It’s VBS (Vacation Bible School) at our church this week. Whether serving food, helping with crafts or games, or helping to keep an eye on kids, I am constantly surrounded by children.
One child stood out because she has constantly been a discipline issue. She is nasty to the other children, disruptive, and carries a boatload of attitude
Yesterday, I had to separate her from another girl because they were involved in an argument that was quickly turning ugly. I began to talk to each girl individually while other staff mingled nearby.
With the first girl, it became obvious that she was fearful for her sister. By the end of our talk, she was calm and comforted.
As I walked over to talk with the other girl, I silently “flare-prayed” to God, asking Him for wisdom.
The girl was intimidating. She was defiant, nasty, and angry!
As I began to talk with her, I knew immediately she had a lot of anger bottled up inside. I began to ask her why she was angry and hurting. At first, she denied it, but with gentleness, I told her that it was obvious that she had been hurt because she is a little girl full of a lot of anger.
The Lord then directed me to ask her if she knew that God loved her and if anyone had told her that. Her answer was “No.”
I took her to the Bible and began to have her read a few verses that spoke of God’s love for her, such as John 3:16-17. We talked about what the verses meant, and as she read, her anger began to dissipate more and more.
16 For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. 17 For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.
It wasn’t long before we were talking about Heaven and why God wants her to be there and how special she is to Him!
I asked her if I could pray for her, and she said “Yes.” I then asked her how she wanted me to pray for her. She said, “For God to watch over me.” Right then, I prayed for this precious girl, and my heart broke for her.
At the end of VBS, my hands were full of crafts to distribute to the children, when this girl ran over and gave me a huge hug.
It amazed me how simply telling a child that they are loved, turned an angry, defiant child into a child who was affectionately giving hugs!
My heart broke when I realized how many hurting children there are who are never told they are loved, who have no idea the worth/value they have, and who have never seen or experienced kindness in their life!
I was so convicted that it is easy to judge a book by its cover when in reality maybe we need to see with a different set of eyes… maybe we need to look inside the pages and listen to the stories that are needing to be told…