Thursday has been a full day. It contained a morning chapel time with the Dar El Awlad boys, an hour of tutoring Math and English, Bible school activities (songs and a Bible story), lunch, an afternoon at the local Splash Land, dinner with a leader of the Lebanese Baptist Society, and an evening chapel time after which the boys all received the shoes that members of our church graciously sponsored. Many of our group spent time this evening in the boys “units” (a flat containing about 6 boys and a house mother) while others played basketball with some of the teenage boys. A full day, no doubt.
It wouldn’t take you but a minute here to discover how much excitement, passion, and love these boys have for the members of our team. They love who they are, the games they play with them, the fun they represent for their week, and the attention and care they have to offer. But if I’m honest, sometimes its difficult to keep them focused on the things that we want to communicate most. In my case, they may love that I’m big, tall, have a unique skin tone to their experience, or able to provide a quality toss in the pool, but none of these things touch what I hope to pour into their lives most.
Today was my turn to lead the morning Bible teaching time. The lesson I chose, as short as it may have been, was as much as product of my time and experience here with the boys as anything. It centered around God’s message to Samuel in choosing David as King, one in which we are reminded of God’s concern for the heart. I had spoken with a few boys earlier in the week who wanted to ask me all about American sports and exercise. They weren’t as interested when I began telling them about things I valued more, but it was a meaningful reminder to me of remaining aware of what things I want to communicate most, what things “Mr. Trevor” shares that they’ll most remember, with what they will associate this team that shared life with them for a few weeks.
It’s not a missions problem, but a Christian problem. There is, no doubt, a story around which we are called to orient all things. There is a way of living and speaking and acting that is to be so permeated by who Christ is that it becomes the very theme of our existence. I am reminded today of the power of this kind of living. This kind of awareness is not for out team while at Dar El Awlad, but for us all, everywhere.