Giving A Hand
A few years ago, a Thanksgiving Day editorial in the newspaper told of a school teacher who asked her first graders to draw a picture of something they thankful for. She thought of how little these children from poor neighborhoods actually had to be thankful for. But she knew that most of them would draw pictures of turkeys on tables of food. The teacher was taken back with the picture Douglas handed in… a simple childishly drawn hand.
But whose hand? This class was captivated by the abstract image. "I think is must be the hand of God that brings us food," said one child. "A farmer," said another, "because he grows the turkeys." Finally when the others were back at work the teacher bent over Douglas's desk and asked whose hand it was. "It's your hand, Teacher," he mumbled.
She recalled that frequently at recess she had taken Douglas, a scrubby, deserted child, by the hand. She often did that with the children. But it meant so much to Douglas. Out of all the things he could he been thankful for thanksgiving, he was most thankful for his teacher's hand!
Perhaps from this story, we can learn that one of the most important things that you and I can give someone is a hand that reaches out to them with the love of Christ.
Stories From The Heart
Alice Gray, Multnomah, p. 52.
The Good Samaritan
One semester, a seminary professor set up his preaching class in an unusual way. He scheduled his students to preach on the Parable of the Good Samaritan and on the day of the class, he choreographed his experiment so that each student would go, one at a time, from one classroom to another where the student would preach a sermon. The professor gave some students ten minutes to go from one room to the other; to others he allowed less time, forcing them to rush in order to meet the schedule. Each student, one at a time, had to walk down a certain corridor and pass by a bum, who was deliberately planted there, obviously in need of some sort of aid.
The results were surprising, and offered a powerful lesson to them. The percentage of those good students who stopped to help was extremely low, especially for those who were under the pressure of a shorter time period. The tighter the schedule, the fewer were those who stopped to help the indigent man. When the professor revealed his experiment, you can imagine the impact on that class of future spiritual leaders. Rushing to preach a sermon on the Good Samaritan they had walked past the beggar at the heart of the parable. We must have eyes to see as well as hands to help, or we may never help at all.
Stories From The Heart
Alice Gray, Multnomah, p. 89.