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Living Life in Your Rear View Mirror

Although many people enjoy playing the role of Monday morning quarterback, some are haunted by prior mistakes.  Like a back up quarterback who is adored until they get in the game, an embarrassing moment while in the spotlight can stay with individuals for years.  Every time someone tries to move on, the stains of time appear in the rear view mirror.

As for me, I can think of several days I would like to forget or get a mulligan to do over.  One of things I regret the most in life  is not telling one of my best friends from high school the reason for my new found joy.  Before I had another open invitation to share my faith, she died of cancer.  This image returns in various forms such as her favorite songs, topics of previous conversations and visions of a precious smile.  Even when you try, its hard to let go of pain from your past.

A common theme professed by pastors in history refer to the devil reminding sinners of their past.  Once preoccupied by guilt, remorse and shame, new believers are unable to experience the new beginning promised by Jesus.  Thus, souls live in fear, with one eye on the future and the other in their rear view mirror.  May any of you stuck in the past experience a resurrected spirit, washed by the blood of the Lamb, Colossians 2:13-15.

by Jay Mankus

 

When the Star Saved a Nerd

It was Friday afternoon as high school students began to filter out of the front entrance.  As Tim, the starting quarterback of the football team, began to think of his weekend plans, an unusual site got his attention.  Walking down the main sidewalk, a nerd was trying to carry all of his books home for the weekend, stacked 9 high.  Meanwhile, one by one, other students began to bully and tease this studious boy, causing him to drop his books.  Laughing initially, the second and third time this occurred, Tim became enraged.

Inspired to act, Tim moved out of his comfort zone, introducing himself to this boy with a ghostly face.  Before he finished talking, this nerd faintly responded, “I know who you are, everyone does!”  Feeling awkward, Tim began to make small talk, asking where he lived, how old he was and what he liked to do.  Realizing he lived a few blocks away, Tim suggested, “why don’t I walk you home, I live right around the corner so nobody else gives you a hard time?”  Afraid to reject this offer, they began to pass time in conversation.  As they approached the nerd’s home, Tim humbled himself, asking if his new friend could tutor him in Algebra.  Shocked by this request, this was the beginning of an unique, yet special friendship.

Two years later, this nerd went on to become valedictorian, nominated by Tim to give a speech at graduation.  Shy and afraid, this boy trembled at the podium, staring at his note cards for a moment.  Suddenly, the boy put his cards away, proclaiming, “I can’t do this!”  Sharing from his heart, this nerd dropped a bomb shell on those in attendance.  “Two years ago, I was on my way to commit suicide.  On a Friday afternoon, I brought all my books home so my mom wouldn’t have to clear out my locker.  On my way home, I started thinking about how I was going to do this until a stranger intervened.  Bullied for the last time, I wanted to make these cruel people feel bad.  Yet, Tim stepped in, befriended me and stopped me from carrying out my plan.”   With not a dry eye in the house, this was the day when the star quarterback saved a nerd.

by Jay Mankus

 

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