but unable to forget the pain and having no desire to serve on a church staff again. However, God works in such mysterious ways. I do not recall the circumstances leading up to the decision, but when I was most confused and doubtful about God’s call, I felt led to go to Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary and study Church Music Ministry. It was a great enlightenment and I was greatly blessed during my study at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. Though I had served in church music and taught music in schools several years, I had not saved enough to pay for more study. However, the Mississippi Baptist WMU gave me a scholarship and SWBTS gave me a scholarship as a teaching fellow, teaching class piano. Most of the students were voice majors who could not pass the piano barrier. This was a new experience for me. Most were men who had such big hands that I struggled to teach them to play, without playing 2 notes with one finger. Most of them later became Ministers of Music in Southern Baptist Churches, State Church Music Secretaries, Foreign Missionaries or working for the Southern Baptist Convention. Several contacted me later thanking me for helping them pass the piano test.
I had great professors and as a teaching fellow had good fellowship with them as friends. My time at Southwestern was one of my happiest. “Though the Lord give you the bread of adversity and the water of affliction, yet your Teacher will not hide himself…and your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, ‘This is the way, walk in it,’ when you turn to the right or when you turn to the left.” Isaiah 30:20-21

♪レニー・リノート    (翻訳:宇賀治潔) #251 2016年5月6日
素晴らしい教授が沢山おられ、私は教育助手として、彼らとよき友だち付き合いをさせていただきました。サウス・ウェスタンで過ごした月日は自分にとって最も幸せなときの一つでした。「我が主はあなたたちに災いのパンと苦しみの水を与えられた。あなたを導かれる方はもはや隠れておられることはなく、… あなたの耳は、背後から語られる言葉を聞く。『これが行くべき道だ、ここを歩け、右に行け、左に行け』と」(イザヤ書30章20、21節)。

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April 16, 2016

♪Just a R e-Note from Rennie #250 2016/4/16

The First Baptist Church, Jonesboro, LA was a beautiful building in the middle of town. There was a tall steeple on top with a carillon in the tower that rang out every morning at 8:00 to welcome the small city, signaling the shops to open for the day and the school classes to begin. Once the timer did not work and the chime did not ring, leaving the whole town’s schedule off balance, so I was asked to go to church each morning before 8:00 to be sure that it rang on time. I felt very much needed like the whole town was depending on me to start the day. This also worked out well for a mother who dropped off her child at Kindergarten before she went to work.
Pastor Mason’s weekly messages in the bulletin were very refreshing and inspirational and later were published in a book called, “Now Then” by Rev. David Mason. His messages were a great influence in my life. We were a very close-knit family church and I loved it. I felt God was in my life and I was very happy, growing more confident after the previous job experience, but gradually the work schedule of music, piano lessons and kindergarten again became heavy for me and again I became overworked and exhausted. I felt led to leave and go to a church calling me as full time Minister of Music with more salary. I still have pleasant memories of my time at Jonesboro and later I often regretted leaving.
As mentioned earlier, there are some experiences that are difficult to write and some that should not be written. During the next few years in my life, there were things that happened to make me doubt that my call was to serve as a leader in church. My father was a pastor and though he had many faults, I respected him and felt he was a follower of what he preached. I had always had good experiences with my pastors and especially in working with Pastor Mason in Jonesboro. Therefore when I had an experience of realizing that the pastor could falter and then blame me falsely to save himself, I lost confidence. Though I realized that I too was weak and could not judge, still I felt that as God’s chosen and called leaders, we should strive to be more faithful and true to the teachings of the scriptures. Rather than writing about the experience, in the next note, I would like to write what it taught me and how it influenced my thinking and faith in God. I recall during my faltering my father said to me, “Don’t let anyone stand between you and God. It makes you smaller than they are. Keeps your eyes on Jesus and imitate Him”
Again, I am reminded of the rest of the famous words of Alexander Graham Bell: “When one door closes, another opens, but we so often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door, that we do not see the ones which opens for us.” Another door opened but I seemed to falter, losing faith, looking back at the previous doors wondering where God’s was leading me. “You will seek me, and you will find me, because you seek me with all your heart. Jeremiah 29:13
♪レニー・リノート    (翻訳:宇賀治潔) #250​ 2016年4月16日
ジョーンズバラのFirst Baptist Churchは町の中央にある美しい建物でした。この教会には尖塔があって、そこに設置されているカリヨン(組み鐘)が毎朝8:00に鳴って町の人々に時を知らせました。カリヨンが鳴ると店が開き、学校の授業が始まります。あるとき、タイマーが故障してカリオンが鳴らず、町全体のスケジュールがおかしくなりました。それで、私は毎朝8時前には教会に行って、定時に鐘が鳴ることを確認する仕事を与えられました。町全体の一日の始まりが自分の肩にかかっていると思うと責任を感じました。朝早く仕事に出かける幼稚園児を持つ母親にとっても、このカリヨンの音は、車で自分の子を幼稚園に送って職場に行くタイミングを知るうえで便利でした。
メイソン牧師の日曜礼拝の説教はとても力強く感動的で、後に「Now Then」(著者デービッド・メイソン博士)として出版されました。彼の説教は私の人生に非常に大きく影響しました。私はこの教会が好きでした。会員同士の絆が強く家族のようだったからです。神が自分の人生の中におられると感じてとても幸せでした。前職のときと比べてさらに自信がつきましたが、音楽、ピアノレッスン、幼稚園の仕事のスケジュールが次第にきつくなって、またもや働き過ぎて憔悴し、より高給のフルタイムの音楽主事として招聘してくれる教会があったこともあり、神様の導きと思って行くことにしました。今でも楽しかったジョーンズバラでの経験を思い出すぐらいですので、後にジョーンズバラを去ったことをよく後悔したものです。

