On non-test days in my classes, we either take a quiz or do a memory verse, often adding a short writing assignment along with a video clip and notes. You might say we keep busy! Today was no exception. In my three high school Gospels classes, we watched a short video on a girl born with no legs. adopted at birth, who became a gymnast and found out her biological sister was a world famous gymnast. As we are beginning a ten day study of the Sermon on the Mount, our quiz covered Matthew 5:13-30. I always allow the kids several minutes to re-read the material, which sometimes means reading it for the first time. While they read, we talked about two tough things Jesus covers, lust and murder, which sometimes if you watch television are related topics. During the reading session in sixth period, Clara blurted out something fascinating, along the lines of,
"Now I understand!"
I asked for clarification- hope you got the pun! She told me,
"About three or four years ago, David came home one day and told Roseline and me that none of us were going to call each other fool anymore. We stopped."
Let me run the cast of characters here. David is Clara's brother who graduated from WCS last year. Roseline is her sister and a WCS sophomore who played middle school basketball for me. This is what she had just read:
“You have heard that it was said to the people long ago, ‘You shall not murder, and anyone who murders will be subject to judgment.’ But I tell you that anyone who is angry with a brother or sister will be subject to judgment. Again, anyone who says to a brother or sister, ‘Raca,' is answerable to the court. And anyone who says, ‘You fool!’ will be in danger of the fire of hell."
Clara made the connection that the day we covered this in class was the day her brother came home and made a big deal out of it with his sisters. I want to believe she's right.
We live in a hateful, disrespectful culture where so many have no filter on their mouths but that's not what this is about. Christians praise tight knit family units but that's neither here nor there in this piece. You see, I never really thought David paid attention in the two years he was my student. Oh, he's very bright and made decent grades but judging myself at sixteen, I figured most of it went in one ear and out the other. Not that day. He read and applied and took action and I had no clue until today. That carries considerable weight in my book...and in the book of the Much Higher Power. In my 8th grade Bible class today, we read and quizzed over Luke 11:1-28. Do you know what the last verse of that passage says?
“Blessed rather are those who hear the word of God and obey it.”
Lots of folks hear but not that many hear and obey. David did..... and I owe him an apology.
Applicable quote of the day:
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