Tuesday, February 02, 2016

The Book

Abigail walked into my classroom before school one day last week, something she often does. One of my favorite students, Abigail is not in my Gospels class until seventh period but my door is open from 6:30 AM on and all are welcome! On this particular morning, Abigail had a present for me. More accurately, it was for my class. This may seem silly but our 8th through 12th graders at Westbury Christian School aren't required to own a Bible. Instead, all of my students use biblegateway.com to read for their daily quiz. It has the advantage of letting our international students read in Chinese, Korean, or Vietnamese along with the English version. Abigail's gift was a Bible she found she possessed. It looked brand new- no name or markings- and she asked if I could use it. Of course! Sometimes our WI-FI is spotty and sometimes a classmate has  a laptop in need of recharging so the old fashioned version of THE GOOD BOOK comes in handy. It was just like Abigail to think of others- it's just in  her nature.

That brings me to Stephen. He joined our 8th grade class at semester, all the way from China. His English is improving but he is amazingly musical, having won a national drumming competition in Beijing last year! (He is also proficient on the piano and guitar with a singing voice to match!) Not only that, his family treated Stephen's teachers at a wonderful Chinese restaurant last week where the food came fast and furious and delicious. Our faculty left stuffed with enough to go boxes for at least one more meal! Stephen is adjusting to a new life in a strange country with a foreign language and peers he doesn't know. But he's getting there and our 8th graders are looking out for him. Yesterday, as we prepared for our second period class and our quiz over  Luke 15 (the Prodigal Son if you weren't quite sure), Stephen asked me where he could buy a Bible and he meant the kind with pages. Well, I just happened to have a brand new one sitting right there! And no cost, either. From Abigail to me to Stephen, the transaction was made. No paperwork and no money changed hands. Easiest deal ever.

I'm not sure why Stephen wanted a paper Bible but he did. I know they are not always easy to come by in his homeland. On my first trip to China, I gave an army officer my copy and it was accepted as a treasure. I think it's interesting that Abigail, I'm positive, has no idea who Stephen is and yet her thoughtful gesture ended up in his hands. My part was easy. In Matthew 10:8, Jesus tells His apostles, "Freely you have received; freely give." I just passed along what Abigail passed along and it was received with joy. The rest of the script is waiting to be written. Maybe it will be another chapter in The Greatest Story Ever Told.

Applicable quote of the day:

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