When I was still a boy, I hated Maths so much. Hated to point that I dared to fail it, and of course a long cane is awaiting there for me. Ouch! Those pains were so painful but still bearable because of my stubborness. Both of my parents used to quiz me about Maths and if I can't able to answer it correctly, their nerves sure get fire. It's just ME - I can't seems to comprehend those equations, even a simple fraction! So Maths is my biggest obstacle during my early schooling days.
On that year in 1996, it was the year that everyone have to sit for a national exam. And I remember I kept telling myself so negatively that I am not going to make it. Maths is so so hard. My brain just can't proccess it. Numbers. Crunching numbers really scared me off. Multiplication. Division. Algebra. All of these, my mind just can't hold it. Because of my weakness in this subject, my parents spent alot of their hard earn money on tuitions. Still, it doesn't help at all. And in the end, I got more scolding from my teacher. Sigh... I became very discouraged and such an embarassement to others and to myself.
One day as the months approaching to the end of the year, my good old friend who was much a senior offered a free tuition to me. In return, he will get to come to my house and of course, get a nice dinner from my mom's cooking. I remembered those days we prayed to God first before the beginning of each lesson. He kept thanking God at the end of every lesson that after teaching me. Never once he scolded me. Never once he sneered at me. Never once his face showed frustration. Never once he gritted his teeth. Never once. All he gave me is his patience, his encouragement and his love. My confidence grew from there. He showed me how to do real Maths. He gave me tips on how to read the questions properly and to answer it smartly. In the end, he ignites my mind. A small little spark started from there and my mind went wild like a big fire. Do you know how difficult it is to start a fire with a small spark? I tell you, it takes sheer patience and determination. Finally, I scored a high distinction in my Maths for the first time in my entire life! My score was exceptional - 98% (hey, I'm not boasting, ok?)
So how did I overcome it? No... it's not me, actually. It was my dear old good friend. He is my buddy. He was the one who believe in me that I can do it. He was the one who put faith in me that I can cross over this obstacle. He was the one who gave me strength. He was the one who gather other people around me and gave me further supports. And he was the one who kept praying and thanking to God to help me to make it through. God has intended for him to be in my life. God is the mastermind of everything for you and I, your life and my life, everything under the sun.
So... how to raise a friend up? You will need another friend. Friend who offered his/her heart and a listening ear. Friend who offered his/her prayers and keep thanking God that the fallen one will rise up again. Friend who will love despite the odds. And ultimately, a friend who believes and be there for you in whatever circumstances, even have to be persistent!
“Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work: If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up!” Ecclesiastes 4:8-10