Sunday, February 01, 2009

Little Acts of Kindness

I must give you an example of what I was talking about yesterday.

On Friday while teaching gym to 6th and 7th grade boys I observed the following incident.

They were all playing basketball.  One boy who I'll call Joseph apparently held the ball a little longer than his teammate would have liked.  Teammate, who I'll call Mark, being a normal, competitive young boy hollered, "Throw the ball!!"

Joseph, who has other challenges in his life, teared up, threw the ball, and backed away from the court clearly not wanting to play anymore.  Seeing Joseph crying I came over to see what had happened.  Mark explained and then, obviously trying to make amends said, "Come on, Joseph.  Come on!  You have to play.  The team needs you!!!  Come on!"  He was gentle in tone and earnest in his encouragement.

Joseph rejoined the game.  I was touched by this incident.  These kids care about each other.  Mark(not his real name) could have easily reasoned, hey, what's the big deal.  All I said was to throw the ball.  But he didn't.  He knew this wasn't about basketball or whether Joseph's response was reasonable. Someone's feelings were hurt and Mark just did what he could to make it right.

At the end of class I made a point of telling Mark what a good thing I thought he had done.  I told him that's just what Jesus would do.

Mark just nodded and ran off to his next class.

Little acts of kindness so warm the heart.


Sarah (JOT) said...

Sweet. And you know letting a kid know you noticed his kindness is awesome!

Laura said...

Isn't that the best?
Nothing warms my heart more than hearing peer to peer encouragement....nice post.

ukok said...

I suppose to both Mark and Joseph, Mark's later words of encouragement were an apology, though Mark might have felt nothing of what he said was wrong.

Is it a boy thing though, that boys just seem to find it so hard to say 'sorry'?

Mark may not have intended any hurt, but his words had that affect.

Good on him for encouraging Joseph, probably the other teammates thought Joseph a bit of a wuss, but good on Mark for taking the time to encourage the boy back into the game.

Rosemary Bogdan said...

Thanks, Laura, me too.

Maybe it is a guy thing, ukok. But yeah, encouraging him back into the game was the best.

Lynz said...

Hearing moments like this really warms my heart. It makes me tear up a bit to see, hear or read about the good in people, following Christ's example.