Journal January 19th 2010
Vale la Pena
There were three things on my heart this year, to teach the new discipleship book, to teach them how to pray, and to invite them to accept Jesus as their Savior. I knew in His timing it would happen. I’ve been praying for the words to say and the opportunity to speak into their lives. I started the Child Evangelism Fellowship devotional booklet a week or so ago, and the students loved it!!! They beg me to teach the “Wonder” book, and cheer when I announce that it’s time to pull it out. The “Wonder” book lessons have been on what a witness is and what they do. All very good preparation for sharing with them. We recently had a change in teachers, and the administration made the decision to join my two fourth grade sections together. Having all thirty-one students together would lose some of the closeness we developed in our individual sections. I needed to share with the students while we still were in small sections.
Yesterday, we had a great discussion in 4A about sin, how we are separated from God, and how Jesus is the only way. The Lord had been really working on their hearts, and the fourth graders have been very excited and sincerely listening during our discussions. Their hearts were open and sensitive. Today we went and sat under the trees. I started by praying as we most always start, and then explained that I wasn’t sure if they understood what the devotional had been about yesterday. I explained how some people think that if they are “clean” on the outside, then they are good with God.
(I don’t remember their exact words, but it went something like this)
“What would happen if I filled my water bottle with bleach and said ‘Here, Carlos, drink this’”.
“To clean with, it’s a chemical”.
“Ohhhhh…..”. “I would die”. …
“But what if I washed the outside of the bottle with soap and water?”
“I would die, Miss.”
“But what if I washed all around it really, really clean, and dried it perfectly?”
“He’d still die”
“You mean that even if the outside is perfect, in your perfect school uniforms, that it doesn’t matter if the inside is dirty?”
Next, we discussed the difference between believing that God exists and having a relationship with Him. I can know that Carlos Javier’s mom exists, but I’m not friends with her. I don’t have a relationship with her like I do with Ms. Stephanie.
Finally, I explained how Jesus came and took our punishment.
“What if Carlos stole something from the school? And just as he was about to get an Incident Report, Dario said ‘Give me the Incident Report instead of Carlos.” (their eyes got big) Because Dario loves Carlos so much, he will take Carlos’ punishment. That’s what Jesus did. He came and said, ‘Angie, I love you. I’m going to take your punishment. Sara, I love you. Jireh, I love you. I came to this earth for you. David, I love you. Cristian, I came to take your punishment.”
I ended with stating that each person has to make the decision. When we stand before God, he will say “What did you decide?” We will either spend eternity with him or without him. Miguel said, “I want to choose God!” I lead in prayer, and some of the students repeated after me. Later, I asked each student individually, and four students told me it was the first time to ask Jesus to forgive them. David (his parent’s are Lenca missionaries) was happy when I told him that some of his classmates had accepted Jesus for the first time. We made a deal that we would pray for his classmates and we would help them grow to know Jesus more. (we even shook hands on it)
Jesus, did you see Miguel’s face? Of course you did. His whole heart was seen in his eyes. As I talked about Jesus, His whole being was intently listening. You could see his heart in his eyes. Like, he knew this was serious, it was the answer he needed, he was ready for it, here was the hope his heart wanted. His sincerity was evident. Afterwards, I asked him, “Miguel, did you ask Jesus to forgive you?” “Yes” “Was it your first time, or had you done it in the past?” “It was my first time.” Daniela Ordonez “It was my first time.” Marco Antonio: “I think it was my first time. (thinking, thinking) It was my first time.”
Vale la pena!!!! I get so frustrated, and discouraged with teaching. But when I’m in my right mind, I realize that all the stress, uncertainty, changing of classes, misbehavior, everything is worth it, WORTH IT!!!! to have these three students choose Jesus. And to have all the other seeds planted in each students’ heart.
Carlos Javier is so excited about you!! He was my shadow today. He is always talking about choosing you. I sometimes say (after someone uses your name in vain) “Don’t say that please, that’s my best friend.” Now Carlos says “Don’t say that, that’s my best friend.” He’s matured so much, and taken on a strong leadership role in the classroom. He disciplines the kids for me. “Miguel, don’t complain. Sara, be quiet! Miss is talking! Daniela, can you please be quiet? Sit down, sit down!!”
Jesus, I’m so stressed about teaching 6th grade. Today I went in there for 15-20 minutes, and they kept challenging my authority. Jesus, it’s going to be so much work. There’s no way I can do it. I’m just Felicia. Im not one of the disciples, with great faith or special powers. I’m not one of those great people who did all the pioneering missionary work. I’m just Felicia Hind who wants to serve you. Can you take what is little to multiply it? You keep saying you are with me. You said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” (Upmost for His Highest June 4th and 5th) But Jesus, have you heard about 6th grade, and their cockiness, and their desire to always speak in Spanish, and how they want to push the boundaries? “I will never forsake you”. But Jesus they will eat me alive!!!!!! “I will never leave you”. Then you wrote in “King of Glory” by Third Day, “Lord all mighty, King of my heart, King of glory.” If you are really Lord Almighty, and King of my heart and of the world, then you can handle this. “With wisdom beyond measure, my gracious King of Kings.” With your “wisdom beyond measure”, will you teach me how to teach the 6th graders? Stephanie says this is the best thing that’s ever happened. Because you would never give me anything unless it was the best possible thing for me. That’s because it’s true!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Wednesday, January 19th, I met with 4B under the trees. It was a different spirit than 4A. Iris, Fabio, and some of the other students kept commenting, and some were playing with the pine needles. When I finished explaining the same message as I had the day before, I explained that I was going to lead them in prayer. Gressial asked: “Can I pray in Spanish?” I said: “Yes, I’m going to pray in Spanish too.” After praying, I asked them to tell me later if they had asked Jesus into their hearts for the first time. I talked for a bit about how it didn’t have to be in public, but that it could be later. Alejandro burst out: “That was the first time I did that part, I already did all the other stuff. But I hadn’t done that other part before. The ‘Lord of my life’ (Senior de mi vida). Gressial piped up, “Me to. That what Alejandro says.” (So you had already asked him to forgive you?) “Yes, every night.” Alejandro: “I do that too.”
Veronica told me that it was her first time also, but I think she has already accepted Jesus. She says such beautiful things as “I want him to be King of my life. We need to give him our heart, that is the best gift we can give him.”