Thursday, January 07, 2016

A Gift For My

I can't pinpoint it but sometime while coaching at Friendship Christian School, I began giving all new basketball players on my teams a One Year Bible for Christmas, a tradition I retained when moving to WCS. My reasoning for the gift came from realizing the value of this format in getting kids to read the scriptures consistently. Several years ago, I added my teacher's aides to the gift list. Truthfully, I have no idea of how many of these Bibles, divided into 365 segments with a letter from me on the inside cover page, have been presented to young ladies over the two-plus decades. My joy would be in knowing many are used regularly. Even if only a few, it's been a worthwhile investment.

The young lady pictured above is My, my teacher's aide this year. My, pronounced  me, is Vietnamese but due to her parents' business interests, has lived in Japan all her life. I remember meeting her as a freshman, new to Westbury Christian. I was teaching her older sister, Anh, that year during our day's eighth and final period. Anh was finishing work one afternoon after the bell and My came in to wait for her sister. My looked around  and told me she wished this was where she took Bible. Her wish came true and in both her sophomore and junior years, she was enrolled in my classes. Last year, My expressed interest in being my aide as a senior and we were able to work it into her schedule...... and I am so glad we were able to do so. She is an incredible aide. She picks out my clothes for the next day and visits Robert Farrar, our school chaplain, for a few minutes daily. She alphabetizes all our assignments and runs countless errands for me. But the best thing that My, an excellent student and athlete, does is be an example to the 8th graders who I teach during the time she's assigned to me. When I tell you these junior high kids adore her, I'm not exaggerating. They think she walks on water. So do I.

This year, do to some shipping complications, our Bibles arrived too late to give before our Christmas break. Yesterday, I had My borrow the label maker from the office and make name tags for all my players' Bibles and of course, one label with her own name for her Bible. My told me she was really excited about the gift and as we talked, I found out why. She had never received a Christmas present in her life! I was shocked. She confided it isn't really celebrated in Japan or in her family. Deep down, I know that but still, after being in the US for almost five years, and knowing how teenagers can be generous and knowing how incredibly sweet she is, I was sure someone had given her some thing..... but no. And so today, in front of approximately twenty ALMOST high schoolers, I played Santa and gave My her first Christmas present, which she is exploring in the shot above. I didn't have to put on a red suit or go to the mall but I think I did pretty good this year. There's no better gift than the Word of God, for My or me or the world. John wrote, "The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen His glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth." (John 14:6) Maybe the best verse in the best gift I ever gave. Merry Christmas, My.

Applicable quote of the day:
The word of God is very important to Christmas. For unto us a child was born, and we should be reminded of how Christ's amazing journey came to be.
God bless,
Luke 18:1
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