I recently started teaching our pre-teen Sunday School class, and the first week of class I had a student named Alex who truly touched my life. He was a super smart kid with a lot of charisma and a little bit of a rebellious streak. However, there was something special about this kid. I remember being so aware in the moment of how much Jesus loved him.
I found out later that this kid lives on the street, and because they moved recently, the family from our church that he occasionally lived with does not know where he is or how to contact him. I know nothing else of his story than this, but it was clear to see in his eyes that he has experienced a lot in his short life. He entered my life for one short Sunday School lesson and I have not seen him again.
In our class we have taken a picture of every student to put on the wall, and Alex is no exception. I proudly hung his picture there. I want him to know that if he ever finds his way back, that he has a place to call home in my class. I want him to know that he has a family who loves him and values him. I don’t know, but I wouldn’t be surprised if we are the only family he truly has.
Alex’s visit also reminds me that we must be prepared in every circumstance. We never know when the hour we have with someone may be the only hour we ever have with them. We never know the impact that hour could have on his or her life. As a new teacher, I just naively assumed that all the kids who came would be attending regularly. I never knew that Alex would leave as quickly as he came. I don’t know where this sweet 11-year-old is sleeping tonight, but God knows, and I can be sure that my prayers will reach him.
And I pray that he will find his way home.