By Miguel Tapia
I was born and raised in Saltillo Coahuila, Mexico. I attended school there. I come from a Catholic family of four brothers, three sisters, and my parents.
My father always provided a roof for the family, food, and education. My mother dedicated herself to the home. I thank my parents and God for that. Maybe at one time, I did not understand how blessed I was and have been.
I made the decision to emigrate to the United States because where I lived there were not many opportunities for work and growth. Saltillo is the capital of my state and is heavily populated. With so many people, there were not as many opportunities.
At first, living in the U.S. was very difficult – another language, another culture, and new lifestyle. I arrived in Cairo in May 1995. In September, English classes began. That’s where my story began in the USA.
The English classes helped me a lot, not only in learning English, but also in my faith. My teachers taught me about God’s love for me and thanks to that, I became a Christian. Now, I follow the example of what I learned in English and the word of God. Not only did ESL (English as a Second Language) help me improve my English, but I made many friends through the ministry. Over time, I was invited to join ESL as a teacher. Since 2004, I’ve been serving the call that I feel from God to use the gifts that He has given me for His honor and glory.
The key to ESL is the personal relationships we have with our students. Even during adversity such as coronavirus, I can use technology (phone calls or text messages) letting them know they are loved and that I am available to them in any situation that they may need me. Thus, I continue to use that to demonstrate the love of Christ to my friends. Even as Christians, we still have our problems. However, God gives us strength to continue in the ministry if we ask Him in prayer.
It is sometimes very difficult to interact with non-Christian workers because they only care about money. If you are good to them, they take advantage of you. They see you as a fool and if you talk about God, they make fun of you. So, I live by example with love and deeds. Sometimes they begin to ask questions and that is how I take the opportunity to talk to them about God’s love and how Christ changed my life. It is not easy, but it is gratifying.
We need more fishers of men and volunteers to grow the Kingdom of God and keep His word. We can pray for internationals. We need to remember actions speak louder than words. A visit to determine specific needs may be helpful. We can show Jesus’ love and what He did for people by being the hands and feet of Jesus.
Matthew 28:19-20 says, “’Therefore, go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Teaching them to keep all the things I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.’ Amen.”
I have been living in Cairo for 25 years. Thank God, I have been very blessed with some very good jobs and with a beautiful church that has welcomed me as family.
Miguel Tapia has been a member of First Baptist Church, Cairo since 2006.