When I was in the second grade, my sister and I were waiting in the foyer at school. If the kids got to school before the doors were unlocked this is where we had to wait. I can not remember what time it was but it had to have been before 8:30 AM. That was when the doors were opened for us to get in the main part of school.
It was in the winter, snow was on the ground, the wind was blowing, and it was very cold. The foyer was heated so that was good. While we were waiting for the doors to be opened a boy came in that was about two years older than us, we knew the boy by sight only. As usual we all spoke. My sister and I looked at each other, this young boy didn't have any shoes on and he only had a light jacket on. He must have guessed what we were thinking. He said and this is a quote "I bet you aren't as tough as I am." I remember saying "what do you mean?" He said, "could you walk to school without shoes and a heavy shirt?" He called his light jacket a heavy shirt. My sister said, "no, we couldn't have done that." He went on to say, "other kids don't have to know."
I felt this young boy was to proud to tell us his parents didn't have the money for shoes and a winter coat for him and his siblings. Of course we didn't want him to think we would tell anyone about our conversation and we didn't. We did go to our teacher and tell her about the boy that came to school without shoes and a light jacket, all the while we wondered if we had done the right thing. The teacher told us not to discuss this with any of the other school children. We hadn't planned on talking to anyone about him.
Before the end of the school day our principle had gone to the store and bought him some socks, shoes and a winter coat. The principal asked the teachers to 'pass the hat' so the siblings would be able to have shoes and a winter coat. All of them received the shoes and coats.
My sister and I told Mom and Dad what had happened. There was a discussion between them after dinner that night. The next morning Mom gave us an envelope to give to the principal, she said there was some money in it and be sure not to lose it. I am sure there was a note in there also but Mom didn't say there was.
The boy wasn't in school for several days, I have no idea why, back then and to this day I have prayed that he didn't get in trouble. No one else seemed to know why he wasn't in school or at least it was never mentioned but when he came back to school he showed off his new shoes and winter coat.
The Bible tells us to help those in need. One of the verses can be found in Luke 3:11. This particular one says; "He answereth and saith unto them, He that hath two coats, let him impart to him that hath none; and he that hat meat, let him do likewise."
I did not know this principal other than from school but I would like to think he gave to this young boy and made it possible for his siblings to have some shoes and coats because his heart was full of love for Jesus and he was showing this by what he did. Not grudgingly or out of necessity but because of his love for Jesus. II Corinthians 9: 7; "Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver."
I wonder if the principal ever knew of the impact he made on my heart and mind for what he did.
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