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The Wisdom of Mr. Kresby

by on September 30, 2013

It was the last day of school. Ninth grade was soon to be history. Some of us had developed a bad practice. We took little water guns to school on the last day of school. We lined our pockets with plastic bags in case of any leaks. We took opportunity to make people wet.

On one attempt, a big hand came down on my shoulder. It was a teacher. I was caught and sent to Mr. Kresby’s office. It was the last day of school. The last thing the principal needed was one more bad boy in his office. There I was. Lined up on a bench with the other bad boys awaiting sentencing.

Mr. Kresby looked very stressed. Imagine, the last day of school, bad boys, teacher problems, records, etc.

I was at the end of the bench. The others received their sentencing. Finally, I was alone with the principal. He looked at me. He took the offending object and threw it into his big green metal waste paper can. He then proceeded to put his foot in the waste can and destroyed the plastic object. The moment of truth had arrived.

He could have paddled me. He could have made me do Summer school. He could have given me a scolding lecture. He could have withheld my report card. He had many options. Students had no rights in those days! His word was law. What would he do? My fortunes were in his hands.

He looked at me and said, “Get out of here and don’t you ever get sent to the office again!”

Whew! I felt like I had just been pardoned. My “life” had been spared. Guilty but pardoned. How did he make that choice?

He knew I was not a trouble maker. He knew that I did not fit into the category of the repeat offenders. So, he processed the others first. Then, grace. Grace. GRACE. Grace is not being given what you deserve. But, far more than that, grace is being given what you do not deserve. I did not deserve grace. He gave grace. I received it.

In Mr. Kresby’s wisdom, he chose grace. He had many options. He chose grace. He had the power. He was in control. He was wise. He chose grace.

It was, albeit, grace with a warning. “Go and sin no more.”  Sometimes the deserved punishment causes more harm than not applying the punishment.  In those cases, grace is the answer. Wisdom is to know which and when and how and why.

There was a price and a reward. My treasured piece of plastic was gone forever. My almost ruined reputation, however, was preserved.

Small price for grace and pardon. To know that I deserved punishment – caught red-handed, in the act and not be punished. I felt grace. To really feel grace is to make guilt and sin and bitterness and anger vanish. Evaporate into thin air. Grace produces joy. The joy of forgiveness and freedom.

Many times since that day I have remembered that day. Many times working with students who needed attention I remembered that day.

Jesus Christ is made unto us wisdom ….. May we use that wisdom to know who and when and how and why to bless and correct and guide those whom God has placed under our charge.

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