So what is Spirited Away about? And what does it have to do with pirates? Well, if I could choose to be any romanticized stereotype loosely based on history and mostly on literature & the media, I would choose to be a pirate. I realize they were nasty, brutal murderers and thieves with very poor hygiene. But according to popular culture, they’re pretty cool and wear fun outfits. So there you go.

Why am I in Japan? The boring answer is “to teach English.” The more interesting answer is “because God has called me to Japan to serve and glorify His name.” Wow. I never really had hopes of going to live in a foreign country. At least, not until about a year ago. Looking back, it seems so obvious that this is where I would end up. I knew that He was preparing me for something really big, some new and completely different situation. Well this is it. I’m moving to Japan.

As for the name, Spirited Away, there is a dual meaning. The more obvious one is that it is also the title of one of my fave anime films by Hayao Miyazaki. But it also means that it’s not strictly my own choice. It’s not like I just decided one day, “Gee, Japan would be kinda fun.” The Holy Spirit had everything to do with guiding me in this direction and changing my heart to be willing to go. It’s not an easy thing to pack up and leave everyone and everything you know to go to a country where you can’t even speak the language. But the Holy Spirit has made me see that I can do this. So I am being spirited away.