The Scene: Working on the laptop at McDonald’s. A table full of pre-teen guys are trying to eat. The oldest (perhaps a freshman among them) is acting like a social rooster, pecking down the awkwardness of the younger guys, strutting for the girls sitting nearby, nudging the smallest one of out of the booth with his rear end… over and over.
I’ve been praying for several minutes about the best way to respond.
the others all suddenly had to leave. They hopped on bikes and peddled out. He looked like he was waiting for a ride – it was just him and I. I didn’t move toward him, but stood up while holding my drink and spoke.
Me: (slurp) “So, are you the oldest?”
Him: (a bit startled that I’m talking to him) “Huh? Oh, yeah.” (he smiles… like a security blanket… I’m “bigger than he is.”)
Me: “They look up to you, you know.”
Him: (he pauses, as if to realize it) “Oh, yeah. I guess.”
Me: (a half-step slower this time) “They look up to you.”
Him: (he catches my eye) “Yeah.”
Me: “Use that wisely.”
Him: (another pause) “Yeah…” (another pause) “…yeah.”
I go to get a refill, and return. A couple minutes later he heads out to catch his ride.
As he passes, he says, “Hey, see ya!”
Changing the world? Speaking Life into life? Serving students?
Maybe it happens just like this.
“Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity.” (Colossians 4:5)