Loving Your Neighbor

Today was Grandparents Day at Atticus’s school. He doesn’t have a grandparent (three have passed away and the other is not in his life), so we were going to leave school early and skip the afternoon “celebration.” Unfortunately, I found out last minute that he needed to perform during the chapel portion of the event because he’s in the 5th grade band. So we switched gears and planned to leave right after service.

When chapel ended, he had to return his instrument to the music room. Once he put away his baritone, he walked over to a classmate who was sitting down locking her clarinet case. Her grandmother was waiting patiently nearby.  I watched from a short distance as he sat down next to his classmate and started to cry. Through his tears, he shared with her the circumstances that left him without anyone except his mom to visit with him today. I had no idea he was feeling so sad. He never shared his feelings with me.

When the classmate heard his story, she asked him if he wanted to join her and her grandma. His face brightened as he looked my way and asked if that would be alright. I said yes, and he happily joined his friend and her grandmother for the rest of the day’s activities.

The grandmother was warm and welcoming. She listened as Atticus told her about himself and shared his class projects and interests with her. She told others that Atticus adopted her for the day and treated him as sweetly as you would expect a grandmother to.

As Atticus and grandma prepared to part ways, he reached out his hand to shake hers. She told him that it was a pleasure meeting him. Then she said, “You’re going to do amazing things in this world when you grow up.”

I was touched by their kindness—the classmate and her grandma. His classmate didn’t have to share her grandmother, but she did so without hesitation. And grandma accepted him without question. They exhibited the true meaning of “love thy neighbor as thyself.” They showed him the love of Christ.

My featured image is what Atticus is supposed to look like when he is a grandpa (credit to his teacher). I enjoyed the contrast and hope you do as well.

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