It's been an interesting past two days in the Facebook world. So many parents are posting pictures of their kids on the first day of school and many of the parents are former students of mine. I remember the folks at roughly the same age and look for resmblances and see many! My parents never took pctures on the first day of school and rarely at any other time. In the age before Facebook and digital cameras and phones which make anyone a photographer, we lived a more private life. I'm not knocking life on the Internet. Technology leads to revamping of culture. My students are shocked when I tell them some of my friends who lived out in the country in Nebraska were on party lines. To them, that is one step removed from smoke signals and the Pony Express. I'm anxious to see our students at WCS next week, young and old alike. I am blessed to interact with most of the little ones down to kindergarten through our projects to build Christian orphanages in Honduras and Haiti. You might forget their names but believe me, they remember yours!
I'm excited when parents are excited about their kids. You probably know that I have never been married and have no children of my own. People often tell me I have hundreds and now thousands of kids from my teaching and coaching career and while I know what they mean and know they mean well, there is a difference. The past five years, I have been able to watch the same group of kids grow up in Vietnam on my mission trips and for the first time, it's made me wish I had some with my last name. I don't dwell on it and it doesn't make me sad but there is something about having a little one who can't wait to see you or hold your hand. The past two years, I have grown close to sisters Ngan, age nine, and Thuy, age eleven. They come and live in the church building during the summers with many of their cousins. I admit it- they have me wrapped around their little fingers. Do you know why I love them? Because they loved me first. Ngan wept when I left last year; she had tears last week but is getting more control of her emotions. Thuy in the card she is holding above apologized for losing the earrings I gave her last summer and hoped I wouldn't be mad at her. How could I be with that face? Even though I speak no Vietnamese, I can tell when they fight with each other which, not surprisingly for sisters of their ages, they do. But it doesn't last and they get along amazingly well.
You know, I have never met their parents. They were supposed to pick them up a week before I came home but there was an intervention and they let them stay until my departure. I haven't met mom and dad but I know this much- they must be doing something right to have kids that are smart and kind and giving and loyal and obedient and creative. Psalm 127:3 tells us that,
Children are a gift from the Lord;
they are a reward from Him.
Our God was very generous to Ngan's and Thuy's mom and dad. I pray all of you with kids are enjoying your gift- they deserve it!
Applicable quote of the day:
''As the father of two young girls, I have come to the realization that they are just as messy as boys but the dirt that they create around the house is comprised of at least 50% glitter.''
Andrew K. Keller
E-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org