When I think of an Asian college student; I see a young man, 5 feet and some change, glasses, carrying books, and racking his brain for the next question he wants to ask me in English.
These observations accumulate just from my short time being here, but I think they are pretty accurate. The usual student loves to study and loves to play video games on their computer. You could almost say the indoors was their friend.
But at the campus I hang out at, there are a select few who break these sterotypes and walk in ‘cool land’. You can always find them at the same place everyday, at the same time. The ‘A Court’.
The ‘A’ court is the basketball court where all the best players play. The court where there are just people for hours, surrounding the court and watching.
Now some of you who know me are thinking “Surely you don’t play there?” Oh, but I do. I don’t play to get better at ball. I don’t play to show off my lack of skills. Ha. But I play there to build relationships with these guys. And it has paid off!
I would probably say for the first month of playing of the ‘A Court’ I didn’t hear a peep of English on the court. Maybe a random ‘hello’ or ‘foul!’. But that was it. Not a word. But then one day I met a guy named Guo. We were on the same team, and after the game we talked for a little bit.
His English was very limited, but hey, I got one them to talk to me. I was very excited for this opportunity.
Over these past months, Guo and I have hung out and played ball together. We have gone out to dinner with each other and had some really fun times.
I have written this long introduction to share this story…
Last week Guo and I ate some amazing traditional food. The cheesesteak. It was really good, and I think he liked it also. While we were eating we were talking about the Bible and what it is. He then said that he and friend found a place that sells crosses and books on Jesus. I was surprised, and also excited.
After our meal I asked him to take me to the bookstore where they were selling these things. It turns out it was right across the street from where we were. So we walked over and checked it out.
I walked in and laughed really loud on the inside. This store was a straight up christian bookstore! It looked excatly like one from back home, only on a smaller scale. Guo and I were walking around the store, and I was asking him to say in English what the titles of the books were.
But then we came across a book that I did not need him to translate. You might have heard of it also. It’s called “The Purpose Driven Life.” He picked it up and started to read the back of it. Right then I knew it was a divine appointment. I quickly grabbed the book out of his hands and brought it to the counter to buy it.
As we walked back towards his campus I gave him the book and asked him to read it. He was really grateful for the gift and promised he would read it while he is on vacation for this next month.
I know that I know that I know, God is going to use that book to bring Guo to Himself. What an awesome thing! Even though his English skills aren’t the best, even though he is a party animal, God’s light is going forth into his life.
When I first started playing on the ‘A court’ it was fun but discouraging at times. But the persistance is paying off, and I have only been able to do that because of the Lord’s direction, grace and strength! It’s a great thing to know His plans and purposes are sometimes hard to see, but He will lead us by His voice and hand!