Monday, November 24, 2008

Seize the Day!

When I was in fourth grade, I had a really hard time. I was still in public school, and my teacher was horrible. I was very unhappy, and even considered running out the classroom door and all the way home. This was just a fantasy, but one that I thought about often. My teacher was fired at the end of the year after my class got up the courage to go talk to the principal together, and the next year my family decided to homeschool.

My fourth grade class really was a wonderful group of kids. We really became like family that year because of our teacher. It’s not that we became rebels and specifically set out to work against her. Don’t worry; we were much too scared of her to do anything like that. Instead, we relied on each other to get through our day. If you asked me today who all was in my class that year, I think I could name every single one.

One of the students in my class really sticks out in my mind. His name was Doug, and he was a very nice boy. He was taller than everyone, and very quiet, but he could be funny when he wanted to be. I guess you could say our friendship started in the lunch room. I had gotten waffles and sausages, and I couldn’t eat all of my sausages. Doug asked if he could have them, and I said yes. Unfortunately, we both forgot that we weren’t allowed to share food. The lunch lady walked by at just the wrong time, and saw Doug stabbing his fork into my sausage. She began reprimanding me for sharing my food with Doug, and I told her I was sorry. Doug stood up for me, and told the lunch lady that it was his fault: he had asked for the sausage. I didn’t really know Doug that well, but we were pretty good friends after that. To be honest, I was really scared of the lunch lady.

Doug and I weren’t close or anything, but he would tease me, and I would tease back. He was a football fan, and tried valiantly to get me to understand the game. Poor guy, he never did succeed.

One day, we were asked to write a story about a character (or characters) in a book. I chose to do Adam and Eve. I don’t really know why I picked the subject, as it is not my favorite Bible story, but I guess it was the first thing that popped into my head. I wrote my story, used my best cursive, and colored a border around each sheet of paper, and then turned it in. I don’t really remember how this came about, but Doug asked me if he could read my paper. I let him, and as he read, he began to frown. I asked him what was the matter, and he told me that he had never heard the story of Adam and Eve. To my 10-year-old mind, this was shocking. I thought everyone had heard about Adam and Eve! Doug began asking me lots of questions about the story, and I answered them, but not really to the best of my ability. I was very confused at how Doug could not have heard the story, and I didn’t really want to talk about it. I answered his questions, but not with very much interest. I was embarrassed, and I just wanted the subject to drop.

Oh, how I regret that day. I should have looked him in the eyes and told him everything I knew about the Bible. I should have told him about Jesus and His love for everyone who chooses to accept it! I should have done better. My heart aches for what I could have done. I so badly want to go back and change what I did. I could have planted the seeds in him so that one day he could choose for himself to be a follower of Christ. How could I have been so stupid?

My point is, no matter how busy you are, take the time to talk to people about God’s love. Don’t shrug them off and act like it is a burden. You will regret it. I regret it, and I was only 10-years-old. We must take every chance we have to show God’s love to those around us.

I’m reminded of a song by Carolyn Arends that applies to this blog: “Seize the day! Seize whatever you can, ‘cause life slips away just like hourglass sand. Seize the day, pray for grace from God’s hand, and nothing can stand in your way. Seize the day.”

Don’t wait until it’s too late. Seize the day, and spread God’s everlasting love.

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