Japanese celebrate a 1000-year-old festival in November called Shichigosan. “Shichigosan” literally means “seven, five, three.” These are the ages that are considered critical in a child’s development by Japanese. Parents will dress their children in traditional clothing, and take them to the local shrine where the priest will offer a prayer of blessing from the gods.
This affords a unique opportunity for the church in Japan. There is no stronger god than the true, living God; and no greater blessing than that which He gives. Why not ask parents to have the church pray for their children instead?
This past November Sunday, I again had the opportunity to pray for the salvation or spiritual growth of kids gathered at our church, as parents watched and listened. Jesus said, “Let the little children come!” and so we welcome them in His name!