Thursday, July 14, 2011

The Boy Who Didn't Laugh

Every night there are a group of kids that play in the courtyard at my apartment complex.  They usually kick a soccer ball around.  There are four girls and three boys, around six or seven years old that play together.  I see them down there every afternoon when I go into my apartment.  They are just laughing and having a good old time.

One day I stopped and leaned on the rail and watched them play.  They lined up across from each other and kicked the ball back and forth.  It was like watching soccer practice.  The boys had no problem kicking the ball.  They whipped the ball back and forth across the courtyard.  The girls had trouble either getting it to go the right direction or getting any force behind their kicks. 
Two of the boys were continuously on the girls. Yelling that them to kick straight and harder.  They would tease them when they couldn’t get it to them.   I noticed the look on the third boys face.  He had a scowl and looked very upset.  They continued to play, the boys giving the girls and hard time and the girls getting upset.  When the ball came to one of the taunting boys, he picked it up and threw it hard at one of the girls, knocking her down.
This prompted me to immediately stand up from my slouched position.  I was just about to yell at him when out of nowhere I heard, “THAT IS ENOUGH!” The boy with the scowl, leaned over and picked up the ball.  He turned to the boy who had thrown the ball.  “Don’t you ever do that again,” he said.  He reached down and helped the girl up. He brushed her off and put the ball at her feet. 
I watched as this boy then started to teach her how to kick the ball.  He then went to each of the other girls and taught them.  Before long, the other two boys were helping him.  They paired off and helped to teach the girls to kick.
I smiled and silently laughed. 
Too often in life, we laugh at our problems.  We focus on the negative instead of the positive.  We make fun of people.  We decide to give them a hard time instead of helping out or teaching them how to do it right.  It is hard to do the right thing.  It’s hard not to join the crowd.  Be the boy who didn’t laugh.  Help out instead of laughing or making fun of someone.  Be a teacher.

Jesus was a teacher.  Don’t you want to be like Jesus?

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