On a Wing and a Prayer

This morning I woke up early, showered, shaved, ate a couple of pieces of toast with jam (thanks again, Connie) and hopped into the white van with Pastor Sejun. He drove me to Nokyang Station where I caught the 7:45 southbound train on Line 1. I transferred with the masses of commuters to another train at Changdong Station and rode standing all the way to Myeongdong Station where I exited and climbed the hill to Yeomyung School. I prayed as I entered the school building and headed to the art classroom in the basement where we meet on Thursdays to teach English Bible class.

I rearranged a few chairs around the long, rectangular table and wrote out the chorus to Our God Is An Awesome God on the whiteboard. Then I wrote the names Jacob and Esau on the board and a few bullet points about each of these two sons of Isaac to save class time since we have only 45 minutes.

The students entered the room and we exchanged greetings and smiles. A student opened the class with prayer and I taught them the Awesome God chorus. After singing, I told the class how special they are, how that everywhere I went in America people had been interested in them and had wanted to see their faces, and how I showed them the one picture I had of them stored on my phone. I told them that they had people who didn't know them praying for them and loving them. And then I taught the lesson.

The reason I am writing this short blog entry is because of what God did this morning in our class. I was following the curriculum from the Firm Foundations book I use, but God led me to tell part of the story of Jacob and Esau that this book skips over, the story of how Jacob lies to his father Isaac and steals his brother's blessing.

I acted out Jacob putting skins on his arms by grabbing a piece of rough cloth off a shelf and putting it on my arm and then going to the young man seated to my right and made him Isaac and had him feel my "hairy" arm. Then I had him place his hand on my head as if blessing me. I then continued with the curriculum as it is written, and spoke of Jacob ran away from home to escape Esau's anger, and how God visited Jacob in a dream and promised to bless him and his descendents.

I noticed that the young man sitting near the Korean English teacher who helps out with our class was asking her a question. He had a puzzled look on his face. I stopped teaching and looked in their direction. She told me that this young man had a question that he wanted to ask and she prompted him to ask me the question in English. His question was, "If Jacob lied to his father and stole his brother's blessing, why did God bless him?" Not those words exactly, but nearly those.

Hallelujah! God opened the door with that question so that I could tell the class about God's mercy and grace. 

God used my experiences to choose illustrations of mercy and grace that resonated with these students. I acted out my grandmother trying to give me money for no reason other than that she loved me, my trying to not take it because I had done nothing to deserve it, and my eventually receiving the money with gratitude and gladness since it was an expression of her love for me. All of them could identify with that. And we all could easily identify with being guilty and pleading for mercy and forgiveness.

When I prepared this lesson, mercy and grace were not part of my plan, but God had a divine lesson plan in mind. All that was need was for me to be open to the Holy Spirit's deviation from my plan to create the opportunity for the question that led to the real lesson the Lord wanted taught that day.
It's a weird picture, I know, but I felt like I could just fly off to heaven on eagles' wings when class ended. 

The expression "on a wing and a prayer" means doing something with just a bit of hope for success, like trying to land an airplane with the engines on only one wing still working. Today I mean this expression in a different way:

Your prayers gave our class wings. 

We had a successful, Spirit-filled class today because of your prayers. Thank you for praying for our class. Our God IS an awesome God!


  1. Hey Dan. What's a good email address to send you something? Love the blog. We (at least me) are praying for you.

  2. dbdunbar@gmail.com is my personal email address. Feel free to write to me.


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Blue Christmas

Before We Call, God Answers

Friends Like Jonathan