Tawan is a sweet, 10-year-old boy who lives with his grandmother and often comes to attend Kid’s Church on Sabbath mornings. We first met him at a local government school where we teach English and noticed right away that Tawan has some special needs.
In school, Tawan has difficulty focusing on the lesson. He often disturbs his classmates, and sometimes hurts his teachers to get their attention. He needs someone who can focus all attention on him, but the local schools don’t have the staff to do that. Because of this, he has been left behind. Even at 10 years old, he still cannot read and write. So his grandmother asked me if I could tutor him individually at our learning center to help him catch up.
I have really enjoyed teaching Tawan; just he together with me. I can see that he has a lot of potential to learn and grow. I have also observed how he creates worlds for himself within his imagination.
A few months ago, I went to visit Tawan at his home. His grandmother told me that he had started attending a new school but had not gone that day. He simply did not want to go.
“I heard you are studying at a new school now. How is it going?” I asked Tawan. “Did you make any new friends yet?”
“No, Teacher. I don’t like my new school. It is boring, and I don’t have any friends there,” Tawan replied.
I could feel how lonely Tawan was.
“Tawan, I am your teacher, and I can be your friend,” I tried to reassure him.
Without skipping a beat, Tawan replied, “And Jesus can be my friend too.”
I was so surprised. Before that, I had wondered if I, as his teacher, was making any difference in Tawan’s life. At that moment, I realized that with God’s help, I had assisted Tawan in learning the most important lesson of all—that Jesus is our friend.