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傳書雙月刊

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2022年10月號.第30卷.第5期.總第179期
宣子起落路
宣教家庭教育行



  若要等教育配套齊備,宣教士家庭才上路,恐怕很多未得之地都等不到福音。十二年前帶着七歲與九歲的孩子重返工場,我夫婦倆深知將面對的困境。

孩子教育先於宣教?
  出發前我們一家在美國讀書,有好心相勸的,說外出宣教後,兒女回美只能入讀一般的社區學院。心理學家作職前評估時測出兩個孩子是資優兒童,明言說我們家應留在香港,不該犧牲孩子接受優質教育的機會。

  感謝神讓我們明白在有限資源下,如何矢志盡最大能力在宣教工場培育孩子。篇幅所限,只分享關於學術方面。

父母錦囊
1 . 閱讀自學
  閱讀等於進食,會進食,沒有不長大的。食慾天生,閱讀習慣卻要培養。

  三歲前媽媽一直用「圖」書跟孩子「伴讀」。三歲後我們用顏色分級的圖書,藉過五關遊戲方式,讓孩子在一年內掌握500個詞彙,成為「自讀」的基礎。

  七歲開始,爸爸跑遍地區圖書館,任務就是選書、借書給孩子。孩子八歲與十歲,我們買了第一代的Kindle,讓孩子在泰南仍能借閱與購買海量書籍,他倆當時一年讀兩百多本書。

2 . 三文四語訓練
  宣教士子女要講工場的語言,所以我倆把孩子送到當地小學,讓他們在語境中學會讀寫聽說泰文。英文是國際語言,選一間比較好的當地學校,有機會能學到好英文。

  中文是宣教士母語,也是最難的部分,我與昱每天以廣東話或普通話家教孩子中文一小時,並盡力以廣東話與孩子溝通。

3 . 度身訂造
  沒有兩個孩子是一樣的,宣教士子女的教育需求與當地小孩不同,更需要度身訂造的課程。孩子在工場讀小學時,感恩小學校長願意協商,裁剪最適合的課程給珵、蘅,讓中、英、泰及其他科目與社交,都能按着他們的進度發展。

恩典有餘
  孩童的小學階段,是培育習慣與能力的階段,感恩珵、蘅在這個階段,非常乖巧。有了好的根基,他們的學習就像自動駕駛一樣,不讓我們擔心,自孩提付出的心力,到中學階段就發揮果效。

  高中時期他們考進了學術水平高的學校,竟然把他們推上了世界知名大學。除了恩典,此處就不贅了。

宣教犧牲孩子教育?
  信仰也好,宣教也好,都是學習擺上自己的過程。屬靈成熟的原理,是不把孩子教育或任何東西,置於主的前面。

  「仗劍行千里,微軀敢一言?曾為大梁客,不負信陵君!」既曾受恩,自當捨身報君。當我們帶着孩兒,為主仗劍千里,在匱乏的旅途上,仍盡心竭力教養,上帝並沒叫我們羞愧,也沒叫祂自己的名受損,孩子在學術的路上,走得比父母更遠更高。神的應許,再一次在我們家庭中體現(參可十29-30)。


宣子心底話 文/Chinny(珵) 翻譯/Jeanie

  每想到宣子們這羣體,腦海乍現的影像總是馬戲團的表演者。我有幸認識的都是才能卓越,性格耀眼,成熟度超乎其實際年齡;而最重要的,是他們終讓我感受到那份歸屬感。他們都是出色的領袖、自身領域裏的能手或偉大的探索者。惟有在回望及治療中,我才發現在我們光芒背後的傷痛與舊患。親愛的讀者,我無意在此文中指責任何人,或把審判的重擔卸在你身上。我只盼能忠實反映那錯綜複雜的童年。或許,這是我渴求被理解的吶喊。

練就馬戲團伎倆
  一個出生在馬戲團的孩子會以為所有人都是用手走路、在單輪車上邊吃邊玩雜耍。16 歲時我已曾在9 個城生活過,就讀過16 間學校,挺擅長倒空自己舊有熟悉的一套再自我模塑成新樣式。雖不明白當地語言,我卻能讀懂人家的身體語言;並能極速運用適當的話語及方式,加速被新羣體接納。這幾乎是我的超能力了。若問我曾否深深地渴求穩定?渴求一個真正能明白自己的人?這是無庸置疑的!無論如何,我已練就一身馬戲團伎倆。

