Friday, June 20, 2008

Middle School Boys Taking Interest in God's Word

Sunday evening and again Wednesday evening I was visited by two middle school students under the pretext of wanting to studying English. One is the son of the proprietors of a local beef noodle soup and dumpling shop I frequent from time to time (my pic as well as the pic of some other foreign coworkers is on their shop wall there-- along with the inscription "even foreigners like to eat here!") . The other boy was his friend, who lives someone immediately behind me.

That first evening, when I asked the other young boy about his family, he said he never even met his mother. Apparently he was born out of wedlock and stayed with the father's family afterward. He has no brothers and sisters. And when I asked him about what his father does, etc. he replied that he doesn't know, because he and his father never talk.

The second visit, after going through some pronunciation drills from one of the many English textbook I keep stacked on my first floor shelves, we turned to other matters. They asked me about my faith, and I had a chance to share with them why Christians pray, how Christians pray, and how they too could pray to God to let them know He is real, and how much He loves them. Like others here, they made a joking reference to "Amen", so I explained what it meant. When they asked if there were any special rituals that had to be kept, I shared how and why we pray in Jesus's name, bridging naturally into an abbreviated presentation of the Beautiful News of Jesus.

The son of the restaurant owner wanted to walk out with my bible. Though not allowing him to do so, I promised I would seek to acquire one for him. Good reminder for me to call today another agency here in Taiwan about purchasing the bible booklets they publish in modern Chinese (They split the bible into its separate books because they rightly observe that working class grassroots people here are intimidated by big books, studying, etc. So the small booklets are accepted much more readily).

I'm looking forward to the boys' next visit so we can sit down and discuss God's Word together. I'm particularly looking forward to asking if they tried talking to God on their own or not.