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March 18, 2016

♪Just a Re-Note from Rennie #249 2016/3/18

I don’t know how I managed to play for the piano recital, only that I remember being thankful for my experience in playing hymns at church for congregational singing, where I learned to keep playing, in steady rhythm not stopping to correct notes. I was relieved when it was over, but very depressed and disappointed that I could not have played better. Yet, there was a greater shock for me when the father of the student asked the school board not to renew my teacher’s contract for the following year. The school president was very upset telling me he was very sorry to lose such a good public school music teacher, but the man was a School Board Member and he was forced to follow the decision. What I did not know at the time was that God had something better in store for me. As the famous idiom attributed to Alexander Graham Bell says: “When one door closes, another opens.”
While I was still hurting from this experience and wondering about my future, God opened the door to another experience. I had a call to visit the First Baptist Church in Jonesboro, Louisiana. As I mentioned earlier, at this time there were very few women serving in churches as paid Ministers of Music and I do not remember if my title was Minister of Music or Music Director, but the church called me to lead the Church Music Ministry. I again felt the mysterious way in which God moves. I wanted to follow God’s call to serve Him through music and here He had opened a place to begin. I realized that if my precious job had not been terminated, I would not have had this opportunity. I was able to serve in leading Church Music at the First Baptist Church in Jonesboro for two years. During this time, I was supported and encouraged by Dr. David Mason, a wonderful pastor. I recall many wonderful experiences at this church under his leadership. However, I was also asked to teach piano to supplement the salary. This experience in teaching at Newton gave me more experience in teaching piano, and since this was also during my working hours at the church, I accepted and enjoyed it gaining more confidence.
Later, since the church wanted to open a day kindergarten and there was no teacher, I was asked to teach the kindergarten. Though in my music training I had studied about teaching music to kindergarten age children, once again, I felt out of my realm with no experience or training in beginning or teaching kindergarten. I went to a nearby city to observe kindergartens, getting information about Kindergarten training and curriculum. Though I felt unqualified, I enjoyed the year of teaching Kindergarten and learned much during the experience, which I feel was another experience in preparation for my later ministry. I loved the children and the parents were very cooperative and the church very supporting. I had many joyful experiences, which helped me grow in faith and confidence in God’s leadership. “Then you will call to me. …And I will answer you.” Jeremiah29:12

