It's already "de facto" that I can use both language, Japanese and English. (Though I recognize that I still need improve in both.)
How I became so-called bilingual is good testimony of God's work in my life. So I thought it be nice to share here.
It traces back to my first year in Middle School.
The year, my mom started going to Calvary Chapel, which was totally new in Okinawa. We used to go to international church prior to that too, but as baseball kid I wasn't really connected to the church.
Upon entering middle school, I joined Tennis club. I wanted some thing new in my sports life.
But much to my surprise, due to the courts construction, the activities were suspended for the whole year!!! So, we couldn't have much club activity which usually involves much of weekend.
Then, I started going to church with my family, of course, reluctantly.
Unlike, former church, that Calvary Chapel had many American attendance. Well, I didn't lik church and that really increased my dislikes.
I had all grumpy looks and not good youth kid who didn't bring his bible on Sundays. (On the contrary, my sister would bring every week.)
So, it would've been very reasonable that leaders gave up on me.
But they did not.
There was a guy named Tim, who is from California and was helping te church. He was in charge of small youth group, probably of 5 or 6 kiks when I first started going.
He wasn't able to speak Japanese, but there were a few kids who could speak both. So, I was listening the messages through their interpretation.
Although, Tim couldn't speak much Japanese, he and other missionaries would try to talk to me which I, at the time, thought very annoying.
Yet, he didn't stop talking to me week after week. And little by little my wall was being brought down.
I was getting interested in him and people there who are so kind to me.
And I thought "if I want to understand them, I need to know English !!"
By the way, my English level at the time was literally horrible. I was around 150th of 180 students on tests. This says it all.
But, I started putting much effort in studying English. I think now I was thinking I can be cool if I could talk to Americans too. haha, funny.
Tim also had very strong desire to learn Japanese. He would sit in Japanese Bible study, and take notes of the words. It was very impressive to me.
Tim and I would hang out a lot. We would play tennis and talked about Bible, teaching language each other.
It was very fruitful time. I was getting solid discipleship.
It wasn't something like using text, or taking 12 steps of course. But it was more like, fellowship based discipleship. We hung out, I observed how he acts and speaks. He shared scriptures and encouraged me to read Bible everyday.
As I grew in the Word, I grew as a Christian.
I was Christian for long time, but I wasn't serious about God and His church. But He took hold of my life. Now I was starting to grow and walk in Him.
My English was improved much. I was able to have minimum conversation in English. The more I practice my English, the more confidence I gained and I wasn't afraid of speaking in English.