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New Faces, Old Joys

March 4, 2009

They waddled in like helpless little ducks and then stood there staring at me with the most frightened look but one of hope–hope that I would some how make everything okay and help them. I stared back at them feeling just about as helpless as them. Deep breath. Give it a go.

I became an actress today, if I had never been one before. Demonstration is key when words cannot be understood.

Slowly we began to create some form of communication and they picked up words quickly–much more quickly than I remember Korean. I’m not sure who has to have more patience: the teacher or the students, as they wait for me to come up with a good way to communicate clearly.

A challenge this will be, but I know how rewarding it always is…

New faces surrounded me, little bodies, different voices, unfamiliar small people, new runny noses to wipe, and a fresh set of hands to hold. Smiles and smiles among the lost eyes. Thankfully the criers were not in my room. Though, some space cadets were present.

Forty-five minutes writing the letter ‘A’ definitely was a new way to stretch my mind, or perhaps dull my thoughts. There are only so many ways to try and formulate a method of teaching handwriting… I’m hoping that by the time we get to the letter ‘Z’ we will not need such time to accomplish this task.

I thought today, who’s doing the learning? Certainly, I was.

After returning from special activities the kids had made cameras and wanted to take my picture, especially. The title of teacher automatically makes me famous in their eyes. How have I acquired this title anyhow? I have been given so much authority and influence… I think of the little ones that He has entrusted to me and I know that I must be surrendered to HIM.

The bell rang and suddenly I saw a familiar face pop up in the door window. Without thought, tears filled my eyes. My little baby from Kindie is now coming to my afternoon class all grown up. After meshing with strange kids, this little one made my heart jump.

I had to remember that at one point that little treasure was a stranger to me as well. One day these new faces will be dear, familiar loves that have written a smile and song on my heart.

All the trouble, frustration, and strain that sometimes accompany the call of teaching…at the end of the day…it’s worth it when I remember the treasures that God has entrusted to me for a time.

The children filled the room and tears filled my eyes. My co-teacher had to leave otherwise we might have flooded the room with our tears. In the meantime, the kids cracked jokes and incessantly cried out, “teacher, teacher, teacher…” I will have five more months with these kiddos and I know that leaving them will be quite difficult.

And yet, another troop will come along. More smiles, laughter, tears, and memories of transformation and metamorphosis as children so quickly grow up right before your eyes.

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