♪レニー・リノート    (翻訳:宇賀治潔) #249 2016年3月18日
私がそのように苦い経験を引きずりつつ将来に不安をもっていた頃、神は別の経験へと導くドアを開いてくださいました。ジョーンズバラ(ルイジアナ州)のFirst Baptist Churchから電話があり、話があるから一度来て欲しいと言われました。以前にも書いたように、当時は教会で有給で働く女性の音楽牧師もしくは音楽主事は非常に稀でした。役職名が音楽牧師だったか音楽主事だったか忘れましたが、とにかく教会の音楽ミニストリーを指導して欲しいとその教会から頼まれました。神のなさり方はとても不思議だと新ためて思わされました。音楽を通して神に仕えることで神の召しに応えたいとずっと願っていましたが、やっとその道が開かれたのです。私の大切な仕事が取り上げられなければこの機会は得られなかったのです。私はこのFirst Baptist Church で教会音楽を二年間指導させていただきました。その間、素晴らしい牧師であるデービッド・メイソン博士が私を支え、励ましてくれました。彼の指導の下、私はこの教会で数多くの素晴らしい経験をしました。しかし、そのあと給料を補うべく、ピアノも教えて欲しいとも頼まれました。ニュートンでピアノレッスンをした経験があったので、今回は、教会での勤務時間中での働きであったこともあって、依頼を快諾して喜んでピアノを教えました。ピアノレッスンを受け持つ自信も増しました。
後に、その教会が教会付属幼稚園を開くことになり、先生がいなかったので、私が幼稚園の先生もすることになりました。幼稚園の年代の子どもたちに音楽を教えることについて、音楽トレーニングの一環として一応はカレッジで教わりましたが、幼稚園を開園したり教えたりした訓練も経験もなかったので、またもや荷が重過ぎると感じました。私は近くの大きな町に行って幼稚園を見学し、幼稚園での訓練とカリキュラムについて情報を収集しました。自分には資格がないと思いつつも、幼稚園で教えた1年間は楽しくもあり、自分にとってよき糧となりました。今から思えば、このときの経験が自分の今後のミニストリーの準備になりました。私は子どもたちが大好きで、親御さんたちも非常に協力的で、教会もよく支えてくれました。私は多くの楽しい経験をし、そのことで神のお導きに対する私の信心と確信が大いに強まりました。「そのとき、あなたたちがわたしを呼び… 祈り求めるなら、わたしは聞く」(エレミヤ書29章12節)。

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March 10, 2016

♪Just a Re-Note from Rennie #248 2016/3/10

As I wrote in the previous Re-Note, I was asked to teach elementary school music at the Newton MS Elementary School. It was a nice little town, and I enjoyed attending the First Baptist Church on Sundays when I did not go home on weekends. I lived in a 2LDK apartment with 3 other teachers. I do not recall what we did for entertainment, because it was such a small town and there were no televisions then. Anyway I had very little free time to think about entertainment.
Before I share a difficult experience, let me share a pleasant one during my year. There was a small ragged barefoot boy in one of the classes, who loved to sing and at each music class time, he sat up straight, singing in a beautiful voice. As winter came, I became concerned about without shoes in the cold weather, so I asked his homeroom teacher if I could get permission to buy him some shoes and she said if I would do it quietly, she would help me. One day I asked her to keep him after class and I had him draw his foot on a piece of paper. Later I had her give him the shoes without him knowing where they came from, and I shall never forget his shining smiling face the cold day he came to school wearing the black shiny shoes I bought for him. It seems his voice was even more beautiful and I thanked God that I could rejoice with him.
I mentioned that I was asked to teach piano to children. However, I was also asked to teach piano to a high school student who was much more advanced than I. Her parents had been taking her to a city quite a distance away to study with a professional teacher since she was a child and they wanted me to teach her weekly in between her monthly trips. I tried to refuse explaining that my qualification was public school music, but they were very nice, requesting I only tutor her for one year in preparation for her recital. This was quite different from teaching children to read music, correcting their notes, rhythm and sound. I had no idea what her teacher was teaching her and did not want to confuse her with different signals, so having no idea what to do to help her, I just sat and listened as she played the difficult compositions. I was very tense, waiting anxiously for her graduation. However, for her recital her piano teacher chose a two piano composition by Liszt and asked me to play the second piano part. Rather, they did not ask me, they commanded me to play. I was forced to learn the music in a very short time, whereas she had been rehearsing for over a year. Also teaching public school music and piano lessons all day left very little time to practice before the janitor locked up the school. Even though I explained the situation, requesting her teacher play the second part, they would not take no for an answer. It was very painful for me, but, a much more painful experience was ahead and though I did not know why, God did.
“I know the plans I have for you…to give you a future and a hope.” Jeremiah 29:11

