Sunday, April 1, 2012

Teen incredibly blessed from reading a book

Sometimes God blesses me, and this blog, in mysterious ways. 

I’m a Literature teacher, and at the end of each book, students write a reflection paper/essay about how the book has impacted them. 

Many of you have read my previous post about the assignments my teen students made about romantic relationships.  When they turned in their end-of-the-book reflection papers, they were also so good that I wanted to share them on the blog as well.  However, I was so swamped with work and schedules were so tight that I didn’t get a chance to copy them here.

However, there was this one student who has a habit for turning in his assignments late…as in REALLY late.  Among the submitted backlogs was a reflection paper of Boy Meets Girl which I feature below, as it was submitted when the frantic schedule was dying down and I was able to have some time to post this here. 

It serves as not only a great testimony of what reading some of the “grow books” of The Abba’s Orchard Erdkinder high school program has done for him, but what makes this so beautiful is it serves as a testimony of what kind of a young man he has become, compared to the type of person he was when he first stepped into our halls.

So, here’s his reflection paper on Boy Meets Girl, entitled…

“More than just a grow book”

I feel that all of Joshua Harris’ books should be the standard of how romance should be.  The world today has forgotten what romance should be about and how it should happen.  In a world where morals and good old fashioned common sense has dwindled to the point of extinction, clouded by perversion and hunger for…well, self-satisfaction; again I would like to voice out how his books affected me.  I really appreciate Joshua’s books, considering that his books talk about a topic that most people try to handle themselves…and more often than not, fail at it.

What I’m driving at here is this: this book, Boy Meets Girl, is here to remind us that God is present at every part of our lives, and yes, including romance, definitely including romance.  It’s an assurance that God indeed has a plan for us, and that we would trust in Him that someday he’ll make us meet that person we’re destined to end up with someday and get hitched (haha!).  That, and it somehow guides us, or rather, prepares us for that stage in our lives.  It’s funny that we ask God for salvation and pray to Him to bless the food, but we forget to invite him into our love lives. 

On a personal level, Josh Harris has been a great impact on me when it comes to viewing women, how to behave around women, and how to go about when time will come when I intend to ask someone to allow me to court her.  It also guided me in knowing when the time is right and, most importantly, keeping in mind that I have to keep God at the center of it all.  This is amazing for someone like me, considering that I grew up watching TV and this is exactly the opposite of what they preach…not to mention the fact that during a time in my life when I needed these books, they were not available to me.  But I see now that after all that has happened to me, I still ended up reading these books, and now I can help those who are troubled in these areas.

Well, God-willing, I become someone like Gideon or Job, who really go out of their way to minister to the lost.  Considering I’ve been troubled in these areas, I think it’s only fair that I minister to those who have suffered like me.  This book truly inspired me to teach others what I know, I felt the urge to help those people who need Christ like I did; and learn to need Him more like I do now.  So, this book’s impact (well, all Joshua Harris’ books’ impact, actually) on me is pretty big, because I have changed on how I should view and prepare for romance.  Now, I just have to serve Him and trust that He has a plan for me, someone for me…oh, and it’d be awesome though if she was a great cook.  Just sayin’.

This is coming from a guy who came into the school a troubled Catholic-turned-agnostic teen who, after two years under our care, now has such a love for the Lord and strongly desires to serve Him in the music team of LifeBox, the youth ministry where Gideon and Job lead.  Wow, what a difference.  HUGE difference.

I’m so proud of this submitted paper of his (and maybe God made it late for this purpose).  I’m so proud of his turnaround, grateful for all the fantastic peers and youth leaders (and teachers, ahem, ahem), and most grateful to God from orchestrating all of this to happen. 

He has now moved on, having marched on the school stage last week wearing a black toga with green sash.  I will miss him…in fact, I already do.  Shine bright for the Lord, brother; and thanks for the memories.

PS:  Check out a good list of books by clicking here to see all my articles that recommend good reads.  If you wanna find out more about LifeBox, you can visit their facebook page here.  Also, you can check out more of my articles on youth ministry and the Abba’s Orchard Erdkinder. 

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