Teen Makes Christmas Music
By Andrew McChesney
Every year, Miharu Shimizu’s church organizes a special Christmas program in Tokyo, Japan. Every year, Miharu wished that she could participate and somehow share her joy about Christ’s birth. One fall, during her first year in university, a teacher asked her to write the lyrics for a musical.
The musical turned out to be the final exam for all 30 students in her class. Miharu was supposed to write the script and lyrics, while the teacher would compose the music. Then the class would be divided into four groups, and each group would learn and sing the musical.
After some prayer, Miharu put together a short story about Christmas caroling. The songs were filled with praise for Jesus at Christmas. She wasn’t sure what the teacher or classmates would think. None of them were Christian. When Miharu submitted the eight-minute musical, the teacher didn’t change a single word. “The lyrics are very noble,” he said.
As the class learned and rehearsed the musical, Miharu remembered the Christmas program at church. Maybe her musical could be her contribution to the Christmas program.
That Christmas, she played the piano as seven classmates performed her musical at Setagaya Seventh-day Adventist Church, a church for young people in Tokyo. Young Adventists assisted the production behind the scenes.
More people showed up to watch the musical than Miharu had expected. About 75 people crowded into the small church building, overflowing a space where usually only 25 church members worshiped on Sabbaths.
Miharu was delighted. She sensed a bond with the audience. She saw that she and they were sharing the true spirit of Christmas — the joy that Jesus loves people so much that He came to the earth as a baby. Miharu was especially happy that one of her classmates was sitting in the audience. Afterward, the classmate asked for Bible studies.
Miharu decided to compose another musical for the next Christmas. She wrote a musical about how her grandfather became a Seventh-day Adventist. Finding classmates to participate in the new musical proved easy. They liked the previous Christmas musical and were eager to sing again. One of the new participants was the classmate taking Bible studies. Miharu, 19, is praying that Jesus will use her musical talents to draw classmates to Him.
Thank you for your Thirteenth Sabbath Offering three years ago that helped Miharu’s Setagaya Church establish a youth evangelism training center. Part of this quarter’s Thirteenth Sabbath Offering will reach out to more Japanese young people through online ministry.
Produced by the General Conference Office of Adventist Mission. Find more mission stories at adventistmission[dot]org