♪レニー・リノート    (翻訳:宇賀治潔) #248​ 2016年3月10日
前回のレニー・リノートでも書いたように、私はNewton MS Elementary Schoolで小学生に音楽を教えるようにと依頼されました。ニュートン(ミシシッピー州)は小さい素敵な町で、週末に家に帰らないときは、日曜日ごとにFirst Baptist Churchの礼拝に出席しました。私は他の三人の教師と共に2LDKのアパートに住んでいました。小さな町で、当時はまだテレビも無かったので、どのように余暇を楽しんだか覚えていません。いずれにせよ、毎日忙しくて余暇を楽しむ暇などありませんでした。
以前に子どもたちにピアノのレッスンをするように頼まれたと書きましたが、私よりもピアノがもっと上級の高校生にピアノを教えるようにとも頼まれました。彼女の両親は、彼女が小さいときからプロのピアノの先生に教わるために遠くの大きな町まで彼女を毎月一回連れて行っていました。それで、その町に行かない週は毎週彼女にピアノのレッスンをして欲しいとのことでした。私には公立学校で音楽を教える資格しかないことを説明して断ろうとしたのですが、彼女の両親はとても素敵な人たちで、彼女のリサイタルの準備のために1年だけ彼女の家庭教師になって欲しいと頼まれました。これは、子どもたちに楽譜の読み方を教え、音やリズムの正確さとは全く分けが違います。プロのピアノの先生が彼女にどのように教えているのか見当も付かず、別のことを言って彼女を混乱させないようにと、どのように彼女に教えたらよいか分からないままに彼女が難しい曲を弾くのをただ座って聞いていました。私は非常に緊張し、ひたすら彼女が卒業するのを待ちました。しかし、彼女のピアノの担任はリストのピアノ連弾曲をリサイタル用に選択し、私に第二ピアノを弾くようにと頼みました。正直、頼むというよりはほとんど命令でした。彼女が1年以上かけて練習してきた曲を非常に短期間でマスターするようにと強制されたのです。一日中、公立学校の音楽を教えるかたわらピアノのレッスンもしていたので、学校の管理人に締め出されるまでのピアノの練習時間はごく僅かしか残されていませんでした。この状況を説明して彼女の担任に第二ピアノを弾いてくれるよう頼みましたが、全然聞き入れてもらえませんでした。これは私にとってとても辛いことでした。しかし、もっと辛い経験がその先に待っていました。なぜかは私には分かりませんでしたが神は知っておられました。「わたしは、あなたたちのために立てた計画をよく心に留めている。... それは将来と希望を与えるものである」(エレミヤ書29章11節)。

meekmeek at 17:26|PermalinkComments(0)レニー先生 

February 28, 2016

♪Just a Re-Note from Rennie (College #6) #247 2016/2/28

After a lapse, skipping from College days #5 (Re-Note #236) on 2015/7/17 to write about our USA trip, in this Re-Note I will return to College days #6.
Graduation time was nearing and still I did not know what direction my life was to take. As I prepared to leave college, separating from my roommate, friends, and prayer-mate I felt very lonely, and deeply concerned about my future. I began to wonder what God was planning for me. I knew that I felt called to serve God through music but I had no idea how it would be possible. Since Foreign Mission Board did not send Music Missionaries, that door was closed. At that time, churches had just begun calling Ministers of Music as a full time vocation but there were no women serving in that position, so that door seemed closed also. I was also saying goodbye to my boyfriend and knew that God’s leadership at present did not include marriage. I wondered what God had in mind since all doors seemed to be closed.
During my last year at college, my father had become ill and had resigned the pastorate. I returned to my parent’s home in Laurel, Mississippi where they were living in a small house owned by my sister and brother-in-law. I did not know how to search for a job and it seemed like “time stood still”, just a time to “Wait for the Lord.” (Psalm 27:14) But this time, I did not have to wait long. Even before summer ended, I received a telephone call with an offer to teach public school music in the elementary school at Newton Mississippi. Since I had studied public school music in college, I accepted the job. I enjoyed teaching the children and gradually became experienced and confident in the job. However, since there was no piano teacher, the school asked me to teach piano lessons. Though I had taken piano lessons as a minor subject, I had no professional training in how to teach piano, nor did I enjoy teaching it to children. It was straining on me to teach public school music all day and then teach piano lessons to children in the afternoons after school leaving only evening for lesson planning and grading. However, I recall how happy I was when I received my first salaries, and in one year I was able to repay my college scholarship loan and help pay for my parents living expenses.
I have enjoyed writing about my childhood and youth. But as I enter a new stage of my life as an adult, I realize that one of the most difficult things to write about is one’s mistakes and failures. I was taught that we are “to learn from our mistakes” but sometimes it is difficult to know how to apply what can be learned from failures. In definition: “to qualify as a mistake, the error has to be something that the person making it knew better.” (Bill Fawcett in “100 Mistakes That Changed History”) “Failure is omission of expected action”. It hurts when we do our best and are punished because “the best was not what was expected”.
“Why is my freedom judged by another’s conscience” I Corinthians 10:29

