Watch Your Head

Author: Michael Babienco

July 2023

Ding! The glass enclosure for the lightbulb hanging in the middle of our room gave off its distinct noise as I bumped into it with my head, again, while heading out the door.

While on our first train ride in Japan during our two-week exploratory trip, I noticed an unusual sign with the caption, “Watch your Head.” It came with a warning symbol of a stick figure banging his head on the train’s overhead seat storage area. At 6’5”, l expected to be a little taller than the average Joe in Japan. Little did I know, however, that this sign was a prophecy of what I would experience while exploring the country.

Here are some of the ways my height was quite noticeable throughout our trip:

  • I dinged the light fixture in our guest house room with my head so many times that Caitlyn and I memorized the distinct tone of my head hitting the glass covering.
  • I stood a full neck and head taller than a bathroom door at a church.
  • Feeling my hair touch the top of the bathroom ceiling or having to bend my neck a little while in the shower was typical.
  • Ducking under doorways was expected at all times.

Despite the occasional annoyance, I am used to my height difference and enjoy laughing at the predicaments I find myself in. As a missionary to Japan, however, I do not want people to notice me because of my height, different hair color, or because I am a foreigner. I want people to notice me because they see something else that is different: Jesus working in me and through me. He has changed my life, and I want people to have the opportunity to experience His love and the positive changes He can bring to their lives, too.

Will you help us finish our monthly goals so that we can go to Japan and help make an eternal difference in the lives of the Japanese?