This evening I said good bye to my 10 Russian-German ESL students. We’ve been together for the last 17 days. At every break time, I’d open windows that they’d closed. ( I think Slavic culture dislikes drafts.) In every class time, I’d be as winsome and active as possible to distract them from talking to each other. They got better at conversation and they learned lots of vocabulary.
The ironic thing is that the ones who were the noisiest, least conducive to studious atmosphere–they’re the ones I’m sorriest to let go. It’s the lively ones that charm me, not the prim, perfect ones. Maybe it’s because I feel the most affinity to the noisy ones. The sparkle in their eyes meets mine, and we become allies, and I’m sorry they’re leaving. I so much want them to have seen Christ. To feel the breath of His love and gentleness and bubbling joy. I think they get little enough love. I like to think they can learn English vocabulary from someone else, but maybe no one can love them like Jesus and I can.