Over fish sticks that Sunday, the kids started talking about their swimming lessons. Kimmy swam like a fish, Jake could dive like he was getting ready for the Olympics, and Wes always sank to the bottom of the pool. No matter how he tried, Wes just couldn’t float. As Jake was teasing Wes, Wes said, “I don’t think I have anything to be embarrassed about, after what you and your friends did at swimming lessons this past week.”
Nana Ahsleen raised her eyebrows and looked over at Jake’s parents. Dad said, “It certainly wasn’t one of Jake’s most mature moments. Jake, why don’t you tell everybody what you did?” Jake’s face promptly turned bright red.
“Hey Jake, while you are choking on your food, why don’t I start the story?” said Kimmy.
Jake slowly nodded.
JAKE’S LAUGH BEHIND THE DOOR
Kimmy continued, “On Wednesdays we are bused to the pool for our swimming lessons. A group of old men use the pool the same time as us, but usually we just wave at them and jump in a part of the pool that is roped off. Anyway, this Wednesday they divided our classes up into groups. I impressed everybody how fast I could swim from one end of the pool to the other. Then class was over and we rushed to the locker rooms to get dry and dressed. We girls came out of the locker room, but we could hear a lot of noise still coming from the guys’ changing room. Wes was already dressed and out in the pool area, but we could hear Jake’s loud laugh behind the door.”
THE NEW VERSION OF VOLLEYBALL
“Something wasn’t right,” Wes piped up. “I asked the swimming teacher, Mrs. Johnson if I could check on my brother. Opening the door, I saw Jake’s face and knew he was in trouble. The guys were all dressed, so I gave Mrs. Johnson the all-clear sign. She walked around the boys’ locker room and discovered the floor was soaked. She made her way to the toilets where most of the water seemed to be. Mrs. Johnson was not happy! Jake and his friends had decided to play their own version of volleyball over the toilet cubicle walls. In place of a volleyball, they used pieces of clothing belonging to the men who had changed for the pool before we got there. One of the toilets was full to overflowing with a piece of men’s clothing and it certainly wasn’t the man’s socks.
THE SOGGY MESS
Mrs. Johnson fished out the soggy white mess and carried it outside to the pool area. She looked around at the old guys who were in the water, crouched down at the edge of the pool and motioned for the biggest man to come over. After he got to the side of the pool, Mrs. Johnson OPENED what she held in her hands, held them up. She asked the man if this was his underwear. He quickly grabbed it, jumped out of the pool, and ran to the locker room.”
Nana and the entire Myers family tried not to laugh but pretty soon they were howling in laughter. Jake wished he could just sink under the table and disappear. “Yeah Jake, why don’t you try playing in the pool water next time instead of the toilet water?” Wes snickered.
WHAT JAKE LEARNED
“Jake,” Mom asked, “did you learn anything from all of this? You already made that phone call to Mr. Smith and apologized about his clothing. We know you are also are going to be raking Mr. Smith’s leaves for the next month.”
A WISE PERSON
Nana Ahlseen quietly said, “You know Jake, there is a verse in Proverbs 14:16 “A wise person is careful and stays out of trouble.” Looking back do you think you were very wise in what you did with Mr. Smith’s clothing?”
Jake hung his head and said, “I wasn’t very smart when I thought we should play volleyball with his underwear.”
Nana continued, “I think you also learned another Bible truth. Proverbs 28:13 says, ‘If you hide your sins, you will not succeed. If you confess and reject them, you will receive mercy.’ After you apologized to Mr. Smith and confessed to your parents and God, what happened?”
“They forgave me. Mr. Smith even accepted my apology.” Jake lowered his head and said, “Can I say the prayer today? Lord Jesus, I’m so sorry about how I embarrassed Mr. Smith. Thank You that He forgave me and that You have forgiven me. And also, Lord, could you please help Wes learn how to float?”
And all the family said, “Amen!”
QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION
- What had Jake done?
- Why was he embarrassed?
- What are two things Jake learned?
- Who forgave Jake?
Suggestion: someone reading this pray, regarding all the lessons that God is trying to teach us and we still have to learn, just like Jake