Wednesday, 5 August 2015

Week 5: Monkeying Around

Last Thursday was an interesting one. Mark and I were asked to be on the judging panel for a poetry competition at the school. A number of the younger children performed songs and dances such as Old MacDonald and the Hokey-Cokey, which was very sweet but left me wondering if anyone knew what a poem was.

After it had all finished, I was asked to teach History to a class of children around the age of 12. I had usually avoided teaching the younger years but I agreed to go ahead anyway. After I had failed to get the class engaged through a starter game and activity, some of the children decided to start doing the opposite of anything I said. I decided that the easiest thing would be to get the deputy head, not really thinking about the kind of punishment that would be administered. Teachers came in to deal with misbehaving children and ensure that everyone was ready to learn. At the end of the school day, the kids who had misbehaved came up to me in tears and apologised. I realised then that my decision to go to the deputy had ultimately led to physical abuse…

The following day was the orphanage manager (Norbert)’s birthday. All the kids were happy because it meant they got cake! I had the crazy idea of getting one of the children to dress up in my monkey onesie and deliver a birthday card to Norbert on my behalf. To my amazement, he agreed, although he said afterwards that he was afraid that Norbert wouldn’t be too impressed. At least the children found it funny!

The boys in their dormitory (note the triple bunk beds!)

I made a start on my two University projects this week – interviewing the older boys at the orphanage about their education and about their expectations of future life in India. One of the older guys who grew up at the orphanage was an enormous help with arranging interviews and translating for those who struggled with expressing themselves in English. At one point a power cut came midway through an interview, which suddenly made everything very awkward so we decided to finish it the next day. Overall it’s been really exciting and I’m looking forward to learning more about life here!

In other news, Mark’s been really excited about the number prophetic words that have been spoken over his friends at Oxford University in recent weeks. In a variety of places, from the UK to Bethel Church in the US, there have been loads of believers saying that God is going to lead a revival amongst young people in Oxford. Mark, who helps to lead Just Love with other students in Oxford, has been buzzing and really hopes that people will come to know Jesus.

Another photo of the beautiful fort, with Ganesh (one of the boys at the ashram)

We're fed very well here!

Praise Points:

  • Thanks for another week of building stronger relationships with the teachers and students, having good conversations and playing games.
  • Thanks for being able to read Bible Stories with the children (we did Daniel and the Lions last time!)
  • Thanks for the exciting prophecies about Oxford!

Prayer Points:

  • Prayer for wisdom in understanding how to deal with rewards and punishments at school.
  • Prayer for perseverance with teaching, especially when the children only want to memorise or copy information.

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