  我14歲時離家去接受更好的教育(編按:作者9 歲時與父母往泰南宣教,14 歲時回港繼續學業),這是我們一家作過最好的決定。以往因着語言障礙,我的學習像是束手綁腳;惟當我終能透徹明白課本內容,我內裏的學術激情被挑旺,學業突飛猛進。這樣年幼就離家意味着我需要成為自顧者,我爭取儘快成長、獨立,以免給正為神工作的父母添煩添憂。然而可悲的是,這種獨立性卻過度發展,令我無法尋找及接受他人幫助。

渴求被理解明白
  匱乏也是我的極大掙扎。自小我已經意識到宣教士沒多少錢。12 歲的我用餐時只會點選最便宜的,或說「不如回家吃吧」,更便宜嘛。16 歲的我已知縱然我擁有知識與聰明,痛心的卻是可能永無法實現理想,因家庭沒法負擔我上大學。爸媽常說「神必供應」,祂也確實有。我現正在一所全球享負盛名的大學念書,然而這城市的生活指數也極高。我必須承認,我永不會有爸媽那份對神「盲目」的信心。就是現在,我仍擔憂每年能否繼續學業,或是否需要更多工作以儲備足夠金錢,以防神有朝一日決定要試驗我。

  我們宣子確實有着獨特經歷,而這「套餐」附帶着莫大的優惠與挑戰。試問誰沒有成長的創傷?今天我常喃喃自語的一句:那是過去了,而這是現在。孩提時我無法掌管自己的生命,只能儘量適應。現在我已可自主並有力量掙脫昔日的模框。讀過以上種種,若你也是宣子,盼你會感到被了解多一點、被看見多一點;若你是圈外人,深盼這文有助你更多明白我們。

 
(香港中信駐泰南:李偉良、韓昱宣教士家庭)


Chinny(珵)英文原文

My mind always envisioned the MK community as a troupe of circus performers. All the MKs I have had privilege to know are so extremely talented, have such distinct dazzling character, display maturity beyond their years, and most importantly, have made me feel as if I finally belong somewhere. They are great leaders, or masters in their art, or great explorers, every single one. Only in hindsight and in therapy have I began to uncover the wounds and old injuries that lie beneath our glamour. Dear reader, I write today not to blame or to pass on to you the burden of judgment. I only hope to be a honest reflection of the complexities of childhood. Perhaps this is my cry to be understood.

A child born into the circus thinks everyone walks on their hands and eats lunch on a unicycle while simultaneously juggling balls of fire. By the age of 16, I'd lived in nine cities and studied at sixteen different schools. Leaving behind everything I knew to mold myself into something new was all I ever knew. I became quite good at that. I read body language like a pro because I couldn't understand the local language. I was extremely quick to pick up the right things to say and the right way to say them in order to expedite my acceptance into each new community. It was almost a superpower really. Did I yearn deeply for some stability? For someone to truly know me instead of the short-lived surface interactions I'd become so good at? Absolutely! But at least I had my circus tricks.

At 14, I moved away from my parents so that I could access better educational opportunities, and it was the best decision we have ever made as a family. In our host country, I was going to school with one hand tied behind my back because of the language barrier. My inner academic went berserk when I could finally understand the textbooks, and I learned in leaps and bounds. Moving away at such a young age also meant I had to take on the role of my own care taker. I scrambled to grow up quickly - to be independent, so that I would bring my parents less worry in their work for God. Sadly, in my case, this independence has overdeveloped into an inability to ask for and accept help.

Scarcity is also something I struggled with hugely. From a very young age, I recognized missionaries do not have much money. 12 year old me would order the cheapest thing on the menu, would say “lets eat at home”, it was cheaper. And 16 year old me knew I had all this knowledge and intellect at my hands, but grieved that it may never be realized because we didn't have enough money to send me to college. My parents said often “god will provide” and he has. I am currently somehow affording one of the most prestigious universities in the world in a very expensive city. I admit however, I was never able to have my parents' blind faith in god providing. And even now, I worry each year about being able to continue my studies and work more hours than I need to to squirrel away what money I can for when god maybe decides to test me.

We missionary children have such unique experiences. The package comes with huge benefits and challenges, but who is without some childhood trauma? The mantra I find myself repeating most often nowadays is : that was then, this is now. As a child I had no control over my life and adapted as children do. Now, I am in control and have the power to break out of my old patterns. If you are a MK reading this, I only hope that this makes you feel a little more understood, a little seen. And if you are looking in from the outside, we want to be understood by you.
- Chinny
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