Teaching without having to grade is so much fun. In the last two summers, I have devoted the past two summers to ISAAC’s summer internship, sponsored by FTE (Forum for Theological Exploration). Instead of interns paying for tuition, ISAAC offers stipend for their time of learning and driving. It is a great deal, indeed.
Even in two months intensive, when the learners are eager to learn, the power of transformation through pain shines through. Our internship program focuses on crossing the boundaries of EGG (Ethnicity, Generation, Gender) by sending Asian American young adults to African American Churches. Our weekly meetings together focus on increasing interns’ EQ (Emotional Quotient) in its five dimensions: 1) Self-awareness; 2) Self-regulation; 3) Inner motivation; 4) Empathy; 5) Social skills.
What makes this year’s interns so unique? They are all overcomers of challenges beyond their control from early on in life! They are rare and resilient overcomers! Each has gone through their own furnace experiences and exceeded in their education through the heat! Their open and pure hearts draw me near to them. By pouring out their sacred stories and editing out internalized insecurities and false beliefs, they experience what it means to break free from false self-perception, shame and guilt. ISAAC offers a holistic communal learning experience- by journeying together through cooking, sharing meals, and facing our brokenness, we reach greater heights of wholeness. Our interns are learning how to be aware of the interplay of inner shadow and light, as Parker Palmer states in his book, Let Your Life Speak.
It is my joy to devote my life to raising this next generation of spiritual leaders for social impact. Thank you for making Jesus’ teaching come alive to me: “Blessed are you who are poor, for yours is the kingdom of God. Blessed are you who hunger now, for you will be satisfied. Blessed are you who weep now, for you will laugh” (Luke 6: 20-21).