It’s been raining everyday, which covers everything in red soil, and often floods our property. Yet, our life goes on. Our children are just about to start their new school year. “Almost” all our children have passed their previous grades. For two, we are still hoping that they have passed. It’s just that we do not get to know until the school starts on 1st of Oct.
It’s been three years this past August since we started receiving children. If all the children we have received still remained with us today, the number would be more than 40. But unfortunately there have been several children who have found life at Gateway “difficult.” Yet, through ups and downs, we have been experiencing a steady increase in number by His grace.
L-R: Theara, Reak, Vannak and Rine
左-右: ティアラ、 レアッ、 ワナッ、 ライン
What we value even more is the spiritual whereabouts of each individual and its growth— not how fast we grow in number. Many have received Jesus as their personal Savior, but many still have not. When it comes to spiritual growth of the former, it has been a mixture of occasional joy/ encouragement and daily discouragement.
Development of their sense of gratitude helps us to see their growth in maturity. While our life at Gateway is very modest, considering where they are from, they have been given more than enough and all their needs have been met at Gateway. But what we often see in them is lack, of appreciation in general, or none at all.
As many of our children are still young with their minds more immature than their ages, expecting them to be thankful for what they receive might be a little too much. Nonetheless, when they come to Gateway, this is the very first thing we teach and continue to teach: be thankful. It’s a first step forward to get to know the Lord. When they still do not know how to be thankful for visible materials and opportunities, they might find it even harder to be thankful to the kindness of those who support them and ultimately to the Provider who is physically invisible.
Although we understand all children grow in their own unique way at different rates, we sometimes grow impatient and feel it helplessly unbearable to see their unthankful manners. It’s not that they do not learn or grow at all. They do. We have also grown our love and attachment to them.. It’s just that when we play a role of a bridge between those who support them and the children, we strongly feel for the supporters when we see that the children don’t really know how to appreciate the opportunities they are being given by these wonderful families. They deserve more than this. God deserves more than this. This is largely our responsibility. The children are here to learn and we are here to teach. In this sense, we often feel inadequate about ourselves not being able to help them enough to bear good productive fruits. There is still so much more for us to learn as parental figures as well as the leadership, and we need to grow together with our children.
1． That the faith of those who have already received the Lord into their lives will continue to be stronger and stronger, and their walk with the Lord will be richly blessed through our times of worship and Bible study. Also the eyes of those still distant from the Lord will be open even little by little, and they will get closer and closer to the Lord.
2． That the four children we have recently received will settle down quickly, and that God will provide sponsor families to all of them.
3． We will soon start homeschooling our four-year-old daughter Srey Lin. Though Christina will be the primary teacher, Taka hopes to be able to incorporate some of his time as well.
We deeply appreciate that you have been faithfully and patiently walking with us. Thank you so much for your prayers and kind support, through which our children have been privileged to receive His blessings.
Takahito & Christina, Lin & Senoka Miyano