I must be stuck in a stage of reminiscing recently, because I am once again opening up with a story from my days as a child.
I went to a private school as a child, my mother worked there and so it seemed to be the logical choice for me to go there. In my normal day to day life I figured out who to stay away from and who it was ok to talk to. We occasionally would have new kids come in throughout the school year, or even at the beginning of the school year just like any other school would. You would sit and try to figure out if they were “going to make it” or not, based on how “cool” they were, at least I did.
One such student was named Scott. Scott was in my class but seemed to be about a foot taller than me and quite a bit larger. He was a gentle giant though. He was very tender-hearted and it wasn’t long before I figured out that Scott was going to be an easy target for some of the older kids. Scott was about as big as some of the bigger kids and yet he was so tender hearted. Scott probably had a little tougher time learning things than others as well, and once again that was another strike against him in the social ring of the school.
Scott had been at the school for a couple of months, and I am not sure how the current situation came about, but it did. I went out to the playground one day to enjoy recess. I am not sure why, but there didn’t seem to be too many other children out playing. I came upon some of the older kids picking on Scott. I told them to stop but was completely ignored. Soon enough they had pushed poor Scott to the ground, now remember Scott was just as big as some of these other guys. They began to kick him and yell at him. Big Scott was crying at this point and covering up to try to lessen the damage.
I had enough.
I could have gotten a teacher, but between the backwards way my brain works sometimes and the thought that I wanted this to end sooner rather than later, I had to make a decision.
I ran up to the biggest one of them, and I hauled off and kicked him square in the butt.
This had a much more profound impact than me telling him to stop.
He turned around enraged and I bolted.
He and his friends came in hot pursuit.
I was never so happy to be a quick little kid.
I darted towards the swings because I knew if I ran full speed and grabbed the pole I could make very sharp turns quickly and that bought me some time. Then through the swings because I was smaller and a little quicker, then a full out run to get as close to the building as I could.
In the midst of my escape a teacher walked out and saw Scott on the ground still and crying, me (I believe I was in 2nd or 3rd grade) being chased by a bunch of much larger (probably 5th or 6th graders) boys knew that there needed to be an intervention.
“HEY!” pause as Adam feels a flood of relief, “What is going on here!”
I didn’t hesitate to elaborate on the situation.
I was saved from a certain beating! Scott was tended to and I was hauled off to the office to get the situation straightened out.
In our Christian walk we often forget the escape that we have experienced. We forget that Christ pulled us out of the mess. We forget that He is the one who put a stop to the ensuing doom that we faced. In that, when we forget what He saved us from, we belittle the value of our call to go and tell others who are facing the same doom of the rescue that is available for them.
We have escaped, but it is very important that we relay the message to others who are still captive. We live in love, but in order to do that we had to escape death. Others need to experience this love! We ran for dear life to grab a hold of the safety in Christ (and so much more), and we hold tight to that love, but we are also called to reach our hand out to those who need to know and grab as many as we can and pull them to safety.
The gratitude I felt when I heard that teacher speak changed everything about that situation. I could finally stop running, could communicate with someone who could help me, and had hope for a better future. The proof of our gratitude towards Christ should be able to be seen (as evidence) to those around us as well.
Everyone should see clearly that we don’t live in fear, that we can communicate with God, and we have a hope for a better future as well.