Friday, March 15 was the last day of school at the elementary where our team has been teaching English one hour a week. Kyle has been assisting our teammate Kara in 6th grade and Danae has been teaching in 4th grade. We’ve covered topics like objects in the classroom, rooms in the home, and a few verbs, and for our last class period, we told the story about Creation. The concept of God creating the world is totally foreign to their Buddhist minds, so when sharing the Gospel, a good place to start is at the beginning.
Every school in Thailand is supposed to have an English speaking English teacher, however, many schools, like this one, can’t afford to pay them. This school has an English program, but no native English-speaking teacher, so the principal has been very appreciative of us volunteering our time for his students. He and the teachers treat us royally, giving us an abundance of fruit and drinks after each class, and he even took us out to a nice dinner one morning after class.
About a month ago, he asked if we could teach his students about our religion. Now keep in mind that this is a Buddhist school on the temple property. We jumped on this invitation and planned our “religion day” for the last day of school. We had games, an obstacle course, crafts, water coloring, and bracelets telling the salvation story. Several of the youth from Bethel church helped us and told Gospel messages while the kids worked on their crafts. Then we gathered all the children for an assembly. We retold the Creation story and acted out the Good Samaritan. We told them that we believe that God wants us to love him and love others. The kids repeated (shouting at the top of their lungs) John 3:16, and sang “Awesome God.” We asked permission from the principal if we could do these things, and he agreed as long as we didn’t make the children pray to receive Christ.
As we were planning this event, I was kind of in awe that we were actually going to preach the gospel at a Buddhist school. I mean, who does that? How could this be possible? Only by the power, grace and favor of God. We pray that the seeds planted that day will take root and produce a hunger in these kids. We pray that they will seek out Christians who can answer their questions. And we trust that God will continue the work He begun in that school. We are finished teaching there for the summer, but God’s not finished. No, He has just begun!