♪レニー・リノート    (翻訳:宇賀治潔) #247 2016年2月28日
これまで自分の子どもの頃やユースの頃の話しを楽しく紹介させていただきましたが、大人になって人生の新たな段階に入ると、間違いや失敗も多くなり、必ずしも楽しく紹介できない話も多々あります。「間違いから学べ」とはよく言われることですが、失敗から学んだはずのことをどのように応用するかは必ずしも容易ではありません。定義によると、「間違い」(mistake)とは、「いけないとわかっているのにやってしまう」であり(ビル・フォーセット著「歴史を変えた100の間違い(100 Mistakes That Changed History)」より)、「失敗」(failure)とは、「期待された結果が得られなかったこと」です。最大限努力しても、期待された成果が得られなかったということで非難されるのはとても辛いことです。「どうしてわたしの自由が、他人の良心によって左右されることがありましょう」(コリントの信徒への手紙一の10章29節)。

meekmeek at 21:53|PermalinkComments(0)レニー先生 

January 09, 2016

♪JJust a Re-Note from Rennie​    #246 2015/1/10

I would like to start this year with a report on my health. Earlier last year, I received a small gift from friends who were visiting from America. In the bag were 3 memo pads and a pen. As I took them out and read the scripture verses on them, one was from Ecclesiastes 11:9 “Be happy and let your heart give you joy.” I realized this is the theme from which I have lived most of my life, but did not realize where I had developed this characteristic. I thought my parents planted this thought in me, but perhaps it is a gift from God. Keigo often says he is envious of me because I can always “enjoy myself” (enjoy life regardless of the circumstances). I answered, “Life is too short and important not to enjoy the moment.” “The joy of the Lord is your strength.” (Nehemiah 8:10) I pray that God will give me strength to keep joy in my heart, so my heart can give me joy.
In August, I was diagnosed with “AFL” (Atrial Flutter) which is a different type of cardiac arrhythmia from AF (Atrial Fibrilation ) which I had in Singapore in 2010. My pulse beat, which had been in the 40s suddenly jumped to 130. The doctor suggested I have a Catheter Ablation, so I was hospitalized and on August 13 had the ablation. My pulse rate returned to normal and now with medication my irregular heartbeat has also settled down. My heart is getting old, but I would like to keep it beating awhile longer.
The word for heart in English is used two ways: cardiac heart and emotional heart. I feel like this scripture may include both. It is hard to be happy when my pulse is so high I feel like my heart is in my throat and my whole body is shaking like I am on a rollercoaster going over the top. This reminds me of an experience that I think I shall never forget (even when I get dementia): going down through the black hole at Water World in Dallas, TX. Even then I had cardiac arrhythmia and Keigo was worried about me taking the slide. I remember climbing up to the top and Keigo asked, “Are you sure?” I looked down and said, “I can’t quit now. I can’t climb back down those stairs.” So I climbed in the hole and said, “Here I go! Enjoy!” And I did! It was great! As the water carried me down through the dark hole in the pipe, I floated round and round watching the flashing colored lights shining into the darkness and listening to the fast, loud exciting music. As my heartbeat hammered in my chest, I felt a joy and excitement that I cannot express. When I splashed down into the pool, the water felt so refreshing, bringing me back to reality and to the assurance that my heart was still beating, leaving me with a slight feeling of disappointment that the experience was over. Welcome the New Year with joy in your heart! “Be happy and let your heart give you joy.” Ecclesiastes 11:9
♪レニー・リノート    (翻訳:宇賀治潔) #246​ 2016年1月10日
英語の「heart」には、「心臓」という意味と「心」という意味があります。この聖句に出てくる「heart」という言葉も心臓と心という二つの意味を含んでいると思います。脈拍が非常に高いときは、とても喜んでいられる状態ではありません。心臓が口から飛び出しそうで、まるでローラーコースターに乗って次第に頂上に近づいている感じで体全体が震えます。そんなときは、私の一生忘れることのできない(認知症になったとしても)経験を思い出します:テキサス州ダラスのWater Worldで暗い穴の中をスライドして降りたときの経験。その時も心不整脈があって、恵護さんは私がスライドをすると言ったので心配しました。階段を上って一番高いところに到達したとき、恵護さんが、「今なら止められるよ」と言ってくれました。しかし、私は下を見て、「もう遅い。この長い階段を今更歩いて降りることはできない」と答えました。それで、穴の中に入り、「出発!さあ楽しもう!」と言いました。私はやりました!最高でした!水に運ばれてパイプの中の暗い穴の中を滑り降りました。右や左にカーブしながら様々な色の光が暗闇の中で点滅するのが見え、速くて大きな音のエキサイティングな音楽が聞こえました。心臓がバクバクし、言いようもないほど喜び、興奮しました。水しぶきを上げてプールに着水したとき、プールの水が清々しく感じられ、急に現実に呼び戻され、まだ心臓が動いていることに感謝するとともに、お楽しみがもう終ってしまったことが少し残念でした。心に喜びを持って新年を迎えましょう!

meekmeek at 21:44|PermalinkComments(0)レニー先生