I am an English as a second language person, who is living in the UK and serving in an environment that is full of English speakers. It is a challenge but for me, it is also a healing process.
Today, I was sitting in a coffee shop and having my favourite coffee and trying to prepare my teaching materials for the English class which I am going to teach in a momâ€™s group in Luton. When I was thinking how I can help them to improve their English by making them feel more confident to speak out. Suddenly God revealed something to meâ€¦Well, the day before I still felt nervous to teach English to these moms because I feel I am supposed to learn English instead of teaching English and I also think my English is not good enough to teach people. Who would like to learn English from the person who knows English as a second language??? And I was wondering why I put myself in this situation? Why didnâ€™t God use my gifts to serve people, rather than my weakness? All those thoughts were always coming to my mind and making me lack confidence to see myself as an English teacher, though I knew God wanted me to serve them in this area.
But at that moment when I was plugging away at the materials, God showed me what a privilege it is to teach English for these moms and get involved in their lives by getting to know them. I thought back in my life, the long process of learning English, how suffered when I was learning English at school (I got beaten up and dressed down when I failed the English test). How English could make me feel inferior or hurt by the people who did not have patience to listen to me. Or I felt ignored or not be respected in the conversation when I couldnâ€™t express myself explicitly. How I was so wrong to let English to represent my identity, my self-esteem, my social class, my ability and even myself in my culture. English seemed no longer as a language tool for me to communicate with the people but an IDENTITY!!! Oh, I was living with this lie and suffered by the pains and wounds for many years. I was in tears when I was contemplating these things. But God revealed the problems to me, healed my wounds and I released all those painful experiences to God. Now I am free from the cultural bondage. I thought to myself, â€œI can not let these moms have the same experience as I had before; I need to create a Godâ€™s loving environment for them to learn English. And I am so thankful to God because I can relate to them so well in this area and have this opportunity to serve them.â€