Costco and the Bible

Deborah St. Lawrence


Heath Hubbard met Ryo at Costco. About 10 years ago, Ryo studied English at a church in America when he was in the U. S. for school. He was interested in studying the Bible, so they began to meet.

As they studied the Bible together, Ryo said he’d actually become a Christian, was baptized, and became part of the American church where he’d studied English. However, soon after he returned to Japan, he stopped going to church. He said he didn’t have the same kind of community he’d experienced in his American church.

As he told Heath about his past experience, he said his belief in God was only about 30%. Ryo struggled to believe in God anymore. After this admission, each week Heath asked Ryo where his belief stood. Every week, though the percentage increased, it seemed getting to 100% would take a while.

In the meantime, Ryo attended many events offered by ETEAM and the Hubbards’ summer interns. They also continued their weekly Bible study.

Recently, Heath asked, “Where are you with your relationship with God?” Ryo responded, “I believe in God 100%! Thank you!” He also said, “I believe it was God’s will for me to meet all the teams from America.”

Ryo has found community through the one-on-one and group Bible studies. In July, as they held their group English Bible study at a local hotel, they welcomed a visitor. Heath told her she could have the Bible she was using. She said she’d never read a Bible before.

Ryo began to tell the girl how excited he was she came, then said, “Heath told me to read the book of Matthew. It will really help you understand the story of the Bible.”

What an encouragement to see Ryo walking with the Lord again…in a community where he is encouraged! How exciting to see him encourage others in their walk with the Lord and welcome new people to the group! The Hubbards are excited about what God is doing in so many lives and to be starting a new church with people like Ryo.


Download and watch Heath share this story in his own way or watch it on our website.


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