September 21, 2014

Unexpected Lessons and Blessings

Saturday mornings have changed for us a bit since school started.  I am not home Saturday mornings anymore.  I get up and have breakfast with my 10 year old and husband before the teenagers are moving much and we head out the door to our Korean language classes while Dan heads to the other church to study.  We have been in the class now for four weeks and we are starting to speak a little Korean together.  It is fun studying with my 10 year old each week and he is learning things so quickly.  He tutors me a lot.

I am learning to write in Korean, too.  The letters are so beautiful and the language is a curious one. It's origins came from the desire of a ruler (King Sejong) to make a written language available to the masses.  It was developed in 1443.  It is descended from Chinese to some degree but in China only the highly educated and those in power could write and read their language at that point in history.  The invention of the Korean language made it possible for the masses to be able to read and write a language of their own.  It is truly a language of the people.

The adults have a two hour class and we go hard the whole time.  There are six people in the class and half are beginners, including me, and the other half have been studying for at least a year.  The children study language, sing songs, do art or guitar lessons and play games and they start with a prayer time each week.  We always end the time we have there with a meal together.  We usually have a traditional Korean dish with a soup on the side.  Sometimes the kids get hotdogs.  I always choose the Korean dishes.  They are loaded with veggies and rice.  Two of my favorite things!

One of the best things about Saturday mornings is the way three very different cultures come together and find common ground.  There is me (and my 10 year old)... your typical middle aged American housewife with four kids.  I have spoken mostly English my entire life with a dabbling in sign language and Spanish classes at some point in my adult life.  There are all the teachers and members of the church that come to cook, assist and teach on Saturdays.  They all speak Korean with some who speak at different levels of English proficiency.  Then there are the Spanish speakers.  We are a border town so it is spoken most everywhere you go in the area.  Two of the students are Spanish speakers who are married to Korean spouses and they are there to learn so they can communicate with their spouses families.  One of those Spanish speakers speaks no English at all.

The crazy part is that we all still communicate and enjoy the fellowship time.  We encourage one another and eat meals together and our children all play together.  Saturday mornings are a real bright spot in my week.  I am so glad we decided to learn Korean.  The best part about studying Korean is that I am really learning and getting so much more than I ever anticipated.  God is so smart!

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