As I continue to blog my thoughts as the Spiritual Leader of Immanuel UMC, I will make every effort to properly attribute the sources of my stories, anecdotes, and other material. That being said, of course I can’t remember where I first read this story. But it is such a good illustration. I used it during our Worship Experience this morning as part of the message, “It’s Not About Us: Service.”
There was a little boy who was playing with his two-year-old sister when suddenly she reached up and yanked on his hair. He ran crying from the room, and when his mom asked what was wrong, he replied, “Lily pulled my hair… and it HURT!”
The mom comforted him for awhile, and when he felt better, she said to him, “Now sweetheart, you know Lily is just a little girl, and she didn’t mean to hurt you. She just doesn’t know any better. She doesn’t know that it hurts when you have your hair pulled.”
The little boy smiled and looked up at his mom. “I understand mommy, can I go play now?”
“Of course, dearest.” And she watched him run off, beaming as we parents do when we think we’ve helped our children come to a valuable understanding of life.
And then she heard the screams of her daughter.
She went running back the hallway and saw her son standing outside the bedroom with a guilty look on his face. “What did you do?!”
“Well, mom, you said she didn’t understand how it felt to have your hair pulled. Now she does.”
Now clearly I am not advocating that we go around repaying everyone who has ever hurt us so that they understand how it felt. What I am saying is that there are a lot of people around us who just don’t know how amazing it is to be loved by God. But we do! We know how incredible it is to feel the Presence of our Creator; to know that we are loved and cherished by the King of Kings! We know what it is like to walk free from the bondage of sin, death, grief, loneliness and guilt.
What a joy to be loved by God!
So the question is, what can we do to help someone else feel that amazing love? What can we do to share the joyous gift of God’s grace? How can we make a difference in the life of someone who doesn’t know their God?
Every day presents us with opportunities. Every day presents us with choices. Do we keep the joy to ourselves? Or do we brighten someones day with a smile? Do we hoard our resources? Or do we share with those whom God has placed in our lives? Do we hold grudges? Or do we choose forgiveness?
However you decide to walk with God today, may it be a blessing to the world around you!