I've actually made more than that cry. It's sad I know. But the other day I was sitting and thinking about all of the things that God has done in my life. I was thinking about how far he has brought me. All of a sudden I pictured too girls. I had made both of them cry. One was in 7th grade. The other was this past spring. These two girls pretty much define what God has done in my life.
One was named Wendy.
The other one I never caught her name.
Wendy was a girl who was a year behind me in middle school. I was in 7th grade and she was in 6th. She was a little overweight and she had a feisty attitude. In middle school we would have "put down" contest. Pretty much we would be on the bus and two kids would face off and start slinging "put downs". "Your mom is soooo fat.." "You are soooo poor..." and you would add a witty ending. Everyone on the bus would crowd around and laugh the whole time and cheer on the winner.
Wendy was in a contest with one of the 8th graders one day. They were going at each other pretty bad. At one point I decided to join in. The 8th grader threw out a put down and I moved and added an extra line. The extra line clinched it. The kids on the bus howled with laughter. They gave high fives to each other and to us. They had declared our side the winner.
We laughed and cheered. Wendy sat and cried.
I'm unsure of the specifics but there was something about what I said (it was about her father) that really cut her. It cut her deep. She sat and cried. I stopped cheering and just stared at her. I had done that. I had cut her. My victory didn't matter. I felt like the biggest loser of them all.
(FAST FORWARD 13 YEARS)
I was going to eat Chick Fil A earlier this spring. On the way in I noticed a young lady standing on the corner with a sign. God immediately let me know that I should do something for her. I went and grabbed my lunch and ate it. On the way out I bought her a combo meal. As I was pulling up to the corner where she was standing I noticed something. She wasn't like the other people who stood at this corner. She held a sign but she didn't look up. She looked at the ground. Her shoulders slumped forward. She wore her shame like a jacket.
I pulled up next to her and rolled down my window. I called her over and gave her the bag. She thanked me and I told her that God loved her. As she glanced in the bag she looked and me and said "WOW!" There was genuine shock on her face. Just then a woman came up behind her and gave her something as well. The girl broke into tears and started to cry on the side of the road. They weren't tears of shame, but instead they were tears of joy. I drove off and prayed for her.
It's amazing how you can influence other people.
You can give them tears of shame, or you can give them tears of joy.
Which one will you give?