Ear-Pulling Alternatives

There is one story from my class last week that I have been thinking about this week.

We were having a discussion on culturally-appropriate ways to use affirmation.  One of the pastors in the class had been an elementary ed teacher before being called into ministry.  It was the first day of school.  The children all had to line up in formation, three-persons wide.  Two boys had decided they weren’t interested in following the teacher’s instructions, and instead had stopped to draw some pictures in the sand.  The one teacher went over to his student, grabbed his ear, and pulled him back into line with some rough words.  My pastor/teacher friend knew the other student was in his class, and knew this boy had caused a lot of problems the previous year.  He stopped for a blink, and prayed that God would give him wisdom.  Then he went over to the other boy, looked at the sand, and said, “You made a really good picture.”

The rest of the year, this boy was his buddy, ready to volunteer whenever someone was needed to help out.  He said he was always so glad for that split-second prayer.  So, I’m sure, was that second-grade